Nearing the end of lockdown Week 3, we have reached Good Friday. (By our reckoning the two weeks preceding the lockdown were the edgiest, so that makes it five strange and anxious weeks so far.) Undoubtedly our greatest boon has been working daily on the allotment, pictured before we dug up the leeks. No less an authority than Michael Gove in Week 1, declared this to be an acceptable outdoor activity, and we have been taking full advantage. The worms must be surprised by my unusually regular appearances at the end of a fork.
Another solace, unexpected in its intensity, has been Radio 3’s new non-live schedules, revised so speedily that they appeared in print in the Radio Times as soon as the lockdown started. (I’ve always imagined this rather dough-y publication is compiled months ahead. Or that was always the excuse at the BBC when you tried to do something last-minute.) Out of the rich heap of archive performances hastily unearthed, I particularly recall listening, quite enthralled, to Beethoven’s Op 109 played by veteran Viennese pianist Rudolf Buchbinder – something I would probably not have made time for in ‘real life’.