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?





Comments

  1. I'm frustrated by the suggestions that restrictions may be relaxed to allow families to celebrate Christmas. It's only one day and surely people can use their imaginations and adapt, rather than taking the risk of mixing with others and the virus gaining the upper hand as a result.

    I was booked to go away over Christmas but, as it involved live music, singing and dancing I wasn't surprised when it was cancelled. I'm planning my own celebrations at home on my own and am content with my choices. My family is focused on making sure the young children have a brilliant time in their small family groups but there'll be no big meet ups this year, regardless of how the restrictions are relaxed.

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    1. So I'm not alone in thinking we might not be doing the right thing! We know more now about how it is supposed to work. It still seems to me that allowing the families to meet and relaxing the rules over a period of five days is too much risk to balance the reward. Why not fewer days or smaller numbers of people or both? And yet I will see my family and long for it. We will put a lot of thought into minimising the risks. We are outdoor sort of people. I wonder how much time, in the dead of winter, we can spend outside?

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  2. We are so lucky here as, apart from using the contact tracing app life goes on much as normal. I do agree with you though about Christmas. Far better to keep isolating rather than risk further cases.

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    1. New Zealand is one of a tiny number of countries to have managed numbers right down. Being an island nation must help (although isn't Britain one of those?) and a small population must make it easier. But with all that, good management must have played a part!

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  3. We are staying here. On our own. Technically we'd be within the new rules if we stayed with my BIL, and wife, student nephew and junior doctor niece, or they came here but we've decided it's far too risky, especially as they're in Yorkshire with a much higher incidence of the the virus.

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    1. It's tricky to work out what feels like acceptable risk isn't it, and presumably it varies from person to person according to a whole range of considerations. And it is only a couple of days! Next year, I hope, the vaccine will bring us all more choices!

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    2. It is a tricky one isn't it. We are seeing our older daughter and her family but both they are us are going to isolate from this weekend to reduce our risk!

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  4. Watching our numbers warily, rising again. Will probably stay, just the 2 of us, for Christmas. But sad to miss the chance to catch up face to face. We missed Easter too. Next year ...

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    1. Ah yes, next year. And next year wouldn't it be wonderful to travel again!

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  5. Our plans are not to travel. It will be small, but it will be wonderful. We will wait patiently because I think that things ARE going to turn around. All we need to do is follow the rules for this last stretch.

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  6. New measures and variable daily restrictions will actually make different Christmas. We will stay quietly at home and in contact with our family and friends. It´s time to adapt what it is. Better times will come!!

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    Replies
    1. Yes indeed, Luz. Hoping that next Christmas will be different!

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