The show must go on

The show must go on

It’s Monday evening, almost seven o’clock, when I go upstairs to play my saxophone. On the TV downstairs, the prime minister is briefing the nation about rising coronavirus cases, local lockdowns, and the three-tier system.…

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The rule of six

The rule of six

‘Do not get me anything with seventy written on it,’ Mum says. ‘I don’t want reminding that I’m so old.’ ‘It’s your birthday,’ I say. ‘I don’t want a fuss.’ ‘You do.’ ‘I don’t.’ I…

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All insects great and small

All insects great and small

‘How’s the new house?’ my auntie asks when I meet her at the garden centre for a brew. ‘It’s still standing,’ I say, thinking about the long snagging list that is getting longer by the…

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Woman-about-town

Woman-about-town

For the first time in five months, three weeks and two days, there’s somewhere I need to be. It’s written in the diary. Thursday 27th August — dentist, 9.30am. I start looking forward to it…

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Down by the river

Down by the river

‘We need a day out.’ Mum phones to tell me. ‘We need to go out and eat something. All of us. We’ve not had a meal out since March.’ ‘Where do you want to go?’…

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It’s my birthday and I’ll cry if I want to

It’s my birthday and I’ll …

‘We need to do something for your birthday,’ Chris says, the day before I turn forty-one. ‘This time last year, we were in Crete,’ I say. ‘I know.’ ‘We had that meal looking out to…

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