Operation Oysterhood: Day Forty-Nine

OYSTERHOOD is reclusiveness or solitude, or an overwhelming desire to stay at home.



Your Honour, the Mermaid made me do it! And I hope that all the Water Spirits of the world, especially of the dry Cape, will forgive me my water-sinning last night. I was desperate.

After the President’s address, which I, unlike many others, found pitch-perfect, I was torn between gratitude and anxiety: gratitude for the now, anxiety for the near and distant future. I understand that it could have been much, much worse, and I am grateful for the lockdown with all its imperfections and blunders, but the high infection and death numbers in the Cape are deeply depressing and do not bode well for our future in Cape Town. Like the President said, every number is a life – a life surrounded by loved ones and dreams. Illness and loss precipitated by something as simple as a conversation with a friend… It is tragic.

Mr Mozart, once again, knew that he was needed and sat with me throughout the address and then watched over me late into the night. He allowed me to kiss his head and hug him after the President had said that bit about kisses and hugs being things of the past…


I watched Cyril Ramaphosa apologise to the nation and felt humbled. I cannot imagine what it must feel to have this burden on one’s shoulders. How does he sleep at night?

I fell asleep sometime after midnight, and slept deeply, but when I woke up just before six a.m., I found it impossible to open my eyes for nearly two hours. One of those days when I did not want to face the world. Eventually, when I did, I was rewarded with the sight of the Cat Ladies sleeping peacefully next to each other at the bottom of the bed. And they allowed me to join them for a while.


Coffee, some reading, and then work, work, work (plus headache) until the end of the day with only a short break for lunch.

My first book delivery of the level four lockdown arrived via courier in the morning, a most fitting title, me thinks…


But the most exciting book news of the day belongs to the breath-takingly beautiful Charlotte!


Helen’s debut novel – sheer joy! One day, soon, we will hold her in our hands, and she will be hugged and kissed and treasured. Even if we won’t be able to hug her author for the foreseeable future – the book will have to stand in for Helen.

Dear Helen, if you are reading this, please know that we will throw a huge party for Charlotte when it is safe and allowed to do so, and we will celebrate in style. Until then, I send you and Charlotte love and some flowers from my Mom’s garden:

Congratulations and HAPPY PUBLICATION DAY, dear Friend!

Be kind to yourself. Be kind to others. Stay at home.

“Physical distancing remains one of the key strategies to curb this pandemic.”


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