”Cut off and ignored” indeed

For me, the biggest question this BBC article raises is, why does  it focus on parents rather than people with disabilities  theirselves? It details how the lives of two or three fairly severely disabled kids have been effected by the lockdown, yet completely ignores the points of view of disabled people  ourselves. If these parents feel ”cut off and ignored”, how do they think their children feel?

Finding out where Lyn is

I heard back from Paul, Lyn’s brother, yesterday. I  had messaged him a few days ago, but it probably just took him a bit to get back  to me. Lyn’s funeral took place on May the Sixth, and was a small family event; her ashes are going to be spread at Eltham Cemetery.  It relieved me to be told that a bit: of  course I’m heartbroken that I couldn’t go to the funeral, but there is going to be a larger commemoration of Lyn’s life later  in the  year, and Eltham Cemetery is a short, pleasant walk from my new home, so I’ll be able to visit her, so to speak.

However, rolling there yesterday afternoon, I found the cemetery gates  shut and locked: you can currently only visit at weekends. Sat there, in  front of that notice in my powerchair, I felt like crying: Lyn  my best ever friend, the most  amazing person I’ll ever meet, was dead,  and  not only could I not attend her funeral, I  couldn’t visit the place where her remains are. It was a bleak, desperate feeling. To be honest for a few moments, I’d have given anything for a cuddle from my Mum or  Dad.

But they weren’t there.  Due to corronavirus I am  prevented from seeing them, just as the virus prevented me from attending Lyn’s funeral or going in to the cemetery. Yet it’s somehow alright, according to this government, for a public official to drive 200 miles for no good reason, even though he was infected. Sorry, but watching this snivelling piece of scum justify himself last night, blatantly lying his head  off, just hours after I had felt probably the bleakest emotion I had ever experienced, made my blood boil with rage. Do they not realise what the rest of us are going through, or do these people just not give a fuck?

I See

I can’t bear to  write anything about the utter farce UK politics  has descended into this evening, but this just about sums it up…

barnard castle

Charles Hazlewood on Desert Island Disks

This week’s castaway on Desert Island Disks was Charles Hazlewood.  I emailed Charles a few weeks ago to tell him Lyn had passed away. He talks about the Paraorchestra on the show, although he doesn’t mention Lyn, probably quite rightly. It’s  an  interesting, bittersweet program in which Charles reveals the truth about his horrific childhood, and can  be listened to  here.

The Bouzouki Player

One  of the things I most associate with Lyn’s bungalow in  Charlton is a large painting which hung in the passage  leading to her living room. It was of a man sitting at a table playing a Bouzouki, and hung in the same spot since  long before I met Lyn. I’m not sure how she came by it, but it suited her musician’s personality well. Living there for almost ten years, I walked passed it every day; it felt like an innate part of the house. I remember  when Mum first visited us in Charlton, she commented  on the picture, telling Lyn how I had Greek relatives who used to play Bouzouki.

Lyn’s place in Charlton has now stood empty and quiet for some time. Paulo has been there to look after things and feed Guy, and I’ve been visiting  him, but it isn’t the same. Without Lyn there, going there makes me feel down. When I last visited, though, Paulo told me that the council would probably soon get rid of Lyn’s things, so I asked if I could have the painting. It is such a wonderful image, intertwined so  fundamentally with my memories of my life with Lyn, that the thought of it just being scrapped was too sad  to contemplate.

Paulo said I could have it, so yesterday Serkan went and brought it here. We’ll hang it later today. That has made me very happy indeed: this momento of lyn and her wonderful life is now here. It feels like a fragment of that life has now been brought into my new one.. I’ll now be able to  look at it every day, remember the passage where it once hung, and the incredible person who owned it.

Lyn’s Sixtieth Birthday

Yesterday was quite a sad day: it would have been Lyn’s sixtieth birthday. I didn’t post an entry because I didn’t know how to mark it, or indeed whether I should. Her passing still feels very raw, and I kept thinking about Lyn all day. Of course, she would not have wanted me to get down and gloomy about it, and would probably have preferred us to celebrate by playing lots of music; yet the truth is yesterday didn’t feel like a day for a party. Lyn’s passing feels like it has left a gaping void, not just in my life but in many others’; this wonderful, fascinating, creative personality is suddenly no longer there. It is an absence which I suspect I’ll feel for a long, long time.

HBD Dad

Today I’d like to wish my dad a very happy birthday. Complete nonse that I am, though, I totally forgot about  it, and it took me a few moments to twig why dad was listing so many things he   had received from my brothers in our (currently) daily  webcam chat. I hope he has an excellent  day all the same. Recent events have made it clear how dear him (and mum) are to me.

That means, though, that tomorrow would have been Lyn’s sixtieth. To be honest I feel rather down about it: These days, I try to keep my  spirits up, but thinking about all the excellent Twenty-Firsts of May we had over the last twelve  years won’t make that easy. Either  way I’ll probably raise a glass to both dad and Lyn this evening.

Happy birthday Dad.