Never expected to be sharing my morning routine with Mr Motivator!!

Lockdown, March 2020, and my three Aquafit sessions a week that I’d been doing for three years (the only exercise I could manage with severe arthritis) disappeared into the pale blue yonder – and so too, very quickly, did my muscle tone! Boy, did I get cross with all those folk telling us to “get fit, go for a walk” …..I shouted quite a lot at the telly and radio!

Aquafit only restarted, once a week, at the end of November, 2020 – three sessions in and it’s closed again. The joy for me of the second lockdown, though, was I had a glorious new hip and could actually walk!! Yay!! What walking doesn’t do is help with muscle tone throughout your body. So….I asked Santa for four 1kg weights….

Then….what was I going to actually do! Mr Motivator to the rescue!!! Thought I’d try out a sitting routine in case it’s something you might need or like……the You Tube one posted on 14th December, 2020 is perfect! Sitting on the sofa wasn’t, though, you do need to be on a chair and to be able to stretch out your leg fully… table was in my way for a few of the routines.

Bloomin heck it’s a good work out! You don’t need the weights but if building muscle tone is your aim, they really help.

Go Mr M!!!! (and Mrs G!)….

Equilibrium restored!

Realised, thanks to all your generous comments and support, that by 6.00am this morning I had expected to have the house clean, tidy and clear of forty years of, um, stuff (polite phrase!), exercised and lost a stone, tamed my lockdown hair into some sort of style and be sitting relaxing in the perfect lounge wear I’m planning on making! Went back to bed…had a snooze….have started again!

As the sort of person that rushes into the future without a thought, having to redefine it felt unexpectedly hard- even though redundancy was my choice, unlike the situation for far too many people at the moment. When I was unexpectedly made redundant from a job I adored many, many years ago, it did feel like a bereavement, but making the choice myself would, I thought, redefine things. Silly old bat!

Oh well, Christmas sherry beckons and then maybe some sewing…..then a bubble lunch….it’s going to be a good one!

Day 3 of retirement – anyone got a map!

Oh my gosh – after the adrenaline rush of the last morning at work, then Christmas Eve present deliveries and a glorious Christmas Day in a smaller than usual family bubble, reality’s hit home with a vengeance! Feel REALLY lost! Up at 5.30am and now, a couple of hours later, wondering what on earth to do. Oddly nostalgic and very much aware of all that has been lost in the years of being distracted by work. Loved ones no longer with us; children very much grown up and, quite rightly, living their own lives; forgotten skills and hobbies (which to pick up again – now thats a challenge); a house full of memories that are suddenly flooding in. It’s very, very, weird!

Come to my on-air retirement party oh – and drop me a line to tell me how YOU coped!

06.00-10.00, GMT, on BBC Radio Solent will be quite a morning – feels a bit like a wake without the sausage rolls, but I get to hear the memories, blush and cry. Although what I really want to hear (privately, not on-air although I might ask if I can share your story on my website) is the truth from you about the first 6 months or so of your retirement. No cliches, no “you’ll wonder how you had time to go to work”, but how you coped without the structure of work and seeing colleagues and being home all day. Drop me a line at

One more sleep and I’m unemployed!

Getting a bit emotional – such wonderful messages today from listeners of BBC Radio Solent – it’s very humbling. Made me wonder what the point of the website is!! It’s not a business but I’m hoping it will become a community to chat, share stories, challenge perceptions of retirement and old age, help us all understand the world we live in a little better, whatever our age and circumstances. I always felt folk should never retire in case the brain cell got lazy – lets stay curious together!

Things that touch my heart

Sometimes you read something that makes you go “woah”! The story of the Burnley parish, so deprived, supported by their two pastors, and now the world. PLEASE read this – from BBC News

Moving on from the Utility Room!

Since lockdown (March, 2020), I’ve been broadcasting from the utility room! It’s pretty amazing that a few bits of equipment mean it’s as good as any BBC studio (although minus colleagues). I’m blooming’ lucky to have an area where it can be left out – a desk rather than an ironing board to put it on – my Great Granddad would be amazed!

I’ve been the voice of BBC Radio Solent’s early morning traffic bulletins for…oh gosh…about 20 years! For most of that time I’ve worked remotely from Broadcasting House – a guest of the Road Management System for Europe teams, first in Southampton and then in Winchester and been grateful to have been given a nest and make new friends in both locations.

Going to miss them….panic is setting in ….will I start talking to myself A LOT (worried about annoying husband, Peter at 5 o’clock in the morning when I’m used to getting up, too!).