August’s Editorial

Life has seemed rather flat recently. I feel guilty about saying that as there are almost 50,000 people who would love to be here living any sort of life, flat or interesting.

There are also those worried about having no job, not being able to pay the rent, their children going back to school.

The list is endless so that is why I stop myself feeling “flat” and try to count my blessings.


I usually am able to count these which are many, but this week I am having to make a bigger effort. It could be that having just returned from a week’s staycation on the north east coast (lucky me), I am missing the company of my family bubble and my annual “sea fix” was not quite long enough.

Bamburgh castle with its rich historical past gazed steadily across the sand dunes, Alnwick Castle embraced its Hogwarts present and future and Holy Island demanded that you “Mind the gap” between it and the mainland or you would be there for longer than intended.

There are more castles in Northumbria than any other county. This was stated on Countryfile so it must be true?

Though the weather was cooler than further south, the skies were blue and clear, and the beaches uncrowded. The “canny lads” wore their wet suits in the sea but the brave wore their hopeful swimsuits and went for it!

Still I am not the only one who is a bit flat. “It’s like treading water, “one friend said to me, “You don’t know if when you stop, you are going to sink or swim.”

Tidy the house

It’s probably because we have done all the things we have been wanting to do for a long time, and now cannot think what to do next.

The list of tasks we made to keep us busy and focused are all done: we’ve cleaned the cupboards and drawers; thrown away the grey looking pots of herbs used only once for some exotic recipe; sorted the photographs, books, CDs, DVDs, tapes that nobody wants anymore; caught up on the tv programmes we saved but never got round to watching; given our computers a spring clean; cleaned the garage so we can fill it with the stuff to go to the tip once we remember to make an appointment; finished reading “War and Peace “ our third attempt; and as for house maintenance– well Wickes, B&Q and Homebase have never had it so good.

See also:

The garden

But what about the garden? If you are lucky enough to have one. As Lockdown got underway, the Garden Centres were inundated with requests for deliveries. Queues of cars waited patiently to enter, and bedding plants were so scarce they were being sold on the black market.

My garden benefited by having its paths re-laid, the patio weeded and reweeded and sprayed, the sink gardens replanted, a new water feature near the house, some new plants and plant feed. The latter I probably overdid for when I came back from the NE staycation, the garden had reinvented itself as a jungle. Had it become a Madonna follower while I was away?

Breaking news! Amazon do not sell machetes! Tomahawks and bill hooks, yes. But the machete to cut through tough jungle growth—No. Remember you read it here first.

No the garden is pretty well sorted. So what next? And it is that question which I think is in most of our minds. What next? We have tried eating out again, going into shops, seeing friends, most of us carefully, but somehow the virus resurfaces, shouting “ Boo I’m here “ just when we think it might be going.


The government is trying to get us back into some sort of “normal” life, and we are all trying hard too. But will we ever return to normality or will normality itself be reinvented as The New Normality? In years to come will we be known as the Post Covid19 citizens of The New Normality Era? Citizens who reinvented their public and private lives for their own safety, but by socially distancing perhaps became distant from each other, more introspective and gradually less of a community. I hope not. And hope is what will keep us going, I hope.