Saturday, March 06, 2021


I’ve lost a post. It’s most distressing. I wrote to you on Thursday, as usual, after a day of not feeling well and scarcely walking at all. But neither Word nor Blogger nor a general search of the computer can find it. It was largely about how my carer/cleaner Daniela was going back to Romania, at least for a while. Her husband’s mother isn’t well. We parted that day, with hugs. Helen was horrified. But Daniela had a certificate to say that she had tested Covid-free, and I have been vaccinated, and it seemed worth the risk.


Anyway, today was better. The sun shone, for one thing. C. came, and we walked around the garden once. The step-count was above 2000 as soon as we got back, and stands at 2631 now.


No knitting. Maybe this evening, A good Italian lesson. My eldest child, Rachel, spent a year as an au pair in Milan after school, before university. Alexander spent Christmas one year with some of her Italian friends, and three glamourous girls came to stay with us for a while in Birmingham. I took them to Oxford and Blenheim one day, and on the way we passed a sign indicating the way to Coventry, and one of them remarked that there was a word in Italian, coventizzare, meaning “to destroy utterly”. My tutor and I were talking about the war this morning, and I told her that little incident, and I’m glad to say that she didn’t know the word. She looked it up, and there it was.


I couldn’t find my keys as I was going to bed last night. I am perhaps obsessed with keys, but they must be something of a problem for all of us who live alone. I had a restless and unsatisfactory night. I found them this morning, by thinking about the problem, and am now trying to think of a better plan for their permanent residence.


Mary Lou, I hope you enjoy your kimchi. If anyone wants to make it – I’m sure I’ve said this often before – please do so; it’s fun, let alone delicious. Google “Youtube Brad Leone Kimchi” and you’ll find all you need to know. I omit Brad’s oyster, and I start by cutting the Napa cabbage into largish chunks, before salting. He cuts it up after salting. Otherwise identical.


I’m reading – by which I must mean, re-reading – “Cranford”. It’s delicious.






  1. =Tamar6:28 PM

    It happens. Sometimes posts just vanish. I keep duplicate keys in specific places, including on my person even if I don't intend to go outside. I'm glad to hear you figured out where they were, and that you are feeling better in general. It's sunny here, too, and has been all week.

  2. Cranford! One of my all time favorites, enjoy!

  3. Having lived in Korea and raising two Korean daughters, kimchi is a staple in our house. A Korean friend taught me how to make it, but I rarely do, sadly. I found an enormous jar of Kimchi at Costco last week and bought it. It is delicious, but I am sure the homemade variety is so much better as you know exactly what is in it! I enjoy reading of your kimchi adventures, Jean.

  4. Sorry that post disappeared, even though it had sad news. I am sure you did the right thing hugging Daniela - you and she both made a well considered assessment of the situation, and, never mind the rules, behaved like humans.
    The trouble with things like keys is that one keeps thinking of better places to "always" keep them, and then forgetting which place one decided on! Permanent problem. In our house they are always attached to OH's belt, and I don't know what I would do if he were not here.

    1. I live alone, so mine are always in my pocket. At night, they have a dish on the nightstand. Being locked out would be a serious problem . . . .


  5. Anonymous10:09 PM

    I too worry about my keys!
    I have been relying on a hook near the door (and where I keep my purse). I put the masks there too ...
    If I accidentally leave them in my coat pocket, or anywhere else, it seems to take me quite a while to locate them.
    Please hurry up Spring!
    Lisa RR

  6. We installed a keysafe on the wall outside our front door about 10 years ago. Excellent idea. I tested it a couple of days ago and either we have forgotten the combination or the mechanism has corroded. So... as a belt and braces option it was neither! I'm glad I thought to test it when we didn't need it for real.

  7. Allison6:41 PM

    Jean, There's a lovely BBC Cranford tv series with Judi Dench, Imelda Staunton, and Eileen Atkins and many, many others. Have you seen it? If not, you may want to give it a try sometime.