Feel the fear and discuss it anyway

I had my COVID vaccination on Monday.  I wasn't making history, I wasn't doing my bit for Britain, and I certainly didn't feel part of something world beating.  Instead I felt cross, uneasy and anxious, not to mention jolly unwell the following night. I am wary of pharmaceuticals generally, while at the same time recognise, of course, that medical science has changed our lives unrecognisably over the last century.  Mis- and over-use of antibiotics has, as we all know, resulted in serious bug mutation and consequent ineffectiveness of existing treatments; [...]

Twelve things to love about lockdown and four to hate (maybe five):

1.The weather. It has to be connected, right? 2.  How the front at Brighton smells like the sea. I’ve never noticed that before. On the same note, I cycled past a field of sheep yesterday and I could smell the wool. Maybe fields of sheep always smell of wool and I don’t notice. Either way it’s a plus; 3.  Cycling. I’ve not been up to Devil’s Dyke before because there are so many cars. Without cars, it's a great ride; 4.  Afterwards, and how none of us know what that [...]

Sixteen things I didn’t know a month ago:

Even when everything’s closed, there is still slightly too much to do; Starting any new project – making curtains, writing a novel, learning the guitar requires will, determination, routine – not just time; I knew I was an introvert, but I hadn’t realised how much of my happiness depended on not having to go out; What furlough means. My guess is like tsunami after 2004, we'll find it popping up in every other sentence from now on; That face masks protect other people more than the wearer - using one [...]

Who Loves a Lockdown?

  When I was a kid I wanted to be a long distance lorry driver. I hadn’t thought about motorways or transport cafés, fatigue, the health impact of sitting down for ages, deadlines, queues at borders etc.  My  fantasy was about being all by myself, in a snug little cabin, all day.  I’m reminded of it now. I have been noticing how friends and clients have been responding to this voluntary lockdown.  Some seem to be glowing with it, secretly (or openly) relishing the prohibition on crowds, travel, social contact.  [...]

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