Being mindful of supplies.
With ‘long-life’ milk, deliveries from a local community farm of fresh fruit, veg and meat, and ingredients to make our own hand sanitiser, we feel as equipped as we can be to deal with the weeks and months ahead. There are however, one or two challenges we will need to deal with along the way. Not all the pieces of the jigsaw are going to automatically fall into place. Some patience is going to be required and some adapting to this new way of life is going to be needed.
To set the scene, it is worth understanding that, for the ten years we have lived in our lovely, warm, cosy and homely first floor flat, we have coped more than adequately with an under-counter fridge that has a small ice-box. Okay, we have found it a challenge at Christmastime but we have met those challenges head on and beat them. But this current COVID-19 situation is something else; this has become a challenge we have had to tackle with a different kind of thinking, and things are not yet completely in place; there are still some weird shaped pieces of the puzzle required to complete the picture.
One of those pieces is a freezer. We are okay at the moment but the longer this situation continues, the greater the challenge will become through not having a freezer. As with many other requirements over the last few weeks, stocks and supplies have been disappearing from shelves and warehouses quicker than a lycra-clad jogger running up our street. A couple of weeks ago we ordered a small counter-top freezer from an online supplier; order accepted and money charged. We had got in just on time. So with the freezer situation sorted we placed our next order with the community farm, and this time it included a small meat box, thinking that we would be able to freeze some of it as the new freezer would be up and running by then. Wrong. An email informed us that the appliance we had ordered in good faith and our money taken, was now ‘out of stock’, despite it being available when the order had been placed. Some quick googling and we had found another supplier. Thankfully, the previous one had credited the cancelled order. This time rather than rely on the website of this new supplier, I phoned them. Yes, the model we were interested was in stock and could be delivered in a weeks time – a bit late for our meat order but we could deal with that. Closer to the delivery date, another email, this time one that began with the word, ‘sorry’. My heart started to sink. There was an issue with the online company’s supplier and our delivery would be delayed, and it would be changed from Tuesday to Monday…….the day before. Fine, I would be happy to accept that delay; I did phone to check and this change was correct. A couple of days later I received another email with the word ‘sorry’ jumping from the screen and slapping me across the face – yet another delay! This time the supplier issue has resulted in the delivery now being delayed until next Thursday. Stay tuned for the latest update – freezer or no freezer?…..to be continued.
On a similar theme – we haven’t eaten bread for over a week or so now, as we ran out. Not a particular problem in itself but we are beginning to realise how much we are missing it and how much a part of human life bread actually is. So, with the supermarket queues getting ever longer, and social-distancing and crowds being a concern, a bread-maker would be a good thing to have. Bread-maker ordered and received. Bread flour and yeast? Order placed, money taken, no delivery. A week or so later, order cancelled and money refunded. A new order is then placed with a reputable company that has, in addition to the online presence, a bricks and mortar business. This company has already provided us with cake-making ingredients. We are now expecting to take delivery of a 16kg(!) bag of bread-making flour and some yeast. That should keep the two of us in bread for a little while I think.
This new way of life is certainly making us think differently with regards to food supplies.