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Isolation Blog

Each morning before my kids begin school (I am currently playing teacher, although apparently 'Mummy is headmistress') I play them the old Johnny Mercer classic where he croons 'You've got to accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative.' Sound words, especially for the now.

The negatives are obvious for those who have become either isolated from, have been required to nurse or have even lost loved ones. For them, it will be hard to find positives if indeed there are any for some time and our thoughts and prayers are with them. For the lucky among us is however, not being to roam as liberally as we would like is about as bad as the negatives get, but what of the positives?

Spending more time with my wife in our garden has been a stand-out bonus of all of this, it is too easy to get lost in our fast-paced modern lives and generally just slowing down altogether has been a rare treat. A real surprise has been learning just what a pleasure the kids are to teach. It is genuinely rewarding (though I still suspect that those of you who choose to do it for a living are totally unhinged and should reasonably come to enjoy the same beach front hotel in heaven that NHS staff occupy. I hear Mother Teresa runs the poolside bar where Florence Nightingale will whip you up a mean Pina Colada) Also, after thirty years, I have finally worked out how to multiply fractions with whole numbers, just in time time realise that it is a complete and utter waste of everybody's time.

It is not all positive of course. Children can be frustrating, desperately stubborn and have the propensity to seriously bend the rules of Monopoly. Apparently I am not allowed to buy the purple ones, or the yellow. Or the pink , blue or green. The stations possibly, if I promise fish fingers and chips for supper. But, generally things have been not quite as bad as one might have expected. The sun has shone, the new veg patch is coming along nicely, I have refrained from locking the children in the cellar. For now.

Oh and wine. I have been drinking a little bit of wine. There is a temptation I understand to buy a palette of plonk and indulge that rather British temptation of pursuing a philosophy of quality over quantity, but this is a fools pursuit. If you think little of throwing twenty-five quid or more at a questionable bottle of Prosecco when out in a pub or restaurant then why not use this time to explore what can be discovered by spending that kind of money on a bottle to take home.

Now, more than ever it is important to embrace the things that make us smile and if wine makes you smile than it is worth splashing out on. Keep something nice back for Friday night or to have with your Sunday roast and cheer yourselves up.

You deserve it.


Disznoko Inspiration 2017 Hungary

Dry blend of Tokaji and Harslevelu. Honeysuckle, furniture polish, anise, texture, length, style and lactic richness. Seriously yummy. £24.95

Sons of Eden Kennedy Grenache Shiraz Mourvedre 2017 Barossa, Australia

Plummy, bright, quality Barossa grapes. Bounty Bar. Meat and wood. Svelte and sweet of fruit. This flirts with brilliance actually, a lover of this style would find this irretrievably up their alley. £26.95

Westcott Vineyards Estate Pinot Noir 2016 Vinemount Ridge, Canada

Perfumed is not the word. This veritably crawls up your nostrils and lays siege with pungent notes of sweet cherry, earthy beetroot, cola, incense. Impeccable balance of green-tinged stalkiness and sweetness of fruit. Svelte as svelte can be. A revelation and that rare find; a Pinot Noir that is fabulous value for money. £22.95


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