The daffodils and blossom are also benefitting from this weather. They are lasting well as the cool nights and not too warm days is prolonging their flowering.
It is surprising how quickly the ground has dried out. The Lupins were drilled at the weekend and would now benefit from some rain to water them in.
The lawns have been mown three times but the grass in the fields is taking its time to get going. We shall have to wait to turn the cattle out; unlike the Archers, we do not have an abundance of grass. Perhaps they have had more rain in Borchester, and David Archer has been generous with the fertiliser!
Richard the mole man is doing sterling work, he has already caught over 40 moles. The eruption of new mole hills is slowing down, so hopefully his job will soon be done. Extraordinarily some have tunnelled under the road through some fairly solid foundations. They must have very powerful diggers, perhaps they have developed formidable drilling techniques similar to the diamond heist thieves which targeted Hatton garden over the Easter weekend.
The report that life expectancy in the UK has declined is interesting. The researchers explain that this is due to lifestyle trends such as the rising consumption of alcohol and unhealthy foods, which is taking its toll. Not only is this unhealthy, it is also resulting in a generation of obese children as well as adults. The stark result is that life expectancy is the UK is in decline and we now have one of the unhealthiest populations in the western world.
Poor standards in many care homes and reduced home help is also blamed for declining life expectancy. There is a rumbling debate about just how much ‘care’, some of the very frail and elderly really require. There are hundreds, if not thousands of elderly being kept alive in care homes and hospitals, far and beyond a time when they have a ’quality’ of life. In times gone by they would have been ‘allowed’ to naturally slip away.
We are rotten in this country at facing our mortality, and that of our nearest and dearest. When asked about the manner of our eventual demise, we say ideally we would like to have a ‘good death’, at a time which is timely and appropriate. However, when it comes to allowing the vulnerable elderly the dignity to slip peacefully away, there seems to be a collective amnesia amongst medics, carers, the authorities and some family members.
This subject should not be brushed under the proverbial carpet. It must be addressed, and a sensible, practical and humane approach should be advocated. The law does not need to be changed, the right route and approach is there to be used and applied.
Watching our elderly immobile, unhappy, in pain and wishing to be allowed to slip away but not allowed to, is cruel and unsustainable.
We must look after the fit and well elderly brilliantly, which in most cases we do. It is the unfit, unwell and suffering whom we can be accused of treating shabbily by keeping them going with drugs, artificial intervention and perhaps too much care.
It is encouraging to see the report that hundreds of traditional British delicacies, including artisan cheeses, pies, sausages, fruit juices and beers, will be given special protected status. At a time when farmers and rural producers are trying to keep their heads above water, a ‘Great British Food’ unit would support and help those who are adding value to their produce.
Producers are finding that marketing locally food and beverages goes down well with the locals. But, it needs this initiative to expand the market, by increasing the number of British-made foods given “protected name status”, from 60 to more than 200 across Europe which would rival the French, where they do this well.
The General Election campaign is now in full swing and all parties are producing their manifestos this week. It will be interesting to see if the general feeling of ambivalence amongst the public will have inspired any of the parties to pull a winning card out of the pack. The main parties remain neck and neck so it will require some major policy announcement to see one pull ahead.
Whilst on racing terms, it was interesting to see one party is keen that last Saturday’s Grand National will be the last. They plan to ban all forms of horse and dog racing. If that were to happen the butchers and supermarkets had better watch out as horse and greyhound meat will be flooding the market!
As soon as blue roadside poster are popping up in the Lewes constituency they are being pulled down and in some cases defaced. The very attractive and photogenic conservative candidate Maria Caulfield carries a moustache very well, but she does look better without one!
Carola Godman Irvine