FRIDAY The elasticated arthritis compression gloves I bought off the internet for £4.39 work well but need regular washing.
# Keir Starmer looks like he’s having a Kinnock moment.
# Off to Bishopsgate Institute for the free Friday lunchtime musical recital. It was weird seeing the hall with spaced-out chairs.
Booking in advance is required and the correct number of seats laid out according to bubbles, so it was disappointing to notice that a bubble of four did not turn up, plus two single seats.
The performer, flautist Nina Robertson, has a way with the flute that on occasions made it sound like a reed instrument – the upper end of the clarinet or oboe. She played some properly serious pieces by Schubert and Debussy, but then struck out with some busky Irish stuff and finished with a fun piece based in a pair of bickering parakeets.
The parakeet preamble included a story about Jimi Hendrix arriving in London with a pair of parakeets, which he released in Carnaby Street, thus starting a parakeet population explosion. This story was too good to check, so I didn’t.
# Michelle sent me today’s Home Studio project, a Spanish cowboy (vaquero). This is my effort.
# I made a birthday card for my niece, who is a Halloween child, about to become 31 on 31, but didn’t send it because it was deemed too weird. Which is probably right.
SATURDAY I tried another birthday card for my niece and settled on this one, which my sister thought appropriate for a Scorpio.
# We tried in vain to look Halloweeny for the Halloween coffee morning with the Barbican bunch.
Then we all told stories about food and dining establishments. Gill told one about being in Russia on Christmas Day and sitting with a friend drinking hot chocolate and eating Mars Bars and suddenly realising what day it was. There was a concentration of interest in chips, how they are cooked, size and the best local suppliers (Kennedy’s). There was also a grouping around crab and lobster eaten close to where it was caught (Dorset, Whitstable). I broke ranks and raved about the French crêpes galettes we used to eat at Cripes in Brighton shortly after we were first married.
# The annual gathering of estate residents for Halloween went off safely and smoothly. There were plenty of free cakes to eat, soup and other hot drinks. I was reprimanded by a 9 year-old for entering the Under-5s playground to take a picture of a rose bush I had mistaken from a distance to be a pumpkin tree.
# This was a stressful game to watch. It never looked good for Liverpool.