Ridiculously late Advent Blog Day 11: I wish I’d gone out earlier


Well, after a few days’ break I’m back on the trail of counting down the remaining six days of an Advent now lost in the mists of 2020. After this post just five more of that species to go, then this extended exercise will be over. And everyone will be relaxed (me included) knowing that my obligation to you will be to post on a regular weekly basis like a sensible blogger, using more sensible post-titles.

Today is about a number of things including procrastination, but I’ll get round to that later!

It’s also about snow and mask-wearing and exercise and related matters, though all from a purely personal perspective.

On the topic of masks, I am in very much in favour though I do wish we had access to the functionality of the type used by superheroes in Marvel movies. For too many of us, and certainly for me, it is sometimes difficult to remember to have the mask in my possession when leaving the house or, having arrived at a destination, when leaving the car.

In Marvel movies the superhero can be maskless at one point, then presses a button or makes a hand movement to become armoured or masked. There have been many times during the pandemic when this facility would have been a boon, obviating the need to return to house or car to pick up a forgotten mask.

That said, today was very different for me. Snowed in I decided to do what I should have been doing for many months. I left the car behind and, rather than carry a mask in my pocket I decided to wear it the whole time I was out.

I was going out in search of a shop selling snow-shovels and, as this might involve visiting a number of shops at different locations, putting the mask on and taking it off repeatedly just seemed unnecessary handling which would increase the risk of infection spread. So, I wore it all the time I was out and I think I’ll be doing this in future.

While walking about, I was pleased to see that quite a few other people had adopted a similar practice in their mask-wearing, though there were some who still had a problem with covering their nose.

While I was out the bright skies became rather overcast and I saw some of the snow alter from pristine to not-so. These changes became noticeable from about 4.30pm, when I was on my way home after a ninety minute walk, and that is when I really wished I had gone out earlier. These winter days it is so beneficial to experience the light as well as the freshness of air.

This is where I have to admit one of my greatest faults. Procrastination in many things. I have failed to take advantage of so many publication opportunities as a result of convincing myself I have plenty of time, then miss deadlines. I have put off outdoor exercise believing that my indoor Tai Chi will return soon, but it has not. I had a lovely ninety minute walk today but could have had a longer walk under brighter skies had I left the house much earlier. And so on.

In all of this I must change, especially as the impact of the pandemic in the UK has proved, and looks to remain, long-lasting.

On a lighter note, and finally, I ask you to look at the photograph of my house roof appearing under the heading of this post. Unlike some of the sleazier snow I encountered today, the snow on my roof remained pristine.

As well as being quite pretty, this also signals two things I don’t mind the world knowing.

Firstly, the roof insulation is working.

Secondly, I do not have a cannabis farm in my roof space.

P.S. The snow on the ground, apart from the evidence of my boots, is also pristine. You see, my search for a snow-shovel was unsuccessful. In fact two of the shops I visited told me they had sold their last one earlier in the day. Once again, procrastination strikes!