Etched Behind Eyelids | January 2021
January brought a third lockdown for England, and so the month has been another quiet one. Thankfully both Birmingham Botanical Gardens and Winterbourne have remained open throughout the latest lockdown, so at least I can enjoy the grounds. I have been walking lots this month to compensate for the gym and the pool being closed, but my walks are pretty uninspiring as we’re in the dead of winter at the moment. Still, the days are getting longer and the vaccination programme is under way, so I try to remain hopeful. It won’t be this bleak forever. I keep reminding myself.
One Friday afternoon in early January I took myself for a long walk and a visit to Winterbourne to get out of the flat (and free up our internet) while Ed taught a lesson to his Year 9s (age 14) via video call. The start of the month was very cold, so although we didn’t have any snow the ground was covered in frost which made for some pretty scenes.
Watching Pom Poko with Minou. Ed fell asleep, the fantastical elements of talking racoon dogs bouncing on their testicles is too much for his literal mind to cope with.
I am trying a new food for Minou. She has kidney disease and pancreatitis. Many of the vet approved renal foods have grains in them, but Minou can’t eat grains because they give her an upset stomach (her IBD and pancreatitis are likely linked). She really loves wet food and I have been letting her eat regular supermarket pouches recently, just to get some calories into her, but really wanted to find wet food that was renal appropriate for the long term. She is on Animonda Integra Protect Renal for her dry food, and the wet food we’re trying is made by Concept for Life. I buy them both from Zooplus (no affiliation, I am sharing this information to help others who have cats with kidney disease and/or pancreatitits in case it is of use). Minou loves her new food, which is a relief because I bought 24 tins of the stuff! One tin is 200g, and lasts three days as she eats wet food with dry.
A visit to Winterbourne. We’ve been taking our own drinks in a flask since the café is closed.
There are few things in life that make me happier than seeing and hearing Ed sing and play guitar in the evenings.
One of the peacocks parading outside the tropical house at Birmingham Botanical Gardens.
A display at Winterbourne.
We had heavy snow towards the end of January. It transformed the city centre from wasteland to wonderland for twenty four beautiful hours, and then turned to dirty slush and ice. It was good while it lasted though.
The Roundhouse is one of my favourite buildings in Birmingham. It’s a performance and event space, although of course it’s shut at the moment.
Icknield Port Loop, or Mordor, as I like to think of it. It is thought by scholars that Tolkien’s Mordor was inspired by the chimney stacks of Birmingham and the Black Country.