Always “When” rather than “If” . .


After about 2½ years of mask wearing, stepping into the road to avoid people, and hand sanitising, I finally succumbed to the virus. We had both tested negative on Friday morning (we have to do a lateral flow test [LFT] before R*** can come home for a visit) so everything looked okay. I had been feeling a little off colour since waking up but put it down to simply being a summer cold.


Saturday came, and I spent most of the either dozing in the chair or in bed. I was still thinking it was a cold and nothing else. By Sunday, I was thinking that the cold was lasting longer than it should. K*** said I should do a LFT to be on the safe side and I was beginning to think it might be a good idea. Then it showed … positive … which was not too unexpected. What was unexpected was the feeling of relief. Relief that I now knew what it was. I called K*** and let her know, before calling the boss. That’s another story, which I may put in writing when the anger dies down.

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Flash forward to today (Monday) and we are testing again as R***’s care home had said that he could go back as long as he tested negative. Well, nightmare time again, this time K*** tested positive. R***’s test was negative, so he was picked up around 11:00. It’s messed him up a little as cannot do any of his normal activities, has to be tested every day and his team have to go back to wearing the full PPE.

Then, at around 12ish we got a phone call from his care home. They are obliged to do a test when he arrives as a matter of course. Amazingly he tested positive. Could not believe it. So now, not only can he not do his normal activities, he is not allowed out of his flat until Tuesday.

Hello COVID Year 3


R**s came home for the weekend on Friday. We have not seen him since 30th December. He likes to be in his flat over the New Year as fireworks upset him, and at his care home, they are able to minimise any startling noise. So it’s a lot calmer for him.


The home went into ‘lock-down’ on the 2nd of January, when one of the staff tested positive. As per the Government guidelines (sic) they were not allowing home visits until there was 28 (?) clear days without any new infections. That changed about a week ago to 14 days, and so he was able to come and visit for the weekend

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Leeds Civic Hall

We had his assessment on Wednesday, which was very traumatic. The Social Worker went through everything with us, and noted everything about him. This should have been done before the funding meeting, but there was nobody available at such short notice, except for the Duty Social Worker. He had little or no knowledge of R*** or his case, so could only go on what he was being told.


The case now has to go to a panel, who will decide if it is an appropriate placement. If it is, and I think we all made a good case, then it goes to a Financial Assessment to see if some of the funding needs to come from R***’s benefits, before going to yet another panel for financial approval.
It’s just more worries on top of more worries, especially as this is likely to happen every year.

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Work is turning into a bit of a chore at the moment. The Assistant Manager left, and it seems that people are jockeying for the position. To be honest, I don’t think any of them are capable. There is more to a managers job, than simply telling others what to do. The boss has her favourites though, so it is down to her as to what happens.


I’m still half-heartedly looking for something else. This job is getting a little too strenuous for me these days. But I don’t want a job that has any form of responsibility. I had enough of that over the past 50 years. I’d love a job, where I can sit at a desk and tap details into a computer system. I wouldn’t want a phone as I’m not very good with people on the telephone. In fact, I’m not very good with people full stop.

No excuse this time . . .


The title refers to the Christmas staff night out. Just after the last night out in September, I ‘predicted’ that the date would be the 18th of December, which is the last Saturday before Christmas. The manager confirmed that the 18th would be the night. Over the past years, our youngest has been at home on the nights they have chosen, which gave me the perfect reason not to go. As I have explained before, I’m not one for social events and dislike eating out with a number of people, that are not family.

With the youngest (RH) now only coming home every fortnight instead of weekly, the 18th falls on his weekend away. Hence ‘no excuse this time.’ It was okay last time, but this time it will be a little different. Two of the people that I got on well with, have now left and won’t be going, but the three people that I cannot stand are still there and will be invited. All the others, I can take or leave them.

It looks like we will be going to the local Italian for their Christmas menu, then on to a local function hall for a ‘Disco’! I think I can just about manage to cope with the meal, but dancing !!! Not these days.

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DST

Thursday was a difficult day. It was the day of the youngest son’s funding review. For the past 10 years his placement has been fully funded by Continuing Health (CH). It’s part of the NHS that provides social care for adults who need full time care and assistance. There are now question that are being asked is whether CH should be fully funding this or whether the Local Authority should part fund the placement. This meant, that we had to got through a process called the Decision Support Tool or DST to identify who funds what.

It was very distressing, as RH has not ‘got better’ he is still Autistic and still needs the support he has been getting. What is different is that since the pandemic started RH has become a lot more receptive to changes that have occurred. This has been mainly down to the core team that work with him. The things he has done with them would not have seemed possible five years ago.

He has been to Centre Parcs for a few days, then a week ago he was at LegoLand, Brighton and walked the street of Central London, which was amazing.

It ain’t going to work …


We have had a 20mph speed limit in the village for about a year now. Maybe a bit longer, but I would say that well over 80% of drivers take no notice at all. The problem is, and this is my opinion, there is no enforcement. None whatsoever. We have the main 20 mph zone signs as you enter the village together with smaller repeater signs, but that’s it basically. There is one of those ‘smiley’ face signs near the school, but that is mainly ignored by the majority.

A great deal of the time, these “speed merchants”, (and again, my opinion) are local people. People who know that they are not going to get caught. I was at the local bottle bank last week, when a van went past. The sign showed that he was travelling at 35mph. The lady who was walking past stated that “… they should not be allowed to enter ...”. I had to explain that the van and driver was from the village and in fact from the same road that I live on.

It was announced in the Parish Magazine, that the Parish Council was putting a bid to purchase a Mobile SID (Speed Indication Device) to raise speed awareness in areas of concern. I don’t think it will have any effect. If drivers already ignore the sign near the school, are they going to take any notice of any signs. Back to my opinion again, but the only thing that will stop this is proper enforcement. Signs at the entrance roads saying that mobile Speed Cameras are in use, together with a Police Office with a Speed Gun would be the better idea. Nothing gets a message home better than a fine.

However, the latest idea is to have a sticker on your refuse bin that tells drivers to slow down. A sticker! On a bin that is only put out one day a week. Really? Is that the best they can come up with?

Interesting times …


I’ve had to do a couple of shopping trips in the past week. Just the essentials, wine, whiskey beer etc etc. I have been amazed at how my local Aldi has got their head around the ‘panic buying’ that we have seen reported. Shoppers queuing outside keeping two trolleys apart. They were operating a “10 out, 10 in” policy and it was working fine. People just seemed to be getting on with it. One funny moment though … an oldish guy turned up on his mobility scooter and started asking “Can I queue jump?” He asked a couple of times before the elderly lady behind me called out “No you can’t … join the queue like the rest.” She then explained that she knew him and it wasn’t his scooter. and that he wasn’t as disabled as he purported to be.

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Morrisons and Aldi today, and although they had got a queuing system in place, it was quiet and not really needed. Aldi still was operating the same system as before, but again it was very quiet. Only thing that I couldn’t get was plain flour and the obligatory loo rolls. I understand, that it is due to the fact that they can be used as paper handkerchiefs.

The thing that struck me most, was how nice people were being. No pushing or shoving. Everyone giving way to everyone. Most people keeping the 2 metre distance. However, the only people that seemed to not have a clue, seemed to be ‘old’ people. Old as in over 70 or so they seemed. One couple in Morrisons today did not seem to be aware of the 2 metre rule and gave me the oddest of looks when I asked them if they could move back a little.

Funniest thing of the day was when I was looking for plain flour. Morrisons had a few bags of own brand and a couple in front of me were looking at the shelf. Her husband said “There’s some!” His wife’s reply was “We don’t buy that type!” To which I relied “I do!” and plonked the offending object in my trolley.

The other funny thing I heard to day was a new word that has slipped into the British language. We had ‘Brexit’ now we have “Covidiots” Hate this ‘made-up-word’ stuff. I think it cheapens the British language somewhat.

Some odd folk …


Now when I say ‘odd’ I mean they do odd things. Take this morning as an example. We occasionally get drivers who need to turn around and they very occasionally will use our drive to perform their turn. Although why they don’t use the small parking area accros the road, I will never know. It doesn’t happen often, in fact I can’t remember it happening this year. So, when I spotted a white car reversing into the drive, I thought little of it. I went upstairs to bring down the washing and after filling the machine and setting it going, I happened to glance out of the window. It was then I noticed that the white car was still in the drive, some 15 minutes after I first spotted it.

I went out to investigate. The driver was still in the car and was reading a book! I tapped his window and asked him “What are you doing?”. He told me that he was just awaiting his wife who was delivering leaflets further up the road. When I asked why he was in our drive, he replied that he didn’t want to wait on the road as it was on a bend and it was a new car! I couldn’t follow his logic and asked him to move. He told me he wouldn’t be much longer as he could see his wife. His wife then came around the corner, said hello and got into the car. They then drove off without even a thankyou or a ‘bye your leave’.

(Written using BlogPad Pro on iPad mini)

Sorry … excuse me … sorry …


It’s amazing how people of my generation find themselves apologising for other peoples mistakes. Take today for example. I am pushing my trolley around a certain German discount supermarket (no not Lidl. and I know a joke about that*) dropping my carefully selected items in said trolley. I have just arrived at the fresh chicken section trolleywhen I’m faced with a gentleman(?) who had left his trolley in the middle of the aisle, whilst he tried to read the small print on the packet of chicken drumsticks. Just in front of him is a lady(again ?) whose trolley is neatly placed diagonally across the same aisle. As I sought to pass both of them, I was forced to move each trolley. I received a glare from one and a “tut tut” from the other as they realised that their trolley was being person-handled. I of course countered their responses with … Sorry! … Excuse me! … I’m sorry! I then carry on shopping, cursing myself for saying sorry all the time, when I should have been saying something in the order of “Move your bl***y trolleys you inconsiderate b***ards!”

I come across this a lot, especially in supermarkets. It’s as if some people are so far removed from reality that they think they are the only ones in the store. It’s not one single age group that’s at fault. They all seem to have the same problem. It must be a form of spacial awareness.

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In one of the small towns that are a part of Leeds area is a large Tesco. For some reason, Leeds planning department felt that it Tesco-Lidlwould be a great idea to allow a Lidl to be located next door. Literally, both stores share the same the entrance road. So here is the so called ‘joke’ I mentioned. *There had been an advertisement campaign for the new Lidl and a commenter on one of the social networks had heard about the financial losses at Tesco’s. His comment was : “Have you heard about the financial crisis at Tesco? Every Lidl helps!

Now I realise you have to be aware of the UK advertising slogans, but I thought it was quite funny.

Looking for your advice …


Right from the first day, I have always allowed people or organisations to follow me without hindrance. I always thought that the point of a blog was to maximise the number of readers and subscribers. That was until recently. I don’t always follow back and don’t always look at their site either. Earlier this week, I noticed that I had a follower that appeared to be offering blogging advice and tips. Always on the lookout to improve, I thought I would take a look at their site. Clicking on the link at the top of one of their posts, opened up my browser with a warning message that the site was unsafe. Being the over-cautious one that I am, I quickly closed it down. I then removed subscriber from my reader list and breathed a sigh of relief. I also noticed that a couple of subscribers no longer had a ‘clickable’ by their name/site name and I removed these also.

So, the advice I’m looking for is: should I enable the Blog by Email option on my site? Does it deter the casual reader? Is it worth it for the number of subscribers that I get? Is it actually any safer?

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Another day …..


   Today went as well as can be expected. Problems developed with the IT system. I think they are network connected, but you cannot explain that to the people (and I use the term loosely) that I work with. The is not a tangible thing that these people can get their heads round. It is cause and effect — there is a problem with the network — the effect is that it is program XXX. We get this often. If the problem was program xxx, then why did we not have the problem all the time ??? They just cannot seem to see the bigger picture. As the saying goes, ‘Tomorrow is another day’. Oh yes, another day, another field of sh*t to wade through.

   Youngest kicked off a bit tonight. I don’t know what set him off, but it took a while for him to settle. He has been a bit angry all weekend really. It will be a school thing no doubt.

…and it’s only Monday


   It started good. Then seemed to go downhill very quickly. It is quite difficult working with some people. Some people are so sanctimonious, and “ne’er do wrongs” that they become impossible to actually get on with at times.

   Youngest had a bit of a do tonight. Everyone still seems to think that is his computer that causes the problem. So, if that is the case, then why did we have no problems with him on Friday evening, all day Saturday and Sunday, when he was never off the thing ???? My opinion, for what it is worth, is that the computer acts as the release for the anger that built up during the day.

   Eldest is back at Uni tomorrow. That will be a bit of a shock to the system. I don’t think he will be up for the quiz, tomorrow night though. I also have some doubts that he’ll be up for the drama on Wednesday. His friend B** did not turn up last week, and did not turn up at the Beer Fest either. The split up, between B** and R** may cause more problems than everyone thinks. If B** does not take part, then I think the eldest, may find some reason to drop out too. I do know, that he is not too happy with the subject matter of the panto. It will be a shame if he does not pop up, as I am beginning to get to like my Wednesday night out !!

   By the way, I’ve started a group on the National Blog Posting Month blogsite. It called Grumpy But Content, and it is open for anyone to have a moan and a whinge, without anyone criticising them. You can find a link on my Blogroll, so go on, sign up and have a good old gripe, just keep it clean, as it I don’t intend to moderate it.

Back again ….


   Well, as expected, the quiz-nite went well again. We got 37 points, which is a record for our little (sic) team. Of course, we did not win. That was never on the cards, but that’s not the point. R** won the bingo though. I don’t think she really knew what to do/say when her numbers came up.

   It’s strange though, seeing people, that I know from the primary school, when I was on the PTA. People that you remember as little kids, that are now grown up and quite mature and sensible. Makes you feel a little old. I think what is worrying though, is that I know the faces, but not the names. Must be an age thing.

   All done for today.