We spent yesterday hunkered down enjoying the heavy rain. We have so few things on now that we can really relax. Stephen has a lower back pain that’s been bothering him for the last few days. He is unsure what has caused it, but speculates that he is reacting to to the laying down of the burden of so many activities. He has an appointment with his GP tomorrow morning with a view to having an ultrasound. As a long term back pain sufferer I’m advising gentle activity as keeping moving works best.

I tried out the new shopping hour for special needs and elders this morning. I arrived at about 7.30 am and have to say that it was most civilised. There was plenty of fresh produce and although there was a shortage of some items I was able to get all the foods we normally eat. I had been thinking that we could adapt to different foods if necessary as when we lived in China, but looks like it won’t be necessary.

I’m so glad that people who are really elderly will have this quiet time to buy their food. There were lots of staff and they had time to be extra friendly as well. One of the other shoppers said that the reason there wasn’t a frenzy at our Coles was that we are Vic Park folk. But, from what one staff member said things have got nasty during normal hours.

We are presently wondering if Working Voices should meet, we are only a small gathering, but are a bit concerned about meeting at the cafe even though we have a special room. However, it would be good to have one last session. We plan to pay our choir director for some extra weeks – it was our first thought as he earns his living through music.

I was able to get a chocolate cake for tomorrow when we will have a birthday lunch with Matt. His house supervisor has suggested that he have a phone and I think it would be handy as well. He likes taking photos and posting on Facebook, plus it would make him feel more in charge of communication if we can’t visit each other. Fortunately we have a spare iPhone, which I’ve set up with his account so it will have all of his iPad photos, etc. It also means we have a gift for him ready made, as it were. I’m always buying him clothes as presents, so glad to have something different.

We are watching the news, but it still feels very unlikely that we will have an outbreak as severe as the one in Italy where the health system was completely overwhelmed. It just feels like an interesting time when we all need to pull together. Because my mother’s nursing home has gone into complete lockdown my only concern is Matthew, and I feel optimistic that he will be safe. Now that we are taking so many precautions in this country I feel a lot less worried.

Stocked up on coffee beans, of course!

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