Coronavirus Diary 33 – Waste Not, Want Not

Yesterday was a bit of a momentous day for me.  The giant skip that had been blocking my window to the world was finally taken away after almost 8 weeks.  The delay had been that a pneumatic part on the crane which is mounted to the back of the truck had failed and they waited for a part or repair which simply won’t come during the lockdown and so they decided I had waited long enough and came to remove everything by hand.  All 1.5 tonnes of it.


I was caught up with a #VeryBritishProblem the overwhelming desire to be a good host, offer refreshments and absolutely do not complain as to why I’ve waited since early March for this removal to take place measured against the desire not to catch the lurgy off anyone.  Normally I have a mug or two I keep just for tradespeople but even that seemed a bit risky and besides, they don’t normally like my soya milk and so I found a middle ground of offering canned fizzy drinks.

Once the skip had gone I even found I had a overgrown climbing rose which I had never seen before.  It made me smile as I remembered just after I moved in February a delivery card was put through my letterbox stating a package had been left behind some pots…. I didn’t know I had any pots.

My very tiny front garden now seems very spacious and empty and clean and so I spared no time at all in dragging out a huge ‘plastic’ plant pot container that I found behind the shed in the back garden.  It all took about 45 minutes as it was so heavy and then when I finally put it in place I decided that not only does the poor half rotten tree Willow tree it contains look so bad (it is actually rotten but I don’t like throwing things out) it may need to be replaced but the pot is quite bright and I’m not sure if it even goes with the house or garden.

I can see now why they put it behind the shed in the first place… but why buy it?   There is definitely an art to buying pots that go with a 200 year old house and bright pink plastic containers might not be it.

I also set out a free-art giveaway.  I have so much ‘junk’ in my new tiny home that I brought from my old bigger home even though I spent 6 months before hand downsizing.  The municpal recycling and waste disposal areas are all closed, the charity shops are closed and going to buy something from Ebay is hardly an essential journey.  So I decided to put some pieces outside and let anyone who wants them to take what they need.

Several pieces have gone and I’ve been complimented for my tastes even by those who similarly had no room in their homes to take away even a freebie.  I always remember when I used to work in offices how really well paid people would charge for their unwanted items, often the very richest people too.  I can’t bring myself to do that even given my current situation.  I’d much rather make someone happy and for the items to get a new lease of life.  I put out only two or three at each time if only so I don’t have to carry them all in when it gets dark.


Free art giveaway!

I spent the morning learning Latin, the afternoon gardening and reading a travelogue set in Central Asia and I cooked lamb shanks whilst listening to African music on a Parisienne radio station.  And they say people who vote Brexit are stupid, uneducated, racist etc!

Considering the circumstances it was a very pleasant day indeed.  I can’t help but think that is how life should be but hasn’t been since I was about 8 and won’t be until I’m about 68 (if I am lucky).  Just doing what makes one happy and answerable to no-one is such a precious thing even in the gloomy days of lock-down.

Now if only one of those people who so gladly took my free art would take notice of my self-isolation notice right above the artwork and left a surprise free offering of their own!

About Stephen Liddell

I am a writer and traveller with a penchant for history and getting off the beaten track. With several books to my name including several #1 sellers. I also write environmental, travel and history articles for magazines as well as freelance work. I run my private tours company with one tour stated by the leading travel website as being with the #1 authentic London Experience. Recently I've appeared on BBC Radio and Bloomberg TV and am waiting on the filming of a ghost story on British TV. I run my own private UK tours company (Ye Olde England Tours) with small, private and totally customisable guided tours run by myself!
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3 Responses to Coronavirus Diary 33 – Waste Not, Want Not

  1. Joseph Nebus says:

    Congratulations on having the spot cleaned out and best of luck with the recovered territory. I, too, would have been all over myself with awkwardness trying to do something nice for the people working.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You are a good host to offer them fizzy drinks, very kind of you Stephen

    Liked by 1 person

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