Coronavirus diary in November 2020
It is a couple of weeks since my last entry, a couple of weeks with various things happening, some to do with the virus and some not. The first was a strange period of visual disturbance. This has disappeared as mysteriously as it came but has left me waiting for an appointment in our local hospital (delayed because of coronavirus) and not able to drive until I have been seen. I am doing my best to go with the flow on this. I do not seem able to do anything which will speed things up and fretting about it not only does not help but actively makes the waiting worse! Ian is cheerily doing all the driving so it is just a matter living the intervening days rather than waiting in them. I am not too bad at that: a walk in the sun, a poached egg, a call with family or an evening with a good book, all of these things can easily be the focus of my days. We had a brief but totally delightful visit from older daughter and nearly eleven year old grandson after the lockdown eased. In Wales we are allowed to bubble with one other family and we decided to do it with them as they live so far away in South Wales that a visit within a day is just not feasible. It made me realise how very much I had missed sitting round a table, sharing food and chat,spending time over food. It has been something that has been a big part of my life, from when I was a child right up to now. I miss it.
England remains in the second period of lockdown until the 2nd December. Here in Wales we are still not able to meet in other people's houses but a limited amount of socialising in a "covid secure" setting is allowed, restricted to four people with mask wearing and social distancing. This seems strange but I find it doesn't help me to worry and question the multiplicity of rules. It can't be good for my blood pressure!
The big news which has emerged over the last few weeks is the success of three new vaccines, from Pfizer, Moderna and Oxford. To see normally cautious scientists such as Chris Whitty, the UK's Chief Medical Officer, and Professor Jonathan Van Tam expressing cautious but clear optimism about the impact of vaccines from next Spring really lifts the spirits. First however we must get through the winter!
There is much talk in the media and by politicians about what we will be able to do at Christmas. There seems to be a consensus that "people need to be able to meet up with their families at Christmas" and that the decisions still being made between the four nations of the UK are to do with how many people and for how long. I am a bit surprised at the absence of any dissenting view. Am I rare in thinking that to put at risk the progress made through lockdowns before a vaccination programme can be embedded for the sake of a couple of days at Christmas is unnecessarily reckless? Of course I would love to see some of my family at Christmas. I like Christmas and I love spending time with the children and grandchildren, but in the grand scheme of things if gatherings at Christmas increase illness and deaths from coronavirus I would say it is only one day in a strange year and not worth dying for, or even worth five days extra confinement for every one day or released restrictions.
What do you think? What are your plans?