Last Monday I was advised by the NHS that I am a high-risk patient and I should self-isolate for 12 weeks. This was confirmed by my cancer team – no surprises there. Thankfully I have neighbours who are food shopping for me.

Notice from the NHS about self-isolation.

I was supposed to return to the UK in April for a medical review with my consultant and to get the car MOT’d but with the lockdown and cancelled ferry booking, that ain’t happening. Thankfully MOTs are suspended for 6 months from the end of March and the ferry company has issued a voucher for when they start running ferries again. I’m happy to spend the time in Spain while it’s warn and usually sunny, but dreading when it gets really hot. I have no air con.

Today is my 3rd day of isolation out of 12 * 7 days = 84. About 3.6% of the way through.

What am I to do?

There’s plenty, actually.

I’m learning Spanish reasonably quickly using an excellent application called Duolingo. It’s fun as well. Do check it out.

I’ve also started Hilary Mantel’s A Place of Greater Safety. You can buy a copy here.

As ever, I practice playing the darbuka (or tabla) and the neighbours are not bothered about the noise, which makes a change. This is one of my darbukas (I have three):

A Hossam Ramzy Signature Series Tabla

I’ve picked up techniques from around the web and I have an excellent instructional video by Faisal Zedan. It’s called Derbekki Fundamentals.

Apart from that I use various messaging services and applications to keep in touch with friends and family, keep up with the news, watch movies, listen to music, etc., to which I can only say: thank goodness for the Internet. Let’s hope it doesn’t fail during this crisis.

Stay safe, and watch out for zombies.

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