Tuesday, 3 March 2020

Of frogs and drama

There are a hundred shades of brown out there at the moment and a whole lot of mud. No doubt it is the same where many of you are. I have been slipping and sliding about the place and endlessly washing shoes and boots. Football has been called off, over and over, and the streams are overflowing.

I've been busy trying to effectively split my time between freelancing and fiction writing. I find that I can focus on one, but both - not so much. It's infuriating. I so want to be one of the people who can do all of the things. I maybe need to jig my day around a bit and do more of the concentrating stuff early on. I try and work in the evenings, but the creative energy has mostly evaporated by then.

During the day the dog keeps me alert by demanding regular walks. We pound round the green until oxygenating blood is pumping through our brains, then we zoom home and I work while he lies on his back with his paws in the air recovering. At least I don't suffer from sitting still for too long.

Now it's March I can detect the season turning. The Bewick's swans have departed for the Arctic tundra ready to raise new cygnets and many of the pochard have headed off to Eastern Europe and Russia.

It seems to me that the media have reached hysteria point with their coronavirus coverage. Honestly, the children came home with umpteen dramatic stories on Monday, not one of which was true. Tales of it being in the next town, in the next school, of teachers who have it, of the school being closed for three months, of the end of civilisation as we know it. Hurray for all of the apps and the connectedness of everything, otherwise we'd all be ignorant of the impending doom.

I make light of it, but the fact is it has caused real anxiety to some. Anyway, that's more than enough from me. I didn't come here to be all dramatic and philosophical. I am very much concentrating on channelling light at all times at the moment. Although I did actually come here to share the death of a frog with you so that you could sympathise with me vis-a-vis the clean-up operation. The frog in question appeared one day, floating upside down in the pond, having shuffled off his mortal coil. I like to think it was a natural end from old age, after a happy and fulfilling life. But the fact was that someone needed to Deal With It. And believe it or not, there were no volunteers. Every time I went past, I would think, that needs to be dealt with. And I would pop it on my mental to-do list and hope that it was indeed dealt with soon.

And then one day, as if by magic, it was gone. There is a message for us all in there I think. Put off the dreadful stuff as long as you can and it will all sort itself out. Or something like that.


  1. I am with you in choosing not to participate in the ante-upping of fear and catastrophising surrounding the advance of the Coronavirus. There are so many others that will do it for us, completely free of charge, and take a certain pleasure in the reactions it causes. Not that I'm ignoring it, you understand, and I will maybe take my usual hygiene precautions to the next level, (which to be honest, may be long overdue anyway, in this house where the idea of 'bringing the outside in' has been truly taken to extremes, by my delightful dogs.) Keeping an eye on the actual, proven, developments is all I'm prepared to do at the moment, and I'd like to think I'm flexible enough to react when I have to, if the situation requires it. Until then, I'm more concerned on a day to day basis, like you, with my own arch-nemesis. Mud. And audience participation totaling twenty-four, indifferent, hairy feet, (not including my own.)

    The colour Brown will now forever be associated with Consistency, in my memories: a viscous, clinging, tenacious, beastliness, that has also acquired its own sound, namely a long, drawn-out, self-satisfied suck, performed with gusto. The rain we have had, whilst not amongst the worst in the country, has brought out the surprising ability in me to expertly do the Highland Fling whenever I venture out into the garden. The ground simply cannot soak up and absorb any more water, so the patio stones are practically floating on primordial ooze. Any weight on a paving stone causes it to sink down into bog, which then stinkily bubbles up around its edges. If you don't want it to reach ankle level in a heartbeat, you must hop onto its adjacent partner - briefly - before gaining the next before it goes down too. Put your hands on your hips, and set it to a lively tune, and you're jigging with the best of 'em. Sometimes I do wish I didn't look so fat in a kilt, if only for the sake of the neighbours.

    I have it on good authority that Spring is on the way, and, indeed, has already meteorlogically begun. I've noticed cotton frocks, pastels,and even a jaunty pair of espadrilles, in the shops. Me, I'm buying up the wellies and aran jumpers now in the sales, going through the racks still wearing my fingerless gloves, and thinking they would have been better with digits.

    And above all, I'm looking for something that looks good with brown.

  2. I think like the frogs we will all soon have webbed feet. The media are only happy when pedalling doom and gloom which they find in everything these days. A few ‘happy’ stories wouldn’t go amiss. Mornings are definitely when the brain is more inclined to work well.

  3. Ah yes, ...mud. There's far too much of it at the moment. And gloomy news too, but the sun has finally shown its face, so all is not lost! Love your photos of forest and gushing water :)

  4. Another post that had me nodding and smiling. I'm mostly ignoring the media about coronavirus, as I do with most things nowadays. I think that I would have done the same as you with regards to the frog. xx

  5. My husband is paramedic and he laughts at hysterical reactions to this virus here in Czech rep. Last week (when there were not any sick people in our country)some people did crazy shoping in supermarkets (tons of rice and pasta etc.) It was like the 3rd world war was there! Stay calm and enjoy the spring. Hana

  6. I'm purposely paying ZERO attention to the media coverage of coronavirus...it's beyond ridiculous. Apparently hand sanitizer is selling for hundreds of dollars on Ebay or somesuch. Honestly, that crap doesn't even work. i remember the hysteria of Y2K....we were living in Florida at the time and the grocery stores were stripped bare.....then Armageddon passed us by again. My hubby likes to tell the kids how many ends-of-the-world we've lived through.

    Poor wee frog. I hope that his/her earthly remains became sustenance for a passing creature...and lo, the circle of life etc etc.

    Those rushing waters look rather perilous. It's been raining here for two days straight but I feel I have no grounds for complaint. I love the mossy trees....so deliciously green and alive.


  7. I am not fond of floating dead frogs... I suppose some scavenger found the one in your pond, thank goodness. Brown is one of my least favourite colours, especially the mud brown varieties. I have given up counting the running shoes and walking boots that I have scrubbed clean over the past month. At least the dog is self-cleaning, his fur doesn't seem to hold onto the mud so much.

    The corona media hysteria is almost more worrying than the actual threat of a prolonged outbreak. There is a lot of misinformation and those people not equipped with fine critical thinking skills must be very scared indeed. It is however a serious situation because our health care system is already struggling and large number of ill patients (even not critically ill patients) will put further strain on the system. Meanwhile in Westminster no doubt some dubious motions and laws are passed when no one is paying attention. We'll keep up good hand hygiene and try to limit nose poking to a minimum, which is what we try to do anyway.

    I am most efficient in the morning, I am like superwoman for the first two hours at work. I can't concentrate on work in the evenings and admire you for writing when the rest of us flop down on the sofa with an imaginary glass of wine (I rarely drink) and the remote control. Wishing you a productive rest of the week. xx

  8. Goodness.. you have some water going on there! We've had wimpy rain and then a fair bit of clearing so we're good. I can't imagine that with 3 boys not one of them wanted to fish out the dead frog! I'd have thought all of them would be intrigued. Your system of waiting for it to disappear seems to have worked. Better than it rotting in there. :-) As for the Covid-19 - both my husband and I are in the high risk group, up there in age with pre-existing conditions and I have chronic bronchitis - so if I do get this I might die. SO.. I'm taking it seriously and we're going to stock up on necessities in case we need to self-quarantine ourselves. We've had 9 deaths in Washington and several cases here in Oregon. I may stop volunteering at Multnomah Falls as many people arriving from around the globe come straight there from the airport. Risky. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  9. I'm so impressed with your energy levels re the writing. I'm good for nothing after dinner beyond flopping on the sofa in front of the TV. If I'm feeling extra perky I might stretch to a bit of knitting! I'm glad the frog problem has been resolved; I'm just hoping that Bertie wasn't responsible for its disappearance! :o) With regards to the Corona virus, I have a mental image of the whole nation singing the first verse of the National Anthem whilst hand washing. It's playing havoc with my eczema! Happy mudlarking. xx

  10. Phew! Dreadful job averted. What we need is more yellow and blue. Keep well and dry. x

  11. I’m glad the frog disappeared of its own accord. Nature at its best I guess. Usually dead mice or birds in this corner but since my hunter cat died not so much. I’m imaging you working hard with a flat out, paws in the air dog beside you. Wizard has a very similar look at most times. Doesn’t even have to exhaust himself with a walk. As for mud........dancing in the stuff here too. Hope the virus hype doesn’t get too much but something tells me it will. I’m off to wash my hands...happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you. Actually it’s my eldest son’s birthday today. 33 help! B x

  12. Yes, information is tending to hysteria. We need to carefully choose our sources. I have been doing this, for a long while now, so I am not in panic mode.

    Take logical precautions... Prepare as you choose... Do not panic.

    It is terrible that children are being fed so much horror, from class mates... Whose parents are into "The Sky Is Falling" information sources. -sigh-

    On a happier topic, your photographs are glorious!!!!

    Here, we still have snow, but it is melting. -smile-

    Gentle hugs...

  13. Ah, a woman after my own heart - Never do today what you can do tomorrow, 'cause tomorrow it might not need to be done! My cats like the paws in the air attitude, especially if there is a fire in the fireplace. Hang in there - Spring is coming! We have some trees blooming here in the southern part of the US, and honestly, we haven't even had any real winter yet! Somehow I feel cheated.

    Love your photos, as always.

  14. I’m tired of the endless virus fear mongering. I agree it is obviously serious and a risk for some folk but I do feel we need to use a bit of common sense. And as for the rain and mud as well... it really is time for some sunshine and cheer. I think I would have dealt with the frog in the same way as you!

  15. Be glad they play football rather than rugby.. I had 2 rugby playing sons, one of whom still plays at 29 (and with numerous injuries). The attitude for rugby always seemed to be "mud/rain/snow - that'll make it even more fun!" The only thing that ever seemed to stop it was sheet ice covering the pitch.
    At least he's washing his own kit now!

  16. My granddog is here and she just brought a dead lizard into my house. It was quite dried up but still, I don't need that on my carpet. I have her for the week, the granddog not the dead lizard, so I expect there will be many more surprises heading my way. Have a good week and hope it turns green quickly, enough of the brown!

  17. Spring will come, spring will come.... keep repeating. I can't cope with any more mud. And the Corona virus, I can't even. Couldn't get loo roll for love or money at the weekend.