COVID-era thoughts:-

1. There's a little field between my estate and the train station that commuters habitually use as a shortcut. On Friday I went out (for the first time in weeks) to give blood and to post some very belated birthday cards, and was surprised and not a little delighted that the two well-trodden footpaths have been almost completely reclaimed by grass. I find this extremely satisfying: if this can happen after just 8.5 weeks then maybe I'd quite like to stay on this planet after the rest of you have decamped for Mars.

2. It is not inconceivable that a friend might send me a surprise cake, but any friend close enough to send a cake surely also knows it is nowhere near my birthday. My mystification lasted until I remembered that over Christmas, the 'Last Saturday' girls had agreed we would go away on a birthday trip this weekend, only COVID happened. Unthwarted, Cindy decided we should mark the non-occasion anyway! Happy Un-birthday to us!

Robodogs: call it fuzzy names like Spot all you like but hasn't anyone seen the 'Metalhead' episode on Black Mirror? Mind you, I like our robotic swans, the ones that paddle about collecting and transmitting water pollution data for NEA, but these safe-distancing dogs have a predatory gait and I'm definitely going to have to learn to climb trees.

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