Mercury is in Retrograde…

The past few weeks have been a bit tricky for our family with several travel, technical and home related mishaps.

The first mishap happened when I had gone with my daughter Laura to a hospital appointment related to her pregnancy. On his way to pick us up from the hospital her partner had a slight accident when the car in front stopped suddenly. Now the result of that little bump for the car in front, a Volvo was just a few scratches on its bumper but for Laura’s car it was a disaster! The entire front was a crumpled total mess…and in the end, an insurance write off!

Poor Laura! Not having a car has made life and especially work very difficult for her at an already stressful and tiring time in her life. So we added her to our insurance and have been sharing our car until she gets a replacement.

The second issue was with the front of our van.

As we had lent Laura our car, her partner gave us a lift up to where we store the van. We were off to Winchester and Eastleigh for a few days as it was our sister in laws 70’th birthday and we were also going to a John Ottaway gig.

Luckily, Arya noticed that something was hanging down loose at the front of the van. It was a sort of plastic cover for the under part of the engine and the screws that held it together had worked loose. God Bless him! He spent a good hour trying to fix it, but when we drove it, it came loose again. Finally we rang the garage who do the mechanical servicing of the van and they offered to help.

Good job we didn’t try risking driving south. It turned out that one of the brackets that support the anti roll bar which itself goes between the two front wheels, had broken. The “loose” anti roll bar had kept forcing the engine cover off and that’s why Arya had been unable to fix it. We were lucky he had spotted it though!

The garage had to “make” a new bracket before they could repair the van. So, after about 2 hours we were fully functioning and off on our travels.

Repaired van at our first stop over at Bletchingdon, just north of Oxford.

The third issue was a leak we discovered when we got home again. Water was dripping through the top of the window in our bathroom, through the landing ceiling and also down our central, bathroom light fitting. Every time someone switched the bathroom lights on the whole house would blow a fuse! And even now we still keep forgetting not to use the light so that all the electrics keep going off and having to be reset.

The water turned out to be coming from pipework under the floor in the attic room above. After a few frantic texts to various friends we were able to source a recommended plumber.

He was with us in half an hour and in 5 minutes had found the leak and repaired it. Two sections of waste pipe work had come adrift under the floorboards and he just had to push them back together!

Apparently the plastic pipes were sitting on top of copper heating pipes and the heat had caused the plastic sections to come adrift. Now as the sink had a dripping tap that meant that water had been constantly dripping from the pipes into the ceiling void.

Now they say things happen in threes… so that was our three!

Then as is my wont, I was listening to Woman’s Hour on Radio 4 when an interviewee was suggesting that people were likely to be experiencing travel, technical, home, health and communication difficulties at the moment as Mercury is in Retrograde.

A planet being in retrograde is how a planet appears to be changing its normal orbit even though it really is not. In Mercury’s case, the planet looks like it’s moving backwards. In reality, we just perceive it that way because of how Mercury and the Earth move relative to the sun.

Apparently this happens 4 times a year and is a real astronomical event. However, believers of astrology reckon that this event has a negative impact on our lives. As a naive teenager I used to believe in astrology and even went so far as to cast horoscopes. Now in my cynical dotage I can no longer accept that the stars and heavens affect and reflect our lives and personalities.

But there again… there were all those travel related mishaps. Then there is the world wide travel disruption caused by Covid-19….. all just a coincidence?

Sadly, I don’t for one moment think that all the ramifications from the Coronavirus will magically dissipate after March 9th when Mercury leaves its retrograde phase….but it would be marvellous if it did!

2 thoughts on “Mercury is in Retrograde…

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