Saturday 9 January

I am beginning to think I should make a little tally of the days and weeks, like prisoners used to do. I remember seeing them in Portchester Castle, when I was a child: made by French prisoners of war. It made a big impression on me, I think I realised that if you were incarcerated, every day would be the same. Which is rather how I feel now.

I decided I would like to do a longer walk this morning, but as I have been squelching through mud an awful lot recently, I did an urban walk instead. I set out quite early, in mist, and few people were around: joggers and a few dog walkers. But wherever you walk, there is always something to look at. This amused me as a sign of the times: a proliferation of masks in a car.

I have been observing chimneys and weather vanes. Amazing what a variety there are. And the gardens are just beginning to spring into life, a few snowdrops, primulas, even some early daffodils. And a lovely witch hazel with a strong perfume.

As many of you will know, gorse is in bloom at any time of the year, hence the saying, when the gorse is in bloom, kissing is in season. I’ll drink to that.

I covered 5 miles in total, and by the end, there were many more cars around. Were they all heading for Tesco’s? In view of yesterday’s arrests in Derbyshire of two lady walkers. there is now a debate as to what constitutes local. I would like to walk by the sea, but I accept that that is not local. All up for discussion over the next two, maybe three months.

A composer I have only recently discovered is Einaudi. It is very atmospheric music. This is one of his most well known pieces, Le Onde. It is worth investigating some more of his works. I tried to get a ticket for a concert at the Royal Festival Hall but they sold out within minutes. Ah, that’s what I miss: live music.

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