May 18th, 2020

Orange Vespa Huskyteer

Home Safe

This week the guidance around leisure motorcycling, travel for exercise and meeting people from other households relaxed somewhat. I had Friday off (full disclosure: I was doing a speed awareness course, moved online to a virtual classroom, having been flashed in the 20mph zone on Sydenham Hill back in February), so I seized the opportunity to see Howard for the first time in over 2 months.

We've always lived apart, but under normal circumstances 3 weeks would be a long stretch without seeing each other and after 4 I definitely start pining a bit.

We met at the services where the A24 meets the A272 and travelled to Knepp Park, an estate given over to rewilding, for a nice responsible socially distant walk. We saw longhorn cattle, Exmoor ponies, several flavours of deer, a buzzard and a stork, one of the first to breed in the UK for 600 years.

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I was very tired afterwards, partly from the walk but also from seeing so much of The World after 8 weeks in which I'd been no further than ALDI, and on Saturday I only ventured as far as the recycling bins outside the back door.

Sunday saw me on the road again; I'd emailed a biker friend to tell him about Friday's adventures, and he immediately asked if I fancied a ride. We visited our familiar local beauty spots, Ide Hill and Bough Beech Reservoir, before stopping at a village green and sitting one each end of a bench to drink coffee from our Thermos flasks.

In the afternoon, a local friend invited me for a socially distant picnic in the park. Sitting and sunbathing in public spaces is now on; formerly you had to keep moving. I got a watchmark and I regret nothing.

In the evening it was back to watching Bond films with Twitter.
Cat Air

Cats in a Submarine

During lockdown, a friend has been providing comfort and entertainment by reading furry stories aloud on his podcast, The Voice of Dog.

He's already featured one of mine, Once We Were Meerkats. Since one of my lockdown projects has been buying a mic so I can practise voice work, I asked if I could record myself reading one of my own stories.

I got a lot of excellent help and tips, and the resulting podcast went live last night.

It's a highly serious action adventure featuring the elite SEALPOINT squad of feline special operatives, a Turkish Van cat called Dr de Lite, and plenty of other jokes as good as those ones.

Presenting:

The Zeroth Protocol