Operation Oysterhood: 4 November

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

— @HaggardHawks

My dear friend Erika once told me that you should not judge people by the way they make you feel when you are with them, but by the way they make you feel once they are no longer in your company. When I joined the Zoom board meeting I was supposed to last night, I was exhausted and just wanted to get to bed. But an hour later, the people participating in the virtual encounter, with all their care and enthusiasm for the project we are all involved in, made me feel energised and inspired. And this although Salieri decided – right in the beginning of the meeting – to use the litter tray in the guest bathroom next door (highly unusual for her, she usually goes only when it is raining – otherwise she does her business outside in the garden). Five minutes into the meeting, the smells that were coming from the bathroom were so strong, I really struggled to focus. But I did not know how to explain to the others what had happened … Needless to say, the house had to be aired before I went to bed.


US election night.

Pistachio ice-cream and red wine in the night. Hearty breakfast in the morning. Even if Biden wins, which is gradually beginning to look like a tiny possibility, the fact that it is still not a done deal means that millions of people voted for a psychopath to rule over them for another four years – it is impossible not to despair.

Psychopaths are not always easy to recognise, but once you have had one ruin your life, you will be able to smell them from afar, even if Covid deprives you of your sense of smell. Their stink of destruction is unmistakable. And yet, they manage to do what they do because of their excellent powers of manipulation and gaslighting, and both are on display at the White House in ways that are deeply, deeply distressing. And it is hard not to take it personally. Not when so much is at stake.

Salieri was not much help with my work today (I suppose someone had to catch up on the lost sleep last night …), but I managed to get through a mountain of it before it was time to light a fire and braai a simple dinner for my love. A soothing fire and a glass of red wine: balm for the soul on a day like today.

And now: I am going to watch some TV, checking up on the results every now and then. I haven’t given up hope for a Biden/Harris win, but I have given up on the millions of Americans who have fallen for the psychopath’s lies and manipulations. It’s bad enough when it happen to you on a small scale, but it is disastrous on a scale like this.

Be kind. Wear a mask. Support local.

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


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