Thursday 13 August

At last it was cooler so time to go out into the garden and yank up a few weeds. Then we made so bold as to light a bonfire, which as it had been so dry, went up very rapidly. The bean, beetroot and potato harvest here is amazing. We feasted on all of it this evening.

I have been thinking about the Gold Lyre Project which has been an important part of my life for the last 15 years. I was supposed to be getting a new dress from Sweden, to perform as Queen Pu Abi. No performances in prospect. I am an accredited lecturer for the Arts Society: my talk on the history of the project will be given on Zoom, if at all. In the past we have given talks in schools, museums, galleries. We have attended conferences in Germany, USA, Belgium. Now it all seems inconceivable, and I am sad about this. I know many people face far worse dilemmas, and this is in effect a fascinating hobby which may go by the board, but somehow it seems to be a microcosm of the losses which we are all experiencing. Our lives are diminished I fear.

I am probably cast down about A Level results today too. Part of my professional life for years, as a teacher and examiner. It appears totally chaotic and I am so sorry for the candidates, and for the teachers who no doubt tried their best to give an accurate estimate. Tomorrow I will try to be more upbeat.

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