Update: This Lime Tree Bower My Prison…

Hey everyone, just a quick update today. 

As you may know, I’m based in Auckland, New Zealand – the land (one of several) who beat COVID. As some may know, the Rona is back over here for a sequel – and we’re all in lockdown again. 

If anyone is wondering, seeing I held up the Belzoni blog and podcast episode because I lost my voice due to a nasty cold – I was tested just before the lockdown. One of my flatmates brought some kind of virus into the house, then claimed his doctor told him he didn’t need a COVID test. Figuring either he was a liar, or his doctor incompetent – I got myself checked out. It was just a cold.

All the same, as the locations of interest have come up in the news this time, I’ve had six close calls (being at places COVID infected people were at hours before) and am, it appears, surrounded by what the media has dubbed ‘The Birkdale Social Cluster’. 

I feel a little silly when writing about COVID. New Zealand has had a comparatively easy ride compared to much of the world. In the scheme of things I’ve got little to complain about… 

But I did post that update with the plague mask picture a few weeks ago… So I figured some kind of update was in order. And yeah, following the example of Dolly Parton and Elvis Presley (pictured getting his polio shot on the set of the Ed Sullivan Show in 1956) I’ll be getting my first vaccine shot in a little over a week (New Zealand has been slow to roll the vaccination out)

Anyway, the lockdown does give me a little bit of extra time – no weekend shopping expeditions, or meals over at my parents’ place. No Thursday night foodcourt Chinese meal followed by grocery shopping. Certainly no Wednesday night pub quizzes till we’re a couple of lockdown levels down. 

The day job just ticks along, however. I’ve been a work from home person for almost three years now, so the 9 to 5 is very much business as usual. 

Given all that, I’m working away at a couple of extra things. 

First, I’m spending weekends building up a stockpile of podcast episodes. I suffer from seasonal hay fever, so it’s guaranteed I will lose my voice again – some time in the future. I’m looking to record around two dozen of the older blog posts – will keep a handful in reserve + mix the others in with new episodes as we go. 

On that I’m getting the sense those of y’all following the blog are as a rule not following the podcast – and vice versa. On those weeks where I drop an old episode I’ll generally drop a completely new blog post for my readers. 

Second, I’m going to look to get weekly blog posts back up again + start stockpiling a few of those Tales, once I’ve got the podcast episodes well ahead. I’m putting a temporary hold on my ‘Today in history’ one minute video series. When I put the ‘pilot’ up on my personal Facebook, I got some really positive feedback from friends who aren’t history buffs – I can see a place in the world for that project – but it is taking away from this project at the moment so…  

I’m still trying to work out how to get those Patreon episode scripts on here, please stay tuned for that. Next week’s Tale, and Patreon bonus episode are well on track for release. I’ll look to get a non-podcast week blog post in for the week after that – I want to try something a little different on those in between weeks. 

Stay safe out there everyone. I’ll have a new Tale out next week – Simone.


Oh, the silly post title and picture? In 1797 the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge – trapped in his bedroom with a blistered foot due to his wife dropping a pot of hot milk on him – wrote a wonderfully melodramatic poem about not being able to go out on a trek with his friends. I believe there is more to it, truthfully – Mrs Coleridge had just suffered a miscarriage and I always got the sense the two were fighting at the time. If no underlying story it does make Mr Coleridge a rather melodramatic guy I’d dare say…

Well, they are gone, and here must I remain,
This lime-tree bower my prison! I have lost
Beauties and feelings, such as would have been
Most sweet to my remembrance even when age
Had dimm’d mine eyes to blindness!….. “

The picture is of his library, from an article from some time back. His former mansion was up for sale last year for £7 million. The Devon property also of note as it was where Oliver Cromwell planned his revolution.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s