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Saturday 8th January 2022


Well I have paid for mocking God’s ineffectual punishments. I tested positive for Covid today.
It had to happen. Good to get it out of the way now, I suppose.
I’d had another crappy night’s sleep so felt a bit tired and lousy in the morning, but that’s just being a parent and I didn’t think anything of it. I was certainly not feeling “ill”. A guy came round to look at our central heating and managed to get it working again, but he was very dismissive of the people who had installed it all. Not that I need any confirmation of how shit they were. Nearly everything they attempted was bodged and they came close to killing us all, so nothing surprises me. Apparently they had installed the water tank in the bathroom in a way that there was no way to get to any of the vital parts if (and apparently it’s likely to happen every four or five years) anything goes wrong. We’ll need to take down a cupboard wall to fix it. That bit isn’t broken yet, but it’s probably worth looking at over the summer. I know that contractors are supposed to say “Who put this in?” And tut at the work of others, but this man looked so surprised by it all that I think this might be genuinely one of the worst jobs he’d seen. And that wasn’t even what was wrong with the heating.
I am keen to get the best system possible as on a cold weekend like this, our radiators struggle to keep the house anything like warm, but for now he’s just going to install a bigger pump which should make things more efficient and stop this problem occurring again. Be nice to have had it properly done when the work was being done on the house about five years ago though.
The boiler is not the problem though. So it isn’t trying to kill us.

But Covid might be! Phoebe was out at a party this morning, so I was looking after Ernie solo - and with one kid at a time parenting is actually pretty good fun as 90% of your time otherwise is dealt with breaking up arguments and fights. We made fairy cakes and mopped the kitchen floor and cooked some jacket potatoes and I felt full of energy.
Once Catie and Phoebe were back and we’d eaten, I walked the dog and I didn’t feel full of energy any more. I trudged up the hill and my legs were heavy and I was a bit stiff, but then I’d had a personal training session yesterday and only about five hours sleep, so tiredness and stiffness did not feel like symptoms.
I went to bed whilst the others watched Harry Potter - just staying long enough to see Luke Youngblood commentating on the Quidditch match. He appeared in Time Gentlemen Please the year before this film and went on to be Magnitude in Community (giving me one degree of separation from both those projects).
I didn’t really sleep, but felt a little bit odd and had the suggestion of a sore throat and a headache, so I thought I should take a lateral flow test, just in case. But even at this point I thought it was a bit of an overreaction and almost forgot to do it.
I am so used to doing these and have nothing happen, that it was quite a shock to see the second line appearing almost immediately. It wasn’t even faint. It was almost sarcastically bold.
I almost certainly picked this up at Pantoland. I mean it was all right getting to see Donny Osmond do his old hits, but I am not sure the show was worth dying for. And you can quote me on the poster.

Until Tuesday in England you have to back up that lateral flow positive with a PCR test, though I had no doubt that I was infected. Also as a recent chemo patient I have access to the additional medicine that should help prevent things escalating. It was too late to send my home test off, but I went online and found I had 25 minutes to get to Welwyn Garden City (which is about 25 minutes away) to get a test done. So I jumped in the car, now feeling a little bit groggy (but was that just because I thought I should be) and made it in time.
Catie took a test and was negative and as Ernie had been a bit poorly we tried to test him too. It’s very difficult to persuade a 4 year old that you have to stick a cotton bud up his nose and he was insistent that he didn’t have Covid. We should have listened as he was negative too.
Luckily we have an attic where I can self isolate(and have access to a snooker board, puppets and my streaming computer) and luckily we got the heating fixed this morning (as it is otherwise the coldest part of the very cold house). I haven’t yet cancelled the 17th January RHLSTP as there is the chance that I might negative on day 7 and day 8, so might still be able to do it. But in the quite likely event that we can’t go ahead your ticket money will of course be refunded. I’d just sorted out all the guests too!

I get a week off childcare (assuming that everyone else manages to avoid the virus) and hopefully I will stay well enough to get a good chunk of writing done. So far, so good.
Nothing can possibly go wrong.

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