Friday, 14th June, 2024 [Day 1551]

Trying to work out what the weather is going to do these days is quite an art form. This morning as we were getting up, the weather looked a bit cloudy and one was not quite sure how the day was going to pan out. Nonetheless, we made a plan that after we had breakfasted, we would make a trip down to Waitrose in the hope that we might see some of our regular acquaintances. As we were walking down, there was a fairly huge black cloud overhead but it looked as though it might blow over and that better weather would follow on behind. Once we got into the cafeteria, none of our usual friends were there but our University of Birmingham friend phoned up, wondering whether we meet or not as he was suffering from a cold. I told him that I would like us still to meet and we were prepared to risk the small possibility of a cross infection but our friend very thoughtfully turned up with a COVID style face mask in place. So we had a jolly chat about current affairs as well as the current political scene and were deep in conversation when we suddenly realised that we would be late for the next call of the carers who were scheduled for the late morning. So I made a swift call to the telephone agency to get a message to the carers who were probably waiting outside the house to inform them that we would be delayed and then I pushed Meg up the hill as fast as I could (not a particularly easy task) When the carers had checked Meg over, it was time to start to prepare some lunch and, by way of a change, I had put some haddock fillets in tinfoil to bake in the oven and to be served with a baked potato, some broccoli and a microwaved tomato. Whilst lunch was being cooked, though, there was a fascinating press conference being held by the Reform party (previously the Brexit party and previously stiill, UKIP) Some very interesting news had just broken yesterday evening as a reputable opinion poll had actually put Reform ahead of the Tory party by a single percentage point. Last night in the shambles of the ITV multi-party debate (in which there was a lot of talking across each other) Nigel Farage was absolutely full of himself, just having received the poll news. Nigel Farage, forever the self publicist, taunted Penny Mordant that Reform was now the ‘de facto’ opposition party and that a vote for the Conservatives was now actually a vote for the Labour party. This morning, Farage was full of himself, still buoyed up by the same news no doubt and was making the point that the election was effectively over as the Labour Party had won it and the Tories would shortly be reduced to a rump in the new Parliament. Perhaps Farage has in mind that in Canada the then Conservative party suffered an absolutely cataclysmic defeat being reduced to only two MPs. The full story can be told here. Really surprising was the almost entire wipe-out of Canada’s Progressive Conservative (PC) party. It won the previous election in 1988 with 169 seats out of 295 total under Prime Minister Brian Mulroney. However, Kim Campbell (Mulroney’s successor and to date Canada’s only female Prime Minister) lost her own seat and saw the party reduced to a rump of just 2 MPs. Now whether this is actually going to happen in the UK we shall have to wait and see, although I think it is very unlikely. But Farage is quite capable of dealing some savage psychological blows to the Tory party in its present mood and it will be fascinating if they turn into an army of Corporal Jones from ‘Dad’s Army’ shouting “Don’t panic! Don’t panic!” whilst doing exactly that. Yesterday, Meg and I received our postal ballots and we are going to fill them in in a quiet moment this afternoon. But I noticed as we walked down the hill one or two individuals who had evidently received their postal ballots and were clutching them in their hands ready to post. There is quite a lot of research that indicates that people do actually fill in their postal ballots shortly after receiving them and presumably postal ballots are dropping through letter boxes all over the country. I think this is a really significant moment because if a lot of people in the country vote in the next day or so when the Labour party is 21 points ahead and Reform is probably level pegging with the Conservative party, then these postal votes will be ‘baked into’ the system and it means that a late swing will not have the effect one might imagine when a certain proportion of votes has already been cast.

The weather rather made us alter our plans for this afternoon.There was a very intense cloudburst type of shower at lunchtime and I thought that would probably put paid to any plans that I had to try to get the front lawn cut. But then the clouds rolled away and we had a burst of brilliant sunshine. So we watched the TV for a bit, stumbling cross a biopic of Mae West which was reasonably entertaining but whose double entendres were so outrageous I could not possibly repeat them here (except ‘You must come up and see me sometime’ is one of the most memorable) I just about managed to squeeze in getting the front communal greened area cut before the carers turned up for their late afternoon call. I was desperately hoping that they might be about 5-10 minutes late and, by courtesy of a local traffic jam, they did turn up a little late giving me time to complete the mowing. Tonight, the Euro football competition is starting off with the Germany vs. Scotland game some of which I might be tempted to watch. Scotland must stand as rank outsiders but German football is not quite the force that it was and, of course, anything can happen in the heat of a competition.

You may also like

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *