26 May 2024

I forgot to say – we’re away this weekend. Again. So, this will be a very brief and boring Picayune this week. No change there then.

Sorry/You’re Welcome.

We had a couple of great days with sunshine and clear skies early in the week. Penny managed to get a considerable number of jobs done in the garden and even I helped out – I managed to plod my way around the estate pushing our tired mower ahead of me, rather like an equally tired and knackered old man pushing a walking frame. Most importantly, however, I told Ms Playchute how marvellously fabulous her garden was looking after her efforts.

And so, we’re into our General Election – hooray! Six weeks of nonsense to look forward to. (And sincere condolences to those of you who reside in those areas where electioneering is 24/7/365).

I shall look forward to casting my vote although I am resigned to the notion that it will not have any meaningful impact – we live in a staunchly Conservative constituency. When we had not long moved into the village, one of the old-timers confided to me that “a monkey would be elected in this constituency if it was wearing a blue rosette,” so I suspect our current MP will be re-elected.

Chris Heaton-Harris, who was our previous and equally distasteful MP when we lived in Byfield, announced just a few days ago that he would not be standing at the next election – another rat abandoning the sinking ship. As he trotted through his boastful “achievements” as an MP and Minister for Northern Ireland he highlighted his “success” in helping paper over the ludicrous and “impossible” relationships between Northern Ireland, the Irish Republic, the UK and Europe, brought about by Brexit. He added:

I strongly believe the conditions now exist for Northern Ireland to thrive, with privileged access for manufactured goods into the EU single market . . .

Yes, indeed, the privileged position that he argued strongly against as an ardent Brexiteer – that privileged position which Northern Ireland enjoys which he was instrumental in ensuring that the rest of the UK could not.

How will we know that he’s left, since he’s done [nothing] when he was here? He even looked like a man who was halfway gone already.

Jude Collins, Irish writer and broadcaster

The Guardian, not surprisingly, had an excellent article summing up the last five years, i.e., since Boris was elected. The headline is worth a read all on its own: The Guardian view on the end of a Parliament: five years in which Britain’s leaders showed they were not up to the job.

Boris Johnson, Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak have all provided object lessons in how not to govern wisely or well

The Guardian, 23 May 2024

And Jonathan Freedland had a splendid article explaining how this election needed to be about more than just turfing out a clutch of incompetent wideboys. The election also had to be about “punishing” the Tories for the outright damage they have done over the past 14 years.

the coming general election must also be about the past. It must be about holding the Conservatives to account for the colossal damage they have done to this country over the past 14 years.

Jonathan Freedland, The Guardian

I’ve just read this morning (Saturday) that our own deeply detestable MP has decided not to stand again! Hallelujah! Another rat deserting the sinking ship. I’m still not overly hopeful that we will awaken on the morning of 5 July with anything other than a Conservative Member of Parliament but who knows?

And, now for some really depressing news, how about the study showing that the UK can look forward to “Never-ending Rain” as a result of man-made climate change. What? We don’t have enough rain already?

And finally,

Meanwhile, keep happy, keep smiling, keep exercising, be good, be careful, and keep safe. And be gentle to wasps and bees.

Lots of love to you all,


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