I wasn’t going to drink wine tonight but a courageous trip to Marks & Spencer put paid to that!  Been dreading it all day – and the fact that I had to fill up at the garage en route …  Apparently, the petrol pump has a major role to play in spreading the virus.  Thankfully, they supply flimsy gloves but I was taking no chances.  Brain engaged, I waited for the shop to clear of youths (I had another word in mind but …) in their bedroom attire – joggers and hoody?  Bedroom attire, I am reliably informed!  Anyway, glove off to put my card in, on again to key in my pin and off again to remove my card.  Did it!  What about the receipt, though?

The complexities of gleaning everyday supplies.  It’s like rocket science!  Venturing into Marks & Spencer, after 5, there were few cars about.  One glove on – to push the trolley – leaving the other hand free to select items (there is a limit!), it seemed that the other shoppers had no thought about the two metres social distancing!  Honestly, I had to keep re-jigging my route as they, brazenly, invaded my space.  Why?  Irresistible, I may be, but, in the midst of a pandemic, resist! 

Manny, meanwhile, had disappeared as I packed numerous bags in an attempt to negate another visit.  Toilet roll?  What do you think?  Oh well.  Have wine, gin and lager.  ‘Que sera sera, whatever will be will be … ‘

Manny subscribes to Amazon Prime so, on descending the stairs, this morning, he was sipping his coffee while watching an episode of The Grand Tour.  Jeremy Clarkson!  How could I have forgotten him?  I love Jeremy Clarkson and I have always considered him a ‘must have’ guest at any imaginary dinner party of mine!  So …  Dinner for 11, it is, and I think I shall place myself at the top of the table with Jeremy Clarkson on one side of me and … Prince Philip on the other!  Oh, my goodness.  That would be my idea of heaven!  Can you imagine?  Three ‘no filters’!  I can only surmise that these, two, would get on famously and I would so love to be the third wheel.  Pop?  How you would appreciate the opportunity to observe such a gift!

I wonder what Jeremy would think of my Google Analytics statistics?  Apparently, China constitutes 0.8% of my readership and, as of last night, United Arab Emirates, 1.6%.  How does that work?  What is 0.8% in China?  Is that one person? One and a half people?  What?  The mind boggles?  More to the point, how does anybody in China come across Trish-Trash.com?  Amazing.  They say the world moves in mysterious ways.

No exercise, today, and I regret that.  Somehow, chores seem to take over and that shouldn’t be the case.  However, here I am with both offspring in situ and, once again, I have assumed responsibility for washing, cleaning, food etc, etc.  Thankfully, as I have mentioned, Manny is happy to assume the role of chef but only with that which is provided.  He does pour my wine, though – as does Becca, to be fair!

Help!  Break for dinner and persuaded to watch The Great Celebrity Bake Off.  Not something I am prone to watch, Becca encouraged me with the line-up: James Blunt, Alex Jones (One Show) and Alison Hammond – to name but three.  It was so boring!  Disappointing!  Whatever one would like to call it.  No interaction and a competitiveness of spirit which dampened all humour – apart from Alex, who tried her best and was naturally inept at baking.  Warmed to her even more.  James, meanwhile – roots in the army – was predictable in that he was determined to do everything to his best ability and focus!  No.  Boring!  As for Alison Hammond, she is hysterical on This Morning but had no opportunity to shine, here.  Anything else?  Not a huge fan of Prue Leith, I have no understanding of Noel Fielding!  Is he/she supposed to be funny? Sandi Toksvig, I have met, and is an intellectual force with which to be reckoned – and wit – but she, too, was very much understated.  Then, there is Paul Hollywood … Yuck!  He makes my skin crawl!  Boorish and arrogant, his piercing blue contact lenses are mirrors to his soul – or lack of it!  How he has managed to get where he is is a testament to the shallow nature of television.  Mind you, he has stood on the shoulders of many more acclaimed to climb the ladder.  He is the reason I never – have never – watched that programme.  No change there, then …

So, there you have it.  Another synopsis of my evening’s television viewing.  Not of my choosing.  Funnily enough, on Sunday night, I decided we should watch a Robin Williams film.  Mrs Doubtfire remains in a class of its own but I was aware of his other films, each with a message.  The guy was a troubled genius with a huge heart and his work reflected that.  I remember hearing of his sudden death in August 2014.  Like so many, I was shocked and saddened.  He had always been there; a part of my life; more importantly, my children’s lives.  A force for good.  Anyway, I made a point of going out and buying DVDs of all his films with a view to watching them, one day.  On Sunday, I chose Dead Poets’ Society …. Set in a boys’ boarding school in the late 50s, it is an accurate representation of schools, of that genre, which exist to this day – both teachers and pushy parents instantly recognisable!  Embedded in tradition, the winds of change are not welcomed.  So it was with Robin Williams’ character, John Keating.  Himself, a former pupil at the school, he returns to teach English in his own inimitable style.  ‘Carpe diem’ is his mantra as he encourages his pupils to ‘make your lives extraordinary.’  In time, he touches each and every one of them, recognising their particular strengths and fears but, in doing so, he challenges the authority of the parents who have the paths of their sons, already, carved in stone, regardless..  The tragedy which ensues – followed by the injustice of Mr Keating’s dismissal – has one question the power of good.  The ending, however, is a celebration of that quintessential teacher one will never forget; to whom one owes so much – each of us has one – and, as Mr Keating gathers his things, the shy boy who, once. could not even contemplate reading aloud, leads his fellow-pupils in a moving tribute to the teacher they have grown to love but were powerless to save.  Climbing onto their desks, they, each, shout out, “Oh, Captain! My Captain!”, in acknowledgement of his legacy.  Meanwhile, standing in the doorway, the warmth and sadness in the eyes of John Keating is that of Robin Williams.  The absolute genius with a heart of gold.  Deserving of every accolade.

Well, would you know?!  Start me on Robin Williams and I am off!  I love his work and his heart.  I am dying to read his biography – when Manny finishes it.  Meanwhile, his words are an inspiration and embedded in the ethos and very spirit of Trish-Trash.com.  Remember …

You’re only given a little spark of madness and, if you lose that, you’re nothing.’ 

The wonderful, unforgettable genius that was Robin Williams.

This is Trish, signing off.