My Corona – Parting is such sweet sorrow and other rants

“Gilly Oh golly, how I love my lolly, Down to the very last lick, But when you are through with it, what can you do with it, All you have left is the stick. When you come to the end of a lollipop, To the end, to the end, of a lollipop, When you come to the end of a lollipop, Plop goes your heart!” Max Bygraves Max hit the right note. So, we come to the end of this particular lollipop.  I am not sure how many hearts will go ‘plop’ but I certainly think I have nothing much left to lick. Indeed, as we come to the end of this particular iteration of the pandemic I feel that continuing to blog ‘My Corona’ would be a bit like che

My Corona – Mississippi Swamp Dogs

“One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain.” Bob Marley Live Music Rules, OK? Live Music!  It’s a joy on any occasion but after months of exclusion from the delight of the shared enjoyment of sitting in a room with like-eared folk, supping beer and wine and engaging with sounds coming from real people instead of flickering screens, a proper gig this week was just shivers down the spine time. Suddenly, there’s a skip (metaphorically for those of you that know me) in my step: a skip of hope, really.  I have two socially distanced live theatre evenings booked, including Becket’s ‘Happy Days’ at the newly refurbished Riverside Studios in Hammersmith.  T

My Corona – Plundered History. Stolen Culture.

“There are so many ways of being despicable it quite makes one’s head spin. But the way to be really despicable is to be contemptuous of other people’s pain.” James Baldwin The Plundered City If you are fortunate to be standing in a museum to study one of the glorious Benin bronzes in the UK you could be in London, Oxford, Glasgow, Belfast or any one of the 45 institutions with artifacts from that historical Nigerian city. In Europe you could be in Oslo, Paris, Stockholm, Barcelona, Vienna or Berlin.  In fact, 25 museums in Germany have Benin Bronzes. In America and Canada the number is around 40.  All in all, as there are 161 museums or galleries around the world with items from

My Corona – Africa

“A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.” Marcus Garvey That Covid reading blockage With all the extra time available during the various Lock Downs of the past year or so, I had a fantastic opportunity for reading, which I utterly failed to utilise.  Apparently in common with so many others, the ability to concentrate and read seemed to desert me completely me for several months. Hardly able to read anything for longer than three minutes, blogging became my replacement activity. So, recently it has been such a joy to rediscover my mojo and to see that pile of unread books, glowering on my coffee table with silent

My Corona – Me Radio Live

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time.  Clown: Good Madonna, why mournest thou? Olivia: Good Fool, for my brother's death. Clown: I think his soul is in hell, Madonna. Olivia: I know his soul is in heaven, Fool. Clown: The more fool, Madonna, to mourn for your brother's soul being in heaven. -William Shakespeare, Twelth Night Phone In Radio Good Morning and welcome to the new radio programme “Me, Today, L

My Corona – April is the cruellist month

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time.  “April is the cruellest month, breeding Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing Memory and desire, stirring Dull roots with spring rain.” T S Eliot When T S Eliot wrote his opening to The Waste Land he was pondering the cycle of death and rebirth, fertility and sterility and the impotence of desire. I, on the other hand, was thinking more about how bloody cold it has bee

My Corona – Feeling grateful

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time.  “A Joyful spirit is evidence of a grateful heart.” Maya Angelou Grateful & mellow with a touch of funk I am going to start this week’s blog with a simple thank you to the NHS staffers and volunteers who enabled my second AstraZeneca vaccine this week. My jabs have been administered through my GP’s who are based in the Chiswick Health Centre in Fishers lane, soon to be demolished to enable a m

My Corona – It’s Opening Time & Kick Off in the Fresh Air

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time.  “We have not met before. If I hear you shouting for anything else again, I will penalise you. This is not soccer.” Nigel Owens – rugby referee Community Sports As this week sees many of us joyfully running into the open arms of the nearest publican, in my case far more of a priority than the barbers, probably the more important relaxation of restrictions for the Nation’s physical health are those ar

My Corona – Forget 1984 – 2024 is coming

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time.  “The question of the next generation will not be one of how to liberate the masses, but rather, how to make them love their servitude.”  Aldous Huxley A comic fantasy or a brave new post Covid world? The summer evening glow shifts into shadow. Gradually, clock and heart stoppingly slow, true darkness descends. Of course, along Chiswick High Street, the night only nominally takes over becaus

My Corona – Another Year Another Life

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time.  “She speaks in a voice almost too low to be heard over the music. But I hear her – I always did. “Who are you, George?” “Someone you knew in another life, honey.” Stephen King Bringing back memories – my first ten days under Lock Down last March, according to my daily blog Day 1 – Tuesday 24th of March On the first day, I started what were to be themes that co

My Corona – Deja Vue all over again

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time.  “Looks like nothing's gonna change Everything still remains the same I can't do what ten people tell me to do So I guess I'll remain the same, listen…… “ Otis Redding The Bell Strikes One So, little did I know exactly a year on since the start of the first Lock Down that I would still be blogging about my Covid experiences. I posted just about everyday for the first four months, clocking in wel

My Corona – #proudofourkids

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time.  “Culture does not make people. People make culture. If it is true that the full humanity of women is not our culture, then we can and must make it our culture.” Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie #proudofourkids Last week’s blog was on the theme of #proudofourkids and ‘local girl made good’ and this week’s is the same ……. But with a difference. After all, what exactly is local in this modern world o

My Corona – Local girl done good

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time. Images above: Dr Claire Petros, with sea turtles A robin redbreast in a cage Puts all heaven in a rage William Blake If there has anything that I can look back on over the last Covid year as contributing to my maintaining a modicum of sanity it has been the humour, gossip and occasional abuse of old friends. Organised zooms, old fashioned ‘phone calls and even the ubiquitous Whatsapp group chats have all forme

My Corona – To everything there is a season

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time. Image above: Egyptian geese in Ravenscourt Park “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, a time to reap that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn,

My Corona – with apologies to Samuel Beckett

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time. “Talking about things that are understandable only weighs down the mind.” Alfred Jarry Be careful what you wait for - a stab at literary satire Back in the day (1970 to 1984) the BBC had a regular, award winning live theatre series called Play for Today. The list of writers and directors who honed their skills on those programmes is like a roll call of the greats of the British film and television ind

Chiswick Reconfined – Lockdown 3: Now is the winter of our discontent

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time. “Thou knowest, winter tames man, woman, and beast.” William Shakespeare This weather is more like winters past! My view of the featureless cold sky brings no cheer to my spirit. As I stand gazing into the middle distance like some lonely sentinel from days of yore (or Game of Thrones, same thing) I imagine that the windows to my flat’s balcony look over a medieval castle yard. I throw away my NHS crutch; bunch m

Chiswick Reconfined – Lockdown 3: From the Mundane to the Magical

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time. “I intend to live forever, or die trying” Groucho Marx From the Mundane to the Magical It's already almost a year since I started writing about my experience of living in Chiswick during a pandemic and sometimes I kind of forget the original purpose of the blog. Logically, when I started I could have anticipated the potential length of time this would be go on but it never really seemed likely. Emotionally it would have be

Chiswick Reconfined – Lockdown 3: Going Walkabout

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time. “A cold Ravenscourt Park was calling one day Though the rain coldly poured down I gazed at the bacon, as it greasily lay On its roll, white, crusty nor brown. My memory took me to much warmer days Of safaris not a West London glade, Of a hippopotamus, no ignoramus who sang me this sweet serenade Mud, mud, glorious mud Nothing quite like it for cooling the blood So follow me, follow Do

Chiswick Reconfined – Lockdown 3: Perking up for Burns Night

Chiswick Reconfined – Lockdown 3: #moodweird

Chiswick Reconfined – Lockdown 3: Thank You NHS

During the first lockdown period in March 2020, Keith Richards started writing the My Corona blog for The Chiswick Calendar – a mix of his observations from his daily constitutionals and the quiet enjoyment of his record collection. Since then he has continued to document the every day occurrences of this most peculiar time. These are the hands That touch us first Feel your head Find the pulse And make your bed. These are the hands That tap your back Test the skin Hold your arm Wheel the bin Change the bulb Fix the drip Pour the jug Replace your hip. Michael Rosen Nipping in for a quick op It’s been a while. In fact, three

Chiswick Reconfined – ‘Twas the blog before Christmas

Chiswick Reconfined – A night with the Blues Engineers

Chiswick Unbound – A return to rugby

Chiswick Reconfined – Lockdown getting us down

Chiswick Reconfined – The Fog of Lock Down

Chiswick Reconfined – Lockdown 2: How is it for you?

Chiswick Reconfined – Lockdown fatigue?

Keith Richards, writer and resident of Chiswick, documented the first Corona lock down, living on his own, in a weekly blog from 24 March to 7 July 2020 called Chiswick Confined – My Corona. Then he was free to roam at will and the blog mutated into Chiswick Unbound. Now it's reverted to Chiswick Re-Confined, at least until 2 December. Image above: Born to Run album cover “The light from the oncoming train focuses the mind.” Bruce Springsteen Lockdown fatigue or something else? I have read some commentators using the reference to the film Ground Hog Day but, actually, it’s not. Clearly, this is different to the first Lockdown. It is early days in the ‘maybe a month, maybe not, it’s a nuclear option, b

Chiswick Confined – again 

Keith Richards, writer and resident of Chiswick, documented the first Corona lock down, living on his own, in a weekly blog from 24 March to 7 July 2020 called Chiswick Confined – My Corona. Then he was free to roam at will and the blog mutated into Chiswick Unbound. Now it's reverted to Chiswick Confined, until 2 December at least. “Culture makes people understand each other better. And if they understand each other better in their soul, it is easier to overcome the economic and political barriers. But first they have to understand that their neighbor is, in the end, just like them, with the same problems, the same questions.” Paulo Coelho Celebrating the dead It is a gloomy autumn afternoon, darker than normal as rain-laden c

Tier 2 – Nigeria, the End #SARS & Anti-Corruption Protests