Mistakes

What is the matter with the computer, has a mind of its own. Please accept my apologies as the first part has been written twice!!!!

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A Trip To Swansea

During Lockdown everyone one was “confined to home”. Its been hard not being able to go out further than a small walk, locally. I was very pleased to have Suzie just before we had to stay at home. Now things are getting easier, some restrictions lifted.

Here in Wales the over 60’s qualify for a “free”  bus pass around Wales. I hasten to add that we can only use it on the Welsh transport buses.

Today has been yet another warm, sunny day. Having looked at my wardrobe I decided it’s time for new clothes. I don’t like shopping on line. So hence decided on a bus trip to Swansea. Sitting on the bus there’s lot to observe. Rules on the bus were to wear your masks and sitting only one of the pair of seats. Going through Briton Ferry it was a delight to see the colourful flowers front gardens, although some gardens were a bit neglected. When travelling over the the bridge one can se the hills and valley on one side and the river Neath that flows under the bridge to the estuary and the sea beyond

During Lockdown everyone one was “confined to home”. Its been hard not being able to go out further than a small walk, locally. I was very pleased to have Suzie just before we had to stay at home. Now things are getting easier, some restrictions lifted.

Here in Wales the over 60’s qualify for a “free”  bus pass around Wales. I hasten to add that we can only use it on the Welsh transport buses.

Today has been yet another warm, sunny day. Having looked at my wardrobe I decided it’s time for new clothes. I don’t like shopping on line. So hence decided on a bus trip to Swansea. Sitting on the bus there’s lot to observe. Rules on the bus were to wear your masks and sitting only one of the pair of seats. Going through Briton Ferry it was a delight to see the colourful flowers front gardens, although some gardens were a bit neglected. When travelling over the the bridge one can se the hills and valley on one side and the river Neath that flows under the bridge to the estuary and the sea beyond. The bus passes the new university. there is also a very large building that used to be the “fords” factory where cars were built. Standing empty for a long while before being taken over by a film company. There is now an area for Covid vaccinations. I went there for mine. One part I do enjoy is to see the sea, with today being no exception and the coast of Devon can be seen in the distance.

At the bus station I disembarked and headed for Primark. Our big store Debenhams has closed as with some other shops. Being a Tuesday there weren’t too many people about and so I could look with ease what was on offer. My main item of clothes were some jumpers, very reasonably priced I bought 5 and picked up a pair of trousers, to wear for best (when I go to church on Sunday). I love to look round the indoor market. Here is another clothes stall where I purchased 2 more jumpers. The fruit stalls are very colourful, a delight to see the various fish displayed on their stall. In the centre, on these stalls, the traditional Lava bread and cockles, fresh from the nearby cockle beds, are sold.

I had time for a quick cup of tea before I boarded the bus back home to Neath. A very enjoyable trip out.

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Covid-19

The year 2020 has been unusual. I myself have found it hard to write my blogs. What will 2021 bring?

The whole world experienced a new Virus, starting in Wanhu, China, spreading to many, many countries.

People became very ill, some survived, others not. Hospitals became full, Nurses, doctors, medics, ambulance crew maintained their roles, tirelessly, to look after the sick. Scientists worked in their laboratories to find a vaccine. The Heads of State kept their countries informed of the situation, giving us guide lines to help stop the virus spreading. Here in Wales every day we had updates on the ‘tests’ being given to those who had the symptoms, All those in contact had to ‘isolate’ for 14 days. The numbers who had sadly passed away, the constant reminder to stay safe and when and what the rules would be, ie. lockdown.

Our first ‘lockdown’ was at the end of March, we have had a ’fire-break’ and now 1 week prior to Xmas ‘lockdown’ again. 1 person could visit a family on Xmas Day but its now back to ‘Lockdown’

In Lockdown only food shops, chemist and essential services were allowed to trade.


During the summer months I was able to enjoy my garden. As I couldn’t get any summer bedding I made do with what I already had in the garden. I was surprised at how colourful the garden was with things flowering throughout in succession until October. Even now I am discovering tiny shoots of the Snowdrops, Bulbs are appearing in the pots.

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The Spiritual Experience

Covid struck the people the world. The government decided to instigate for us to be safe and protect us from this deadly disease by closing down all but essential places, stay in doors, only go out as necessary, social distance and wash hands frequently. This was called “LOCKDOWN”.  Slowly restrictions were eased but at the time of writing “Covid” has not gone but we can all have the vaccine. Throughout the Pandemic our church was closed at the very beginning. That last Sunday there were no hymn books, no collection being passed round and no hand shaking to each other at the blessing of peace. Something big was happening. After a while the church re-opened for Sunday morning Mass. All safety measures were put in place.

In one entrance, out another, down the middle isle – returning by the side from taking Communion, alternate pews blocked off, family could sit together but otherwise it was 1 at each end. Entering church hands were sanitised, masks worn. 2 persons were allocated, starting at the back, to guide us up to communion. Due to there not being so many in church Father introduced an 8.30 am Mass.

2 weeks ago, on the pews, 3 hymns printed on paper. Before Mass began Father announced we would “sing” but no organ and masks still be worn.  Last Sunday some of the restrictions had been lifted. We could now go in and out the same door. On the table at the back of the church were the hymns typed out on paper. When Father entered to start Mass the organ immediately struck up. We had music to accompany us on singing. This made the service so special for me. I looked forward to the following Sunday. There was to be a memorial service for a dear friend who’d passed away at Christmas to be held on Friday.Restrictions lifted and more people can attend.

All good things don’t last. In the week I met one of the ladies from church. Church is closed for 2 weeks. Father has caught Covid and is isolating. But I’ve learnt to be patient and know that won’t be too long before I can worship in God’s church again.

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The Surprise Visit

The text received on the Monday read,” can we come and visit you Nanny? This Friday” The message was from my grandson who lives on Basingstoke. Their 2 children were away with their grand parents. My daughter had told me they were going to Centre parks. Mum and Dad would be on their own for the weekend.

I am always pleased to see my family hence my answer was “yes”. It would be the first time to visit. Their dog Coco was coming too.

The whole weekend, a very enjoyable experience.

When one has visitors to stay there’s much preparation. Luckily the sheets on the guest bed were ready. Underneath is the spare bed so I put the duvet and pillows on the top of bed with the towels and I always get the guests to get the other bed out.

A text message from L at 9.30 am informed me they had just left Basingstoke and by mid-day arrived at my house.


To introduce the dogs we decided on mutual territory. Coco was ready for a bit of execise after the long car journey. A couple of minutes away there is the park, known as the ‘Wreck’ Its one of Suzie’s favorite places having a large grassy area and the park is queit of human activity.

Throughout the visit the dogs got on very well.

After a bite to eat my Grandson took us out in the car. About a 15 minute drive away is Afon-Argoed. A Forest Park, set in the Neath Port-Talbot area in S Wales. It’s approximately 48 square miles, having many exciting paths meandering through and with a small river winding its way down to the distant sea.  Mountain biking and hiking and hill walking trails which are well signposted. The trails long or short, walking either an easy pace or more difficult as hills can be steep. Nature of every aspect can be observed and running along the valley, the river gurgling over the many small, large rocks. Rhosylin car park is free and its where I always used to go but we were in for a shock to find the road closed. Evidently they were tree felling. We continued to the main car park where we duly paid the fee.

The Old Parish Walk was the path decided on as it was relatively flat. The sun shone through the leaves of the trees lining the path. Suzie and Coco we let off their leads, whilst we strolled along, chatting and catching up.

 


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The river that runs through the valley

On the Saturday we visited Oxwich Bay. Set in Gower it has a long sandy beach, dog friendly throughout the year. This is one of my favourite ‘beach’s’. Adventures again. C decided to follow the sat nav. It took us a different way to which I was used to going. Lots of narrow, windy roads. due this fact Suzie found it a bit too much and was sick. Once at the beach we all walked along by the sea, tide in and just going out. How the dogs loved the sea, only paddling though. I’m quiet sure if Id had my bathing costume on and gone in deep Suzie would have followed. Sitting up by the sand dunes the dogs sat quietly while we had our picnic. Lots more people with dogs and children enjoying the warm sunshine. Suzie dug a hole and buried her ball, sat back and let Coco have a look. There is a cafe’ on the beach and before we headed home had a cuppa.

Sunday their last day, A change in the weather, being mist, light drizzle. Time to visit my other son who lives in Swansea. He came with his partner and  their small dog Ruby. Here we met at the Swansea Mariner.  Many boats of different sizes are moored here and there is a section where the small fishing trawlers are moored   Our walk continued over the lock, up to  Swansea promenade, back down to the mariner to enjoy our morning coffee before heading back to my house and time for my surprise visitors return home.

FOOTNOTE. Apologies for not being able to show my personal photos, haven’t been able to work out how to get them from phone to computer.

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New Beginning COVID

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7 August 2021

“Today is a very important day in our History. A day to be thankful we are still alive and by following guide lines able to continue the life as before with a few changes.”

A new virus invaded “THE WORLD” COVID. All countries were involved in finding a way to relieve symptoms, and find a vaccine. Countries were in several “LOCKDOWNS”. Rules introduced trying to keep us safe from this invasive germ. Social Distancing, wearing of masks, washing hands frequently, limited numbers in places. At the very beginning only essential shops, health places were allowed to operate. Thanks to the scientists a vaccine was found. This began the great vaccine roll out. Done in stages, starting with the elderly, slowly people were inoculated.,with 2 doses needed. At the time of writing this the under 25yrs. are being inoculated. Many lives have been lost and our hospitals have been inundated with the very sick people.

Coming out of “LOCKDOWN” has been done in stages and 7 AUGUST 2021 here in Wales restrictions have been lifted with exception of wearing masks in shops. Visiting the Doctor, Hospitals, and anything to do with Health.

For me it has been a strange time. Yes things get done, life goes on, but I have been unable to to do things on my computer. I am hoping this will now change.

Since May 2021 my doctor has been putting me through a lot of tests which were most uncomfortable to go through. Personally I believe they made my body feel unwell, producing some symptoms. Purely in my mind and not for real. This all due to my blood coming back as low in iron. Incidentally I’d had a couple of blood tests very recently prior to that one, were all ok. Now I’ve a clean bill of health and feel fine, apart of the odd aches and pains related to ones age.

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How I Coped in Difficult Times

It is just over a year since Covid came to invade and put us all on a testing time.Scientists from around the world worked endlessly to find a “Vaccine”, At the beginning of this year the break through came and as I write many had the vaccine, many more are due. Its not compulsory so there are a people declining. I have had both my vaccines but still abide by the government guidelines on “ keeping safe”

My daughter has been in touch frequently, my sons have been weekly. We have all aired out our opinions and view points on Covid. Hopefully soon we can see each other again.

The one thing I longed for in Lockdown was a hair cut. an impossible mop of unruly hair had grown. I’d get frustrated at not being able get it into any tidy shape or form. So pleased that when I did our daily walk,  a) met no one b) could wear a hat.

2 Weeks ago, when hairdressers here in Wales were allowed to open, I duly made an appointment and asked my hairdresser to cut in a short style. Just in case we go into Lockdown again. It did feel so,so good. easy to manage despite more grey hairs appearing.

My hair dresser kept to the covid rules. Put a plastic gown on me, she and I had our masks on, on arriving and leaving we did the hand wash. (in the spray to put put on hands and rub well in.

A majority of the time I was able to attend church. A shorter service, no singing, no greetings (in service), no passing round the collection box masks on, hand wash. A system of down the middle aisle and to exit middle aisle, past the altar  on to the side door. For communion we have stewards who show us when o go up to the altar. Last but no least every other pew was blocked off and 1 person sat on end and 1 the other end of the pew.

Shopping – this has taught me “how to shop on line” I have visited our town but so sad to see the state of it now. Many shops have closed , never to re-open again. It’s like a ghost town. The shops that remain open and our market do social distance. facemasks on and some one on the door to control how many in at a time. I miss our cafes being open as a shop to town would inevitably end up with going to my favourites café for a cuppa and chat. When I went to try out my make-up (after not using for a year) it did not smell good, so treated myself to new powder,  lipstick, eyebrow pencil. Only 1 of my perfumes was ok so , with the old make-up, all went in the rubbish.

Our local park is a pleasure to walk through at all times. The gardeners have been maintaining, cutting the grassy areas, weeding and re- planting the flowerbeds. Spring is just around the corner as up through the grass pop the crocus, daffodil,snowdrop. Trees are in bud, waiting to burst out their leaves.

At one point in this epidemic my medication would be delivered. As for visiting my friends and going to my knitting group this has been on hold. I have 1 friend with whom I made a bubble. When going for my vaccine she took me. We were lucky that we both had our vaccines at the same time.

Things are now getting a little easier. I have painted my bedroom. (my son was able to come over last week to paint the parts I couldn’t reach), I am now planning the garden and with some warm weather last week the trees and plants are beginning to prepare to  welcome the spring and summer months. But today cold weather again.

Suzie has been a true companion to me, I have been able to continue to knit and crochet various items for our charity’s. I am thankful to have survived through this memorable piece of history.

Keep safe and thank you for reading.

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In Difficult Times

2020 has been a very different year for ‘everyone’  world wide.  Covid – 19 took hold. We have endured lockdowns and through this time  I have has learnt patience when shopping as usually one has to queue. I do like the fact that many shoppers are not allowed in the store, hence much better to go round and be able to see what the shelves have to offer. I was never overjoyed at ‘Shopping on line’ but now find it beneficial and do a  monthly shop. I purchased a new phone and laptop with Windows 10. Well, new technology and me are not good together and I miss going to see someone about how to use it. Hence time has flown by and I haven’t blogged. But now, I think, I have grasped  how to transfer from phone to laptop the photos.

I missed not being able to get my hair done,feet sorted out, dog groomed, going to the library, visiting charity shops My health improved.

In the summer months I tended my garden, watching flowers and vegetables develop,going through their cycle..

My sunflower 2020

Its like the old days, when I was a child, and have taken up my old crafts. Everyone at Xmas benefited from home made cards which now include birthday cards too. I took up Cross Stitch, done jigsaw puzzles. I have just made my first childs’ poncho, in Granny Squares and a jumper for myself

Childs Poncho Jan 2021

Jigsaw Dec 2020

       

All this I could not accomplish had not a very special dog who came into my life on January 24  2020. We have had some lovely walks. The training, when looking back, was hard, times when I could have given up. I’m happy to say she’s turned out an obedient, loving dog

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About Suzie

I know I have not been in touch for a while but we are still here. Since the lockdown I have a new laptop with Windows 10 on. Getting used to it is frustrating to say the least. Before I could go to the local library or find a class that would help. I also purchased a new printer – wireless. That’s ok.  Yet on new things I am better when shown by a human.

I have been trying to “SYNCHRINISE” no joy. As for photos from phone to laptop and getting from phone to here –hopeless, frustrated. As you know I love to show my  “photos”.

Suzie is settling in well. Giving her lots of love and kindness and gaining her confidence was hard work but we have got there. In return she loves to obey. A favourite game is to play ball – good exercise for me too. She is a lap dog and loves to sit on my lap but I can still do my knitting/crotchet. She knows her commands and at night time sleeps on the end of my bed.  We have  a park close by where I take her. She runs off the lead on a big grassy area, using up all her energy. The bonus is that when we go up there it is deserted! Suzie has paddled in local streams, chased squirrels up trees. At this time we cannot travel on transport, train, bus, so all walks are within walking distance. I tried her once on the train to see my son in Swansea and she loved it. We can visit my special friend who lives just up the road and is my dog sitter. She has a dog Tizzy and both get on well together.

I will close now, Try to write again soon. Thanks for reading.

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Suzie at her forever Home

Suzie with her cracker                      Suzie helping in the kitchen 

Suzie in the garden February

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