A World Turned Upside Down Pt 18.

Flamborough North Landing

So, currently we may be in lockdown, or we may be partially out, then again we may be easing restrictions, or not , does anyone actually know? One thing is certain in all this uncertainty, Boris has no idea what’s going on!

So, where are we then, Covid is still around, and still has the potential to be problematic. There are still local spikes, and likely to be more, and there is the potential for a second wave. These issues will remain until an effective vaccine is introduced and rolled out to the population. The trouble with Covid is it is a “new” virus and as such it’s behaviour and long term viability is still relatively unknown, as such no one can predict how long the virus will be problematic in a population. So, caution is still the name of the game, good hand washing is a great weapon ( as all clinical staff know), keep on practising the fine art of social distancing, and the wearing of face coverings as directed, together we can overcome this!

On to happier things, our world is opening up,a bit, we can shop where we wish, we can go to pubs and restaurants ( not quite as before, but we can go), we can have a bit more of a social life. There are still no cinemas, theatres are really restricted, and indoor gigs are currently not viable due to the restrictions. The gigs and festivals are the thing I miss the most, we don’t just go for the music, we go for the company, a chance to meet up with friends from across the country, to hug , chat, sing and dance with friends – that’s what I miss the most!

Things will get back to the usual normal that we all know and love, we’ll get the chance to dance at the front of the stage to our favourite musicians, or in my case, dance and take photos. It may not be this year, but it will come back – we’ll make sure it does!!

Stay strong everyone, thanks for reading my wittering, look after each other, respect each other, and most of all, love each other!

(An Escape From) A World Turned Upside Down pt 17

July 18th 2020

We were hoping to delay our escape from reality and the current insanity that is the real world by heading from Buckden to Malham, but the Yorkshire Dales weather had other ideas. We woke to rain, lots of it! So packed up the van, took down the tent, that was our “annex”, and waited for a tractor. The farmer, Gill, who owns the campsite had already said they would help by pulling the van up the slope, and as it was wet +++ this morning we didn’t even attempt to get up the grassy slope and waited for rescue. Our knight in shining armour arrived riding his sturdy beast, a lovely red tractor. We hooked up the strapping to the towing eye, and promptly watched the strap break as the tension was taken up! Undeterred Robin (Sir Robin, obviously, as he was a knight!), tied a knot in the strap and pulled again, we got a bit further this time, when once again the strap broke, another knot, and our van was on firm ground – job done! Robin took his sturdy steed home while we chatted to Gill about nursing ( turns out she is also a community palliative care nurse!) and said our goodbyes – we’ll certainly be back to this lovely spot!

As the weather was still pants we had decided to give Malham a miss and head back home to the confused civilisation that’s awaits!

So that’s it, the tale of our attempted escape!

Just the van to clean, and the tent to dry, then we’re good to go once more when the chance arises!

(An Escape From) A World Turned Upside Down Pt 16

(An Escape From) A world Turned Upside Down pt 16

A reet lazy day in the Dales. There was no rush today, there was no need.

We had breakfast then sat and read books while watching some builders repairing a roof – well, someone had to!

The “kids” went off on a “five go on an adventure” trip to Aysgarth, while the Grown Ups  stayed in  Buckden and went to the pub. We also went to the shop in Buckden, which was very exciting – let’s just say it’s a good job we bought plenty of provisions with us as they don’t sell much – we did buy a very small loaf of frozen bread ( they didn’t have any thawed out!), and a postcard!

After recovering from the excitement of the shopping, and the “five go on an adventure” had recovered from their adventure, we decided to climb up the valley behind the campsite to see the waterfalls formed by Buckden Beck as it comes down from the top.

The waterfalls are quite impressive, and worth the climb up if you’re ever in the area.

So that’s it, just about, tomorrow we pack up and hit the road home, sadly.

(An Escape From) A World Turned Upside Down Pt 15

(An Escape From) A World Turned Upside Down pt 15.

We had a plan for today, to climb Buckden Pike at 702 meters (2303 feet), around the 5th highest hill in the Yorkshire Dales. This hill looms up behind the campsite although you can’t see the top due to surrounding geography. Buckden Pike is known as one of the wettest hills in the Dales as the top in peat bog and just soaks up the rain in the winter. There are a couple of old Lead mining levels, but it was not one of the main areas of Lead Mining in the Dales. There is also a war memorial on the top built in remembrance of the polish crew of an RAF WWII bomber that crashed into the hill top in a snowstorm, January 1942. Only one crew member survived, and he was saved when he followed a trail of fox footprints down to the village of Cray. There is a bronze fox head built into the memorial.

We set off in reasonable weather with good views to the head of Wharfedale as we climbed up, but the cloud soon started rolling in, obscuring the hill tops across the valley before enveloping us in mist. We were still in the cloud when we got to the trig point at the top, no views, so after a fortifying swig of Kracken, and cursing the runners who got to the top just after us! We set off along the ridge to the memorial. There was a brief break in the cloud when the valley below revealed itself, before disappearing again. From the memorial the path quickly runs into an area of peat bog, which luckily for us was fairly dry, I have read other descriptions of people sinking up to their knees in the bog, so we got off lightly. Our path then set off downhill following the top of Cam Gill with great views of Starbotton and Wharfedale as we dropped out of the cloud cover. A quick stop for a pint at the Fox and Hounds in Starbotton, before crossing the river by some stepping stones, and then walk back along the valley bottom to Buckden. Around 8.5 miles walked, and 1300 feet climbed from Buckden. A good days work I think!

Barbecue for tea and then flopping for the night I reckon!

(An Escape From) The World Turned Upside Down Pt 14

(An Escape From) A World Turned Upside Down Pt. 14

Wednesday 15th July 2020

It’s a bit grey and damp today, the sort of day where the hill tops are hidden in the cloud. Not a day for going too high up, but perhaps the sort of day when a low level walk with a couple of pubs thrown in could be do-able. So that’s what we did!

After a lazy morning, where I found some nice waterfalls two minutes from the campsite, while Nikki and Frances ran five miles along the valley bottom, and after a fry up brunch, we set off on a walk.

First port of call was a mile and a bit walk along the River Wharfe, The George Inn at Hubberholme, a decent pint of Black Sheep and a very organised bar service system. Then onwards with a climb up to a ridge at the top of Wharfedale, and a walk with some fine views down the dale, before dropping down to the village of Cray. Cray happens to have a pub, which happily boasts the title of the “Best Pub in the Dale”, The White Lion Inn, actually I can believe it, and in order to help boost the local economy, we popped in. A pint of Wharfedale Blonde later and it was time to make our way out of the valley to pick up another ridge path round the bottom of Buckden Pike, and make our way back to the campsite at Buckden. A 5.5 mile pub crawl, and very nice too.

Time to flop for the evening, with a beer or two and a home made Vegan Curry – sorted!

A World Turned Upside Down 12a.

(An Escape From) A World Turned Upside Down Pt 12a!

We’ve escaped! We’ve run away from the world for a few days, far from government ineptitude, far from rules made too late and then ignored by those who write them!

We’ve run away to upper Wharfedale, to Buckden to be precise. A compact village with one pub, one shop, and a few houses, a place where the only mobile signal is to be found on the bridge over the river.

There’s the campsite where we are, some would describe it as a field, that’s just what we like. There are showers at the farm in the village 200 yards from the campsite.

What there is is plenty of peace and quiet, lots of fresh air, just what we need!

What there is is baby swallows in the nest n the ladies loo – I’ve been to see them!

What there is is scenery, lots of it!

What there is is excellent walks up the hills and along the valley – there may be a pub or two, which is nice, and may have to be visited!

So that’s us for the rest of the week, I’ll let you know a how we get on!

The World Turned Upside Down Pt 12

This beauty landed on my leg today, a little sanity in the strange world we live in.

So here we are, some of the lock down restrictions are being lifted, we can go to the pub, we can go to the shops for whatever we want, we can go on holiday. I don’t know if this is a good thing, in my humble opinion it’s too early to ease off on the restrictions, in particular pubs. The thing is, despite putting lots of measures in place to ensure the safety of staff and customers, once the great British public has had a couple of pints they tend to throw all caution to the wind and fall in love with everyone. Then they change their mind and want to fight everyone, this of course throws aside any possible chance of social distancing continuing to be practiced.

I myself enjoy a pint as much as the next man, but I’ll be avoiding the pubs for a bit yet until everyone has got their act together.

Covid hasn’t gone yet despite some people acting as though it has, we still need to be cautious, there are still likely to be localised clusters of infection, as in Leicester for example. As long as we are careful we can continue to reduce the infection rate. So if on public transport, and anywhere else where it’s difficult to keep apart, wear a face covering this does help to prevent the spread of infection, it may be inconvenient but bear with it.

We must not forget there is a lot going on in the world other than Covid, global warming continues at a pace, and we must take action now to bring this under control. The lockdown had shown that cutting down on car use, and in particular plane travel can have a great effect on the amount of pollution in the air – since lockdown air quality has massively improved, sadly it will all too quickly revert back to pre lockdown levels unless we act now.

Brexit planning also continues as the government happily drag us out of Europe, one plus for the government from Covid is that any economic crash caused by Brexit can now be blamed on the virus, so that a win for our devious leaders!

The government have shown themselves up during the Covid crisis, they have blatantly shown us that there is one law for the elite and one for the rest of us. If you have money or you work for the government you can do what you like, the law was not written for the likes of them, it just applies to us mere minions! Stay alert folks, don’t let them get away with anything!

Stay strong folks, support each other, love each other, for this is the way we can change things for the better. If we are strong we can win!

The World Turned Upside Down Part 11

Ch ch ch ch changes! Turn and face the past.

The government are starting to ease off on the Lockdown, these are now very risky times. It’s very tempting after all this time to be silly, to relax, to think that the danger has past, that you can no longer catch Coronavirus. People are more likely to gather close together, maybe even have a party. But the risk is still quite high, there is still no cure ( although we are gaining knowledge about the drugs that can be useful in treating the symptoms). There is still no vaccine, progress is being made, trials taking place, but as yet no vaccine.

There is no need to panic, just be on your guard.

So folks, caution is the answer, give people lots of space in the shops, be patient, you’ll get served eventually, we need to support our local businesses, but we still need to think do I really need to buy that thing? And try not to overcrowd the shops. Wash your hands when you get home from the shops – this is the main defence against the virus, soap breaks down it’s defences, coronavirus is lipid based, soap and water kill it and prevent it being transferred from your hands to your respiratory system. Wearing gloves all the time going from shop to shop does not necessarily work and you potentially build up the amount of virus on the gloves, these are then spread when you take the gloves off. Remember in health care we change our gloves after every patient contact and don’t wear one pair as we wander round the ward. (As you would on a shopping trip).

So after the lecture! Life goes on, we have our health to be thankful for! We’re missing gigs, but there’s loads of music to listen to! We’re missing dancing in the fields, but we can dance in the kitchen! We’re missing having a beer or two at a festival, but we can crack a can in the garden! ( and if it’s raining, even more realistic) 🙂

Holidays abroad may be a problem, but campsites could be opening soon, so let’s put well deserved cash into the local economy.

But most of all let’s carry on being nice to each other, smile as you do the Covid dance on the street when passing strangers, send virtual hugs to all those you love and miss, be patient with those you live with. The world can be a better place when this is done, let’s make a start!

The World Turned Upside Down Pt 10

I’m sitting in the garden soaking up the sun on a sunny bank holiday Monday, all I can hear is our chickens muttering to themselves and the birds singing. Coronavirus seems a million miles away at the moment.

In our household we have stuck to the lockdown rules, we only go out for shopping, exercise or work. We have seven adults in our house at the moment, all been together since the lockdown started. It’s been pretty good, with only the occasional minor falling out you would expect in any household. So big hugs to all who live in our house, we’re all doing a fantastic job, we’ll done guys! And big hugs to all the other households doing the same thing!

I’ll admit it’s not been easy, this weekend, we should have been at an amazing festival in Derbyshire, dancing, hugging and laughing with friends from all over the country. All brought together in one spot to celebrate friendship and music at ‘Bearded Theory‘. But sadly this event, like hundreds of others around the country has been cancelled to protect ourselves and others from the effects of this devastating virus.

Interestingly there would seem to be one large house in London where these lockdown rules do not apply. What’s more interesting is the fact that this house is the place where the rules were developed and put into place, to protect the public from the effects of the virus.

Animal farm comes to mind ‘All animals are equal, some are more equal than others’. This would seem to be the rule the Tory party in the Houses of Parliament follow, they made the rules, so they can break them at will. So it’s ok for a senior government advisor to make the trip from London to Durham when his wife, who was travelling with him, had symptoms of Coronavirus. It was ok for him to make this trip, despite having family in London, just in case his child needed looking after by his elderly parents ( who would be in the high risk category if they caught the virus). And yet the rest of the population, the common people ( who foolishly put this government into power, blinded by the lies he suggested were put into their manifesto), should under no circumstances travel if they show any signs of the disease.

One rule for them, one for the rest of us minions I guess!

This is a lovely example of the contempt the ruling elite show towards the people who put them in power in the first place. We are here simply to earn enough money for them to have a life of luxury and act beyond the laws that bind the rest of us. THEY DONT’T CARE ABOUT THE COMMON PEOPLE! It’s important not to forget this once this crisis has ended!

At least it would seem the virus is starting to recede, infection rates, and sadly, death rates, are in decline. Let’s just hope the public stay on the ball and don’t drop their guard too early. If we all work together we can beat this bug. Once we’ve done that we can then look to bring down the government before they squash us like ants on the pavement. (Some of us would avoid the ants and let them carry on, because that’s how we are!).

Anyway guys, then sun is out, enjoy the outdoors as much as you can, make the most of the day!

Virtual hugs to everyone who knows me, we’ll make up with some serious hugging when all this is done!

Stay safe xxx

The World Turned Upside Down pt 9

We carry on, the government say we are starting to get over the worse of the Covid crisis, this despite the UK death rate now being the highest in Europe – intriguing!

Our esteemed leader, Boris the magnificent and his band of wayward groupies he’s gathered around him seem to think they will be able to start to reduce the lockdown. This of course is not a purely economic decision lead by his friends ( party fund contributors) in industry at all! Let’s just hope that this does not lead to another peak in infection rates, which is likely to happen as people drop their guard ‘cause Boris said it’s ok!

The virus has become more real this week, if such a thing is possible in my business, as two of our Digital Nurse team have caught Covid, they were both re-allocated to the wards to work, and have both caught the virus- I hope they’re going to be ok.

I wrote a poem this week when I was feeling reflective, I don’t do poetry, so see what you think.

Try To Remember.

“When this is all over, when this is all done,

When the doctor says you can go,

But the nurse they say no.

“There’s a letter to write, medicines to get,

And other eight patients I need to sort yet.”

Will you remember the applause?

will you remember the love?

Or will you just complain ‘cause it’s not ready yet?

When you don’t like the food,

when your lunch order is not right.

When you just couldn’t sleep’ cause of the noises at night.

While the nurses were fighting to save a man’s life.

Will you remember the applause,

Will you remember the love?

Or will you just complain ‘cause it was not quite right?

When you want an appointment,

And you’re told you must wait.

When you can’t see the doctor just when you’d like.

When it’s a week later, than the date you would choose.

Will you remember the applause,

Will you remember the love?

Or will you write to the papers with a torrent of abuse?

For twenty five years I’ve worked on the wards,

I’ve been punched and sworn at, sometimes adored,

I’ve gone home elated, I’ve gone home sad,

I’ve had lots of good shifts, I’ve had some bad.

It’s a job I do day after day,

It’s how a earn my wages, I’ve got bills to pay.

So in years to come, when this is all done.

Will you remember how grateful you were?

When The days are long past when COVID had us up against the wall,

The days when we thought society would fall,

Try to remember what we all did,

To get rid of the virus, to allow us to live.

How the key workers put themselves at risk,

How we went off to work to look after the sick.

Try to remember what you thought of us all.

When COVID had your back right up against the wall.”

Anyway, we had a great virtual festival at the weekend, we should have been meeting up with friends at Ey Up Mi Duck festival, which of course didn’t happen, but Neil and Amber, the amazing organisers pulled something out of the hat. They got a good few of the artists who would have performed, and put on a two day virtual festival via Facebook, they raised over £3000 for their chosen charities, and we all had a great weekend. We streamed the music, we chatted with friends via a messenger group, we had a beer or two, and we danced round the fire pit! ( We also camped in the Van on the drive due to decorating). Not quite as good as the real thing, but it worked!!! Thanks to all involved, it made the weekend! (And We got the bedroom decorated at the same time!).

Stay safe folks – we’ll carry on, and when we do meet up in the fields and pubs, it’ll be a great party!!!