I know I’ve been a bit absent recently. That’s partly because I’m not doing any gardening at the moment, but also because we’ve just had the most stressful 8 weeks imaginable.

It started on the 21st of October when Peter’s computer got infected with a hideous virus, despite all the security features we have installed.

He struggled manfully for about 10 days to fix it himself, but no joy. Finally we called in the professionals and a chap called to take the computer away to be mended.

Needless to say he didn’t ring with an up date when he’d said he would, and we wondered if we would ever see him again. Then as if things weren’t bad enough, my mum passed away on 31.10.09.  Not entirely unexpected as she was almost 90 years old and very frail.

Then on 02.11.09 my dad was evacuated from the nursing home where they had both lived due to severe flooding. They would have been married for 68 years at the end of November.

As she and my dad lived in Scotland the funeral meant a 3 day trip away from home. I don’t travel well. I went by train, a 7 hour journey. The funeral was on 11.11.09 and on my return the computer man was just in the final stages of removing the virus, second attempt.

We were just settling down  and looking forward to a few days of  peace and quiet when we lost our internet connection. It came back intermittently and then a few days later the telephone landline disappeared as well.

Dealing with our service provider was a nightmare and yet more stress. I’m sure everyone has had experience of  Indian call centres. Need I say more?

Finally on 24.11.09 a very nice engineer from BT called and traced the problem to a fault in a box on the local telegraph pole.

At last things were beginning to look up and settle down. (Peter says I like doing things in ‘directions’)

But no, the last straw happened on 16.12.09 when we lost our beloved Dulcie following a long illness.

Between you and me I’ll be glad to see the back of 2009.