I’ve fallen out with Alexa. We’re not speaking.
Since she moved in with me I’ve asked her just one question and she couldn’t answer it.
She’d been playing my 50s and 60s music all morning and I fancied a tin of soup. But after having Heinz chicken or tomato soup so often I fancied a change for this week’s shopping list.
So I said: “Alexa, can you tell me all the varieties of Heinz soup?”
She was so baffled she was quiet for a second, then said: “I don’t know that one”. I think she thought I was asking her for a song. Alexa is either thick, obstinate or just messing with me. I didn’t know whether to turn her off at the wall or throw her out the window.
Already annoyed, my mood worsened when I realised my legs were too sore to walk up the stool ladder steps to rummage around the top cupboard in my kitchen where I keep my tins.
I thought I’d pull one down with the hooked end of my walking stick. And because I was always good at rounders I was confident I’d catch it.
I didn’t. The tin bounced off my nose which now sports a black bruise.
In the end I called my granddaughter Caitln who looked up Heinz soup varieties on her iPad. I’ve added carrot and coriander to my list, and it must be Heinz.
There’s something about the brand I really trust. I’ve tried others but always return to them.
I have 12 tins of their Baked Beans in the cupboard and am eating my way through them more than ever since Dr Chris Steele said on TV they have vitamins to protect us from Covid.
Of course there are side effects.
My mum always used to say: “Let your wind go free wherever you may be. In church or chapel, let it rattle’.
She said you should never hold your wind or it’ll give you pain. It’s a good job I live on my own.
I’ve heard Alexa plays breaking wind noises if you ask her to. She might know a lot about wind but she knows nothing about soup.
Losing chains, it keeps us together
Lockdown has forced us to find things within ourselves we never knew we had. And to appreciate things we have on our doorsteps.
This week I opened the kitchen door to let some fresh air in, and stood for a while admiring the frost on the leaves and trees. I’ve never appreciated it before.
The world is changing but there are things we can embrace.
When I was growing up, everyone shopped locally. My mum had a red book of all the neighbours’ shopping and, as the only young girl amongst boys and older people in the village, I did all their shopping for them every day. Mum settled up with the baker, butcher, dairy farmer and hardware store at the end of each week.
When we first went to Sainsbury’s, we thought it was amazing to have everything under the same roof. But such convenience led to the closure of so many local family businesses which was sad.
Now we see big businesses like Debenhams fold, and that’s a huge shame for shoppers like me who liked the store and of course for thousands of workers who have lost their jobs.
We always have to look for positives. And maybe losing big chain stores will mean winning back smaller independent shops in our towns and villages and a return to personal service.
Some footballers I’d like to have a word with include all those who broke restrictions and threw New Year parties.
There’s no point in fining them. What’s £10,000 to someone who earns £250,000 a week?
Instead, they should give a chunk of their wages to Marcus Rashford to help his campaign to feed children. And for at least a month the footballers need to wear luminous vests instead of designer gear while emptying bins, picking up litter and cleaning graffiti. They’re meant to be role models.
Is there no one in their lives they love and feel the need to protect from this virus? Can’t they see medical staff are exhausted but fighting to keep us alive?
At the moment no one needs a party. If they have their health, that’s all anyone needs, especially at the moment.
Princess Diana is such a sad story
The Crown has passed me by because I don’t have Netflix and wouldn’t know how to use it. But I heard that the new series covers the Diana years.
What a beautiful lady with a sad story. I know she was young, naive and under immense pressure when she married. But Prince Charles was in love with Camilla from day one and that big wedding should never have happened.
Even though I was completely in love with my late husband Colin, if I’d found out he was in love with another woman I’d have said: “On yer bike.”
Trump protester is not my Rob!
I don’t like to speak ill of anyone but have said before that Donald Trump is a doughnut.
And after seeing the disgraceful violence in Washington DC, friends said they did a double take of this protester, thinking it was our Robert.
I can confirm that he may have had a big stack of yellow cards in his time, but he’d never do anything like this or he’d have me to answer to.
Thank you to everyone who has written to me, and I wish I could write back to you all.
To Sue, who signed her card, ‘Your Tena Lady friend’, I tried one of your chocolate thins and thought, ‘Oh, here goes’.
Before I knew it, the lot was gone. I felt like Peppa Pig afterwards and might start grunting shortly. I’ve never had those chocolates before but they were so delicious I’ve added them to my shopping list.
And to Marion from Kendal, I was so moved by your beautiful handmade angel I cried.
To Joyce, from Hull, I was so touched that you wrote to me despite the pain in your fingers I would like to send you a covid-free hug.
If you’d like to contact Val, email fea[email protected] or write to Val Savage, PO Box 7290, E14 5DD.