In the Empty City

City Square, the would-be bustling hub of Leeds, at prime shopping time and the place is deserted apart from some trees and the Black Prince.
Admin1 is rereading Dead Lions by Mick Herron. Admin2 is reading The Dark by Emma Haughton, a juvenile mystery/romance, wasted on the locked room/powder keg setting of an Antarctic research station in winter.
Today was the warmest day this year: 23.2 °C.
The next day was cloudy and cool. We ate pork, veg and rice with the newlyweds and scored 11 on the GSQ after a lot of guesswork and bet-hedging.

Ten Years After

It has been ten years since we started uploading annual May Day pics of the garden after whatever weather was earlier. During that time the rain and sun have waxed and waned and the tulips and bluebells have slugged it out; tulips in the ascendant this year after an April that was our fourth sunniest April ever and not so showery.
Admin1 is reading A Killing in November by Simon Mason — another unpleasant protagonist whom the author works hard to make sympathetic. Not really successful at humour, and side issues (refugees, jihadists) not explored adequately. But readable.
Admin2 is reading Companion Piece by Ali Smith, which features an imaginary female character who is A Smith.
We had the pleasure of Gez in the flesh for the first time since Mother’s Day and scored, oh dear, worst this year, 7 on the GSQ.

Easter Eggs

Magpies have built a fine nest next to our house (apparently magpies nest next to humans to keep away their crow kin) and today Admin1 sent up the drone to look for blue eggs or fluffy chicks, but they had built a roof and the tree was in leaf so no luck.
Meanwhile Admin1 had his first stab at making a Battenburg cake which turned out extremely well. A lovely meal was had by all and we scored 11 on the GSQ.
Admin1 is reading The Stone Chamber by Kate Ellis and Admin2 is reading Rewind by Catherine Ryan Howard, which was extremely implausible.

Pie Day

Actually Pi Day was yesterday but we were unable to entertain the family due to fears of exposure to covid. Today, though, covid was confirmed so all those lovely pies were bisected and transported. We had our family meal on Zoom and scored 10 on the quiz with points for vague answers in the right ballpark.
Admin1 is reading Right to Kill by John Barlow. Admin2 is rereading A Maze of Death by Philip K Dick.

Storm Franklin

Oh no, not another one!
It was a dark and stormy night and the morning saw broken branches everywhere and two trees up the road felled. Our sheltered weather station recorded a gust of 34 mph (there might have been worse ones — it is only working intermittently) and we are well on track for our rainiest month ever.
The wind died away and Orion shone down on us. Our family meal was a magnificent cheese pithivier and we scored a sad 8.5 on the GSQ.
Admin2 is reading Snap by Belinda Bauer, a light read about a thieving orphan searching for his mother’s murderer.

Critters of the Day: Starlings

Welcome to these two representatives of a great and greedy flock, dull at a distance but spangled with iridescent sequins in close-up.
Admin2 is rereading Next to Nature, Art by Penelope Fitzgerald; arty people arrive for a course at a country house before the age of social media.
We scored FOURTEEN  on the GSQ; 14.5 if you count a narrow miss, which we didn’t.

Ghost Town

Distant skyscrapers dematerialising in the fog. Despite the mist and fog all day, the solar panels produced more energy than yesterday with its constant dazzling sunshine.
Admin1 is reading Dead Ground by MW Craven. Admin2 was reading The Incendium Plot by AD Swanston but gave up halfway through because it was boring and unpleasant. Radcliff is an Elizabethan lawyer with a bent finger but he ain’t no Shardlake, bro.
We scored 9.5 on the GSQ, which was not too bad considering.

Good Morning

Same old view of the sun coming up through the back window. The sky was full of flocks of birds which flew away before they could be photographed.
We had roast lamb followed by two kinds of carrot cake and a banana cake for our New Year family meal and scored 11 on the GSQ. Now is the time to tot up our average score for the past year, which was … badum tish … 11.73921568: our best ever, cf last year and all the years before.
Admin1 is reading The Heron’s Cry by Ann Cleeves (thx Admin2). Admin2 is reading The Strange Disappearance of a Bollywood Star by Vaseem Khan. Gotta get those books back to the library soon.