Month: March 2020

Coronavirus Self Isolation – Day 8

Yay, in to our second week of xx* weeks of self isolation and I’m going fucking nuts.

* – insert own guesstimate of how many weeks we’re going to be sat at home.

I think I’m going nuts because I’m snatching all the work I can get which is 10 minutes here and there while worrying about bills, for the house and my business, as well as stuff to do at the house.

I’ve kind of said “bollocks” today and decided enough and just moved all the “stuff I need, but don’t need” into the loft.

Thankfully Chris and I, boarded out the loft out a few weeks back. Well I’m passed the boards to Chris and he screwed them down.

I’ve put a load of racking shelves in the left but the loft isn’t high enough to put them full height, as their 8ft tall. So, I’ve filled the loft with shelves. All the crap has been moved up to the loft so I have a bedroom now, not a space in a cupboard. lol

After weeks of it pissing it down it’s not rained for nearly 2 weeks, so as Chris has been pointing the chimney and we need it to rain to see if it’s water tight.  Tommorow, we’re going to take a hosepipe to it and see if it leaks! Yep. Leaks.

If all is well and we don’t have any leaks then we can start plaster boarding the back bedroom and hopefully a bedroom for Helen.

I’ve been on one and couldn’t stop talking today, much to my self isolation mates annoyance.

Phones .y best mate this evening I’ve talked his head off but, as always I end up laughing with Warwick.

Dog walked, old dear phoned, had tea, thought about what else is going on in the world which seems so unimportant, while stood watching the lack of car lights in the landscape and listened to how quiet it is.

Spoke to Ade. It appears the socialite has had his wings clipped and I feel sorry for him in a way in that his social life line has been pulled from under his feet. In a way were all experiencing this.

My mum has just lost her husband and here she is dumped on her own. I can’t go there and she can’t come here. I’m also beginning to wonder what happens if this goes on longer than a few months.

It feels surreal now, but in a few months will everyone be as polite and happy? One hopes so!

Seems some places are already socially sectioning themselves with small villages putting up signs along the lines of “non locals go home” I saw some last week on my travels and a friend has mentioned they’d seen such signs today.

On a another note I can see all four walls of my bedroom.

Night!

Here’s a picture of my dog drooling.

Womens Bowtie High Heels Pumps Ankle Strap Shoes

The Womens Bowtie High Heels Pumps Ankle Strap Shoes are still available in different colours apart from Red.

I’d like to thank my friend Kim for buying these for me. You got the last pair of red ones you lucky sod, but I love these Peach ones.

Can’t wait to wear these out and about and maybe a trip to Blackpool, Kim?

Coronavirus self isolation – Day 7

Monday, or i think it is on day 7 of the coronavirus self isolation saga. “Coming soon to a street near you…. Coronavirus!!! In virus vision”

Seriously folks, what is going on? What is happening? Where did this virus come from? Roll the dice, are you gonna get it? What happens if i get it? Will i die?

Its a lot of infornation to take in and I spent most of the night reading stuff and watching videos on Youtube.

Better informed and tired I have thought long and hard about those who i care about and spent the afternoon speaking to family and friends. A few folk I want to phone but cant.

Had a few hours work today in Macclesfield so went to my office to collect mail. A few ebay items and a bill! So much for posting me a check ya bastards. If i survive this coronavirus pandemic some folk are getting their arses kicked into touch.

Fixed my clients VPN as they’d run out of licenses. Settings changed in routing and remote access and ports. Changed pptp under ports from 5 users to 25. Now you know!

Spent this afternoon writing a quote and doing more pointing. I take credit for the left hand side of the wall. Right hand side is the finishing touch put together by Chris.

Tea was a full english and afterwards we just sat there making groaning noises and breathing heavily. Love a full english but sometimes it too much.

Delightful walk round the village just before sunset. Sunset was shit but the red sky afterwards was right behind the welsh mountains.

 

 

Coronavirus self isolation – Day 6

Woke up this morning at 8 am which was actually 7am and my body was immediately confused. as it always is when the clocks go backwards or forwards. One day we’ll stop doing this I am sure?

Breakfast today as for the last 4 days I’ve just had one meal a day as either been mad busy or doing work on the house. I’ve also crashed later in the day.

Today tried to apply for universal credit but it seems the government have made this hard to claim for. First, register to apply for universal credit you. Then have to register on the gov.uk website and login there as well.

God knows how long it’s going to be to apply for a Business Grant!

Walked over to Castle stores stores to get some milk and the shop owner tells me the normal cartoons the suppliers can’t get. So now all the milk cartons have been replaced with milk bottles. Yeah, interesting.

Walked round the village and stared off into the distance at regular intervals as the sky this morning was clear enough to be able to see Liverpool.

Filled in the gov.uk websites authorised “details checker” website to be able to apply for universal credit. The second soul sucking website on the route to a hand out of fuck all. Seriously, will be out working if it’s safe and the opportunity arises this week.

Took me an hour to find and fill in all my shit of the digidentity website and I’m still no further forward as you go so far into the application and I can’t get any further!

Bollocks, let’s go point some more wall.

4 hours later, more wall pointed.

Chris ordered tea, takeaway. Delicious. Thanks Chris.

I got the old playstation one out today. Haven’t touched it for a long time as never felt right playing it on it alone.

Ended up sat watching Helen play Bust a Move all night! Go figure.

It’s been trying on and off to snow all day as well, not what we need now is it.

Dog fed, dog walked, dog asleep. Me to.

Night all.

Coronavirus self isolation – Day 5

Today I was up earlier than normal but still last to wake up. Feeling quite numb today on day 5 of my Coronavirus self isolation.

Took Chante for a walk round the village and for the third day, saw no one. Quite depressing really.

Today, however I’ve tried not to think about the coronavirus situation, the finances or how much work still needs to be done at the house.

So I’ve raked out and repointed the huge stone wall at the front of the house. I’ve had to pull part of it apart as it was in a bad way. Removing two of the top stones required both me and Chris’s as their huge pieces of stone. The wall looks ace now.

As does the pointing on the side of the house. Chris was hard at it from 8am this morning. Looks absolutely amazing compared to how it was before and hopefully will keep this old house water tight for another 150 years.

Had a great beef stew for tea courtesy of H then took Chante out for a walk and ended up over at the old man of Mow and stated out across Crewe, Congleton, Macclesfield and beyond.

Watched Thunderball for about the 100th time.

Not got much else to say as feeling a bit “meh!” today.

Bed.

Coronavirus self isolation – Day 4

Day 4 of our coronavirus self isolation and after seeing last nights self employment package I’d say I’m pretty much screwed as the owner of the business. Any staff will be taken care of by the state but after reading between the lines one of the criteria for approval I don’t meet! I will be applying for universal credit later and a coronavirus business loan.

Let’s not dwell on the negative, a positive today. I have to go to one of my favourite customers, which is Capesthorne Hall. I know there will be no staff there today day as I’m going to set up remote access on their office computers but I just like going there just a nice place to go and work and I understand fully why the people who do work there love working there. So I get to spend a few hours in the grounds of Capesthorne Hall.

Capesthorne Hall

Can’t believe how quiet it is on the roads today especially the back roads and even on the A34 I can I keep a steady speed. Perhaps it’s just as well as will I need every mile per gallon out of my fuel for the foreseeable future and as most of my friends will know I’m a bit of a miles per gallon bore. For those who are interested I managed 56 miles to the gallon today driving round on mainly flat roads.

56 miles per gallon

No money in the cash machine at scholar green, no money in the cash machine at Tesco in Kidsgrove! Went home with no money!

Home, tea, beer, bed!

Worrying times ahead.

Found a photo today which made me cry, from Blackpool in April!

Coronavirus self isolation – Day 3

Funny old day today, on day 3 of our coronavirus self isolation. And today we’ve talked lots about the things we are seeing in the news and what folk can and can’t do? We also talked lots about the self employed rescue package, Which, let’s be honest, is pityful!

This mornings walk was a bit wierd and living in a small village there isn’t a massive distance you can walk unless you take one of the paths out of the village, but Mow Cop Castle is now shut. Closed, no entry. If you do go up there people may point and shoot or post your picture on Facebook in minutes.

I understand the need for social isolation but if out to walk the dog alone, then is it an issue? The groups of folk, I’m with the naysayers and it’s pitch forks at sunset.

At the house, Chris has raked out loads of the gable end out in readiness to be repointed. The weather is good so let’s crack on. I’m sure his feet must be aching though! He took some stunning photos while he was out walking his dog today. The Sunset one is stunning.

Helen has been tidying and still found time to rustle up home made chilli con carne and rice. Fantastic with a bit of cheese on top.

So what was I doing?

We have a dead space in the kitchen and using a few offcuts I managed to screw a piece of wood to the wall and hang a shelf off it and then tidied the kitchen.

It’s a galley kitchen and it gets a lot of traffic for such a little room so making space has been hard but now things arent as dusty we’ve been cleaning all the cupboards and arranging thinks into some semblance of life and an additional worktop was just what we needed.

I’ve also sat today and looked what we’ve done (well mainly Chris and Helen) over the past two months and think “Wow”. A lot has been accomplished in such a short time.

Ate Helen’s Chilli con carne and then stood on the doorstep listening to my mum talk about her day as I watched the sunset from the front garden.

We all sat down about 8 to watch a film.

What we watching?
Contagion.
Really?
Yeah
Ok

We managed till 10pm then that was it! Couldn’t watch any more.

Plus it’s another school day tommorow so, off to bed.

Coronavirus self isolation – Day 2

So, what’s been happening at Mow Cop towers on the second day of our coronavirus self isolation.

After last night sitting up late, sitting up chatting, drinking and smoking, this morning’s supposed early morning walk turned into Chris going out on his own.

From 8am my phone litterly exploded. I had a dozen phone calls before 9 a.m. That hasn’t happened in quite some time. Most were support calls or calls from people asking to buy equipment, presumably because they can’t buy laptops from the normal stores as even ebuyer seem to be short on laptops at the moment.

All my support calls this morning were to do with VPN and Office 365 and I spend till dinner time getting people logged on to their offices from their home PCs and also fixing SharePoint issues in Office 365 so staff have access to work files.

It seems quite a few of my customers are now beginning to use the services we set up a long time ago for occasional use to allow all their workers to work from home. Hayes and Partners and Kime O’Brien both now have the majority of staff working from home in self isolation.

I wish them and all my other customers to be safe over the next few weeks. I hope that they can keep their business going despite what’s going on. Theres a lot of really good people out there who are self-employed but employ other people as well and I’d hate to see them lose their livelihoods or have to let staff go. I thought about this alot and I dont want anyone of my friends and family to die from this.

At the house I left Chris pointing the side of the house. This is another task that I really appreciate him doing, pointing off a ladder is not easy. We’ll see if we can con Helen later in to giving you a foot massage.

It must be killing Chris’s feet standing on that ladder all day.

I’m breaking my own self isolation today by driving to two places of work.

The first place I’m going to is a warehouse in Middlewich and then off to Macclesfield to one of my clients offices. Thankfully both places I have the keys for as there is nobody there. All their staff got sent home last Monday and have been self isolating for a week already.

I’m going to install a new VPN as the old one isn’t quite capable of handling the amount of stuff connected to it. The VPN there both using was setup to allow small members of staff but now it’s overwhelmed and new hardware is needed to support nearly 50 staff at one place and 20 at the other.

I have to say as I drive around just how beautiful it is today. The sky is blue the trees are beginning to burst back into life and the roads are as empty as a eunuch’s underpants.

I spent all afternoon installing the VPN and setting up Windows laptops, installing Office 365, adding bits of software to various PC’s before sanitising them all. Various members of staff will be collecting them in the next 24-hours so they can work from home.

Total journey time today was 1 hr 21 minutes. Mow cop to Middlewich to Macclesfield to Mow Cop. Normally this takes well over 2 hours.

Speaking of home! On arriving home Chris and Helen have got the BBQ lit, so we had burgers and sausages for tea while we watched the sun go down over the Cheshire plain. Amazing sunset, great BBQ food.

Another long day, another day safe, another day of fun and laughter and another day of coronavirus self isolation.

Coronavirus Self Isolation – Day #1

On the 23rd of March 2020,Boris  Johnson, the prime minister imposed additional rules and regulations in the coronavirus self isolation debacle and although I’m not going to get a bean from the government being self-employed we’ve taken the decision to self isolate and stop working.

This is even though I’ve been working in an empty warehouse for the past week, alone. But its more to do with the travel restrictions and not me actually wanting to stop working.

So I take 2 maybe 4 weeks unpaid holiday and see what happens in the next couple of weeks. I’m of the opinion that my health and well-being and that of my customers, friends and family is more important than anything else and if I have to go bankrupt in the future so be it. I’ve resigned myself to this should it happen.

My mate Helen is also self-employed and is in the same scenario.

We have both seen our customers disappear over the past couple of days with cancelled appointments and lots of work cancelled overnight. I have work for later in the week but I don’t know if I’ll be able to go, even though I’m going to empty offices.

We sat down as a little committee this morning Helen,Chris and I and decided  we were going to self isolate together as we’ve barely seen anybody for the past few days apart from each other.

So, chez Mow Cop is now on lock down. We have food, we have beer and we have a few other earthly delights to bide us over.

Loved ones have been informed and requested they do the same!


chris up a ladderSo all that discussed and agreed we spent all day watching Chris hang off the chimney pots as he was the only one of us brave enough to climb up to the apex of the roof to re-point the top of the chimney and put some Cowlings on top of the chimney to stop water from running down the chimney and into the back bedroom.

Chris spent all-day re-pointing the chimney and telling both me and Helen, “i’m ok you can go and do something else”, but we were both so worried about him, we ended up both watching him!

Thankfully, Chris was able to carry his huge balls up and down the ladder several times and hopefully tomorrow we won’t need much extra work once the mortar has dried. You wouldn’t catch me up there, 36ft high!

I spent a really relaxing afternoon painting the stairs and the landing away from the stresses of work but this forced lock down does have was all worried about our finances over the next couple of months.

We also got Helen’s huge motor home on the drive today so hello officially has somewhere to sleep at the house so we celebrate her moving in 2 months after we got the house. For the past few weeks I think Helen has been stressing about having to reverse her van into the back garden but she nailed it.

Day one rounded up with a beautiful home made corned beef hash pie and a few beers.

Coming out to my mum

One of the people that I really struggled coming out to was coming out to my mum.

This was the hardest person to express my feelings too for no other reason that I absolutely adore my mum even though sometimes she drives me up he wall. I am my mother’s son and I think we are very similar.

I struggled telling my mum on two fronts the first being, I honestly didn’t know what to say to her at first and I didn’t just want to pull out the first thing that came into my head. So I spent a long time actually conjugating words in my head over and over again before I actually expressed these words to her in person.

There was a problem with this that despite telling my mum 5 times it was only when I turned up at my parents house dressed as Mickey that she understood what I’d been talking about.

The way that I’d chosen to express myself to her or whether or not it was the words that I’d chosen which with the issue I do not know. Just maybe that she didn’t want to hear ultimately what I was telling her. However now that I have told her she understands and we have a much better relationship now than we’ve ever had.

The second reason I really struggled is I didn’t want to hurt my mum and although I know so that she only seeks my happiness in life if I also didn’t want to say something to her which would upset or annoy her hence why it took me so long actually summon up the courage and the correct words to express my emotions and to some extent my mental state towards her.

And no, I shouldn’t have worried about this but it did cause me a great amount of anguish as to what to say.

It’s quite ironic that the words that I chose on five different occasions we’re nowhere near as effective as my actions has just turning up dressed as Mikki.

As I said earlier the relationship that my mother and I know have is the best it has ever been in my entire life it’s almost like, be me, be myself thank you I want to be and ultimately been happy about my life I can now discuss things with my mother but I’ve never been able to discuss with her before.

Doesn’t matter how I visit her whether it be as Mike or Mikki she is fully accepting of who I am and how I dress and I have found myself having numerous discussions with my mother about clothing and makeup. On one occasion my mum has actually said to me that my makeup was too over the top until I explained it was for Halloween. We laughed!

Since outing myself to my mum she has said I am so much happier than I have been for a long time and like I said we have a much better relationship since.

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