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March 2021

Turn up at a British railway station, or a supermarket, or a post office and you will see an orderly queue. It all dates back to the days of rationing in the long years during and after the world wars of the last century. In

The British have always been passionate about their dogs and this love affair seems to have reached a new pitch in lockdown. With so many restrictions in place, walking has become a default pastime and canine companions are proliferating at an astonishing rate. Pampered pooches, who

Limited social contact has taken its toll on formal dining, and hosting and attending dinner parties seems like a distant memory when lockdown rules restrict social gatherings. However now that there is light at the end of the tunnel, there is no excuse for letting dining

As Valentine’s Day approaches, our thoughts turn to romance in the time of the Covid. In a world that has turned ever more virtual, online dating seems an increasingly good idea and dating apps and websites are booming. Lockdown has brought some unforeseen changes and

Valentine’s Day is fast approaching and a frenzy of flower-giving is about to begin. Flowers can be a perfect romantic gift, but we are no longer particularly conversant with the language of flowers, or floriography, which became a passion in Victorian England. In a society

Our current circumstances are certainly challenging and it is very hard, and possibly somewhat irritating, to project a relentlessly positive and optimistic persona. It is much more natural to enjoy a good moan, but proceed with caution. Moaning is inevitably a reaction to ephemeral difficulties, daily

The prime function of this time-honoured celebration of gastronomy and poetry is to pay tribute to the Scottish national poet, Robbie Burns (1759–96). It was first held on 25 January 1801, on Robbie Burns’s birthday. A lockdown Burns Night, conducted on Zoom or similar, certainly presents