Friday, 12 August 2022

We've never had it so good.

All the windows are shut, on both sides of the house. Curtains are drawn, as are blinds. The only door wide open is the kitchen door, mainly to aid the heat from the ever-on Aga to escape. England is sweltering. There are two more days of extreme heat forecast before thunderstorms are predicted. All heat waves in England end in thunderstorms, we desperately need rain. This is all so very un-English; very few houses in the country have AC, up to now you are more likely to need functioning insulation to keep your house sheltered from the winter cold, also normally a moderate affair, Moderate temperatures is what the weather amounts to here, winter and summer, with rain more often than not. Not any longer.

Climate change is here. Many parts of the world suffer far worse than we do. Because I keep the windows wide open during the night and early morning and then march through the rooms sealing everything hermetically, it is bearably cool. I cannot imagine what people in small flats without easy access to greenery have to live with. Just like it was during lockdown, unimaginable. 

The weather has captured the main part of the news. The elderly are warned to stay hydrated, keep out of the sun, work as little as we can get away with, forget about BBQs because of fire danger. There is this panic in the air, as if heat is an enemy threatening our very existence.

As if we didn't have enough to contend with; after Covid - which is still rampant and predicted to be worse during winter - came Ukraine. The Russians are occupying the biggest nuclear power station in Europe which happens to be in Ukraine. Shelling and bombardment put the plant at risk and we are back to the fear of a nuclear holocaust in Europe. 

Want more? How about the energy crisis? Millions of people  in the UK face energy poverty. Eat or heat, that is the question. How do you tell your children that you cannot afford to keep them fed as well as warm? Energy bills have doubled this year and will again from October and then again increase in January. Add to that increased food bills, crops dying in fields and shortages on supermarket shelves, hosepipe bans and water shortages.

But there is always the government to make things better, isn't there? Oops, the Tories are shredding themselves and each other in a farcical fight to 'appoint' a new prime minister, after having finally got rid of the utterly incompetent and endless liar Johnson. So no help there, I'm afraid. 160.000 mostly white, mostly old, mostly middle-class members of the Tory party are about to decide this country's fate.

I have always felt that politics have no place in this blog, although nobody can possibly have got the impression that I am right wing. If I am to continue writing here then politics may come into it now and then.

So, some of you have asked, what happened, why have I gone awol? Thank you for your concern but I needed to withdraw for all sorts of reasons.  I have not been ill, nor more than usually depressed; all the same, I've missed writing. Maybe I'll catch up now.




26 comments:

  1. I was glad to see your blog pop up on the top of my blog roll. But---wow!---I can see why you've been too reluctant to write more often. I will keep you and your country in my thoughts.

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  2. Add me to those who are very, very glad to see you pop up in my reader. I lean to the left myself and watch the world news (and often our own) in horror.
    Stay cool and I hope you will write some more.

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  3. You have expressed my sentiments too. I don't understand what people are thinking when they say that they are enjoying this beautiful weather. I am feeling more and more concerned as each day passes, how will people manage to pay their bills during the winter, the lack of leadership from the government, and whatever will Putin will do next!

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  4. Glad to see you again! This post reminds me of the old tune sung by the Kingston Trio: "They're rioting in Africa, they're starving in Spain ..." It's a great example of black humor that weirdly brings comfort -- the world can be a dark place, and always has been.

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  5. Me too glad to see your post. Was wondering how you were handling this mess we are in. Glad you at least have a routine that keeps you mostly cool. Our planet is in danger and I hope people are now seeing just how dark things can get and are willing now to actually do something about it. Stay cool and safe.

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  6. I welcome you back also, Friko. And yes, it seems like England may be in as big a mess as we are (hard to imagine, but possible). When it comes to Climate Change and the heat... at least most of the US has AC. The political climate is another matter... one I'd rather not get into. But I do understand why it pops up in a vent on occasion.

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  7. Good to see you back, Friko. The world seems so different these days.

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  8. I'm glad you're back. I've been concerned. I follow British news a lot and am so saddened by the hardship I read about.

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  9. Good to see your blog pop up today!

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  10. Let me join the queue of those who are glad to see you writing here again, Friko!
    The big picture is a glum one these days, that's for sure. But I'm afraid at the moment my main concerns are much closer to home, involving my Dad who has been in and out of hospital and will have another operation soon (bladder cancer) and my Mum who as his main carer isn't getting any younger or healthier herself.
    Personally, I can say that I, indeed, have never had it so good, with (currently) no financial or health worries, even having escaped Covid so far, and a wonderful Yorkshire Holiday (the first in 3 years) to look back on.

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  11. The world is ugly and very stupid, and we can do nothing about it except talking and writing. So, don't worry about the world, Friko. Take care of yourself.

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  12. Glad to see you back. And yes, climate change is undeniably here. And yes, heat is an enemy threatening our very existence. When the temperature gets to a certain degree and the humidity gets to a certain percentage the human body cannot cool off, will overheat, and die.

    I'm curious how the scaffolding and neighbor's barn rebuild has played out.

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  13. So glad to see you here and writing and for gawd's sake rant and rail as I do. It lets off the steam and keeps that black dog barking way off in the distance. We are old, we don't care anymore.
    Keep on keeping on. I was just about to dig out your email and ask how you were.
    XO
    WWW

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  14. I'm so glad you haven't been ill or depressed. Sometimes stuff just needs to get done and sometimes we are so hot we just don't want to do anything! I wish I could send you some of our unseasonably cool and take a bit of your overly hot so we could even it out. It's been a little too brisk to swim for several days and so windy. We had a fire in the fireplace the other night. This is extremely unusual for us and from what I gather, very unlike states not that far away from us. Go figure. Climate change for sure. Rant away -- we all need to sometimes!

    It's probably little consolation but things aren't any better here (except that we are farther from the nuclear apocalypse, though on the other hand we are headed toward a Civil War. Prices for food are high and there are loads of people taking advantage of this to make things even more expensive but hopefully a little divine retribution will soon fall upon one former leader (?) of this country. That may bring the previously mentioned Civil War, though it might be worth it!

    I'm so glad you are writing again. You are sorely missed when you aren't here. I hope the issues next door aren't quite as bad as anticipated and even better if they are done!!

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  15. All of the Blogger-bloggers I used to follow have disappeared from my feeds, and emails aren't coming any more. Clearly, a change has been made in your system. I went looking around to see who else I might have been missing, and here you are. I'm glad to see your post, and glad to hear that health, at least, isn't an issue. I do hope the 'neighborhood construction' project is finished, and that you weren't inconvenienced unduly. All's well here, especially since we're getting rain now, after weeks of typically Texan hot-and-dry. I've not been roaming much with my camera, since being out in the heat after working in the heat for a week hasn't been especially appealing, but some moderation's in the cards. My hope is that some of the heat being generated by increasingly angry supporters on every side of every issue will moderate a bit, too. The suggestion, like Jeanie's, that civil war "might be worth it" is something I'm hearing more often: usually from people who know civil war only as a metaphor, and not as a reality.

    Anyway. It's really, really good to see you. I'll devise some way to keep your blog visible so I don't miss it in the future.

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  16. You can at least comfort yourself that you are not American! I keep reminding myself it's always darkest before the dawn

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  17. I too was glad to see you posting. I'm saddened to read the contents. I am quite used to ardent heat but others are not. May there be a break soon.

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  18. Friko, nice to read your post now. I thought you were unwell and unable to write. Or some computer problem. I'm glad all is well. You are right about the climate forecast, politics and life in the UK. Many of the things we need most are getting expensive. Winter ahead. Hugs.

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  19. Hi Friko - I hardly dare open my thoughts or my mouth about these times .. but you've expressed it well. Also I'm so glad all is well - even if you've been away a while ... I've been feeling overwhelmed with things I'm doing ... stupid really - just need to kick the motivation bucket and collect a few chores - then I can relax a little more in the Autumn. I am glad I'm not in a high rise, or in a big city, and consider myself extremely lucky to be by the coast - slightly lower temperatures.

    Great to hear from you and to know you'll be posting a bit more again. Take care and hope the garden is coping ... cheers Hilary

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  20. Yes, it has been terrible, hasn't it, living in a sauna each day in this top floor flat that has little ventilation. I am a full time carer mentally supporting my disabled husband through this, but it has been hard. My writing while he sleeps has helped me to keep my sanity x

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  21. I've missed your words so am pleased to be reading you again -- whatever you have to say, including politics which seems to pollute everything. I long ago gave up excluding that topic from my writing since politics has corrupted so much where it has no business. So many issues are at stake I can't ignore what matters.

    Any thought our planet isn't undergoing some major changes in our climate cannot hardly be denied anywhere on our planet, I think. Yet, there still may be people who do that I know here in the U.S. For those like you experiencing excessive heat for the first time I'm sure this must be very difficult. Living in our southwest years ago without A/C keeping the house cool as we could, we did exactly what you describe. We did again when we moved to the SoCal west coast a few years before finally installing A/C. Those decades ago in the desert southwest 3 digit Fahrenheit temperatures (37+ to 46+ Celsius) occurred only 4 or 5 times in the year. Now they occur many times more beginning early in the summer I see in the news.

    There is much with which we are challenged. We're truly living in significantly changing times that show few, if any, signs of diminishing any time soon, maybe not even in our lifetime. Adaptations we might never have imagined needing to make are the name of the game. Doing so would have been easier in many ways when I was younger but in other ways I can do so better now. So, we press ahead, trying to make the best of it all. I find that best for my own mental health. I don't ignore or deny reality, I just choose to live life in a state of mind despite it all -- most of the time.

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  22. Thank goodness I’ve found you again…I thought something had gone wrong or you had stopped blogging. I use to get an email and I see I have some posts to catch up with from you.

    Hot here in the US too and we have the craziest politics of all..full of crazies in the US.

    If possible please put me on an email list, otherwise I’ll just check back here weekly. You are one of very favorite bloggers.

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  23. I’m so glad to have found you again. I use to get emails of your new posts and haven’t in awhile, so I thought you had problems or had quit blogging. If possible, please add my back to your emails. If not I will check weekly to see. I love your writing style and your interesting posts.

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  24. The fate of the world is enough to depress anyone. It is frightening and dangerous times for sure. The only things that help are our few like minded friends, our hobbies and a good meal and a glass of wine. Then there’s is always the garden. Glad to see your posts again.

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  25. I've been away for 5 weeks and was happy to see posts from you upon my return. The world is certainly full of dire news, and nothing has changed in the weeks when we've not watched any news at all. No air conditioning in our house on the west coast of Canada, and it's very warm. Fans help, and all the tricks you've shared with closing up the house and opening windows at certain times.

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Comments are good, I like to know what you think of my posts. I know you'll keep it civil.