Coronavirus at Christmas

A press conference on Saturday afternoon, the 19th December.  Boris Johnson and his scientific advisers announce that the spread of a new strain of the virus is causing great concern.  This strain appears to be considerably more infectious so while the illness itself seems to be no more (or less) virulent, if it runs unchecked we shall have a huge increase in case numbers with the inevitable impact on hospitalisations and fatalities.  So fiercer restrictions are put in place in much of England and significant changes made to the arrangements for Christmas, reducing the period in which restrictions are relaxed from five days to one.  Here in Wales there is the immediate announcement of another lockdown, again with some very slight easing on Christmas Day, but otherwise a lockdown to mirror the severity of the one we had here in spring: no travel, exercise from home, no household mixing.

It was not unexpected.  Cases had been suddenly rising in the South East and in South Wales and the news about the new strain  perhaps explains that.  There had also been much uneasiness about the relaxations for Christmas anyway but the news of a much more infectious variant of the disease made changes to the rules almost inevitable.  We had been hoping to see our older daughter and her family, with whom we have bubbled recently, for a couple of days of fairly restrained celebrations, taking advantage of our holiday cottage which means that we would not have needed to share a house overnight.  I think we had all begun to wonder if this was wise and the new announcements have simply made the decision for us.  We were cheerful and resigned with each other on our facetime call as Emma and I agreed that we could have Christmas at Easter, hopefully vaccinated and protected, but as I looked into her face and she into mine I could see that we were both sad.  Would our eleven year old grandson mind, I asked her.  I knew he had been looking forward to it.  He will be disappointed, she acknowledged, but he has been worrying about the virus and the possible vulnerability of both us and his other grandmother, so he will like to feel he is keeping us safe.  


Yesterday I went walking by myself, down the hill, up the station path and into Caerwys by the churchyard.  I wasn't going anywhere or doing anything in particular, just walking, looking, feeling my breath shorten and my legs working as I climbed the hill.


One day at a time.  There is much to do here as we move closer to moving out of our house but I can't get excited about it today.  Tomorrow I will.  Today I will read and crochet and be glad to be here.  Bring on the vaccine.  



Comments

  1. I wouldn't be surprised if the entire country (England) is put in lockdown before too long. The situation is dire, even with the vaccine on the horizon, and the NHS is struggling already.

    It's been made so much harder for people to accept the latest restrictions after being promised the relaxing of rules over Christmas to allow families to be together, only to have that snatched away from them at relatively short notice. The health experts and scientists were against allowing families to mingle over Christmas from the beginning so it seems particularly cruel that the government chose to ignore them, only to backtrack in the way they have done. I know it's necessary, but .... it's hard!

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    1. Yes agree on all counts, necessary but hard and perhaps we could have avoided the whole idea of being able to see people at Christmas. I understand that the government wanted to be able to allow people to mix, but it always seemed a dodgy idea!

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  2. Will your shepherd's hut stay up on the hill, or will it go into your new garden?

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    1. The shepherd's hut has already gone down to our daughter's house in South Wales. That was quite some saga!

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  3. That walk looks delightful - love that path. So sorry to hear about all the extra restrictions over there.

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    1. Once again Susan, where you are is the place to be! Yes it's a lovely old path like so many round here.

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  4. We moved in June to be closer to family, but increasing restrictions here in Canada mean that we too will have a tiny Christmas this year. I hope your move goes smoothly and that your new home will be as lovely as your current one. We left a garden that we loved, knowing that though we will garden again here, it will not be the same - different zone, different terrain, therefore different plants. It was already a lot of adjusting (for someone who resists change!) and the covid thing adds a layer of second guessing our decision. I am usually much more cheerful this time of year. On the brighter side, I finally made my first ever Christmas stollen. Merry Christmas to you, and wishing a healthy 2021 to all.

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    1. What a lot of change for you this year, and for us too. I generally enjoy change but covid had a strange effect : a feeling of being in limbo I suppose. I'm impressed with the Christmas stollen!

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  5. We in the USA are no doubt just a few days or weeks behind the UK in terms of a new tighter lock down. We are hoping against hope to squeeze in a simplified smaller Christmas gathering before the rules are tightened; we feel like we've been good rule followers since March, and really need a one day break before being thrown into the winter hibernation. Blessings on your Christmas!

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    1. It's tricky isn't it? We too feel we have been being careful and compliant for a long time. But the situation here seems to call for more, so here we are, doing it as best we can. Happy Christmas. We shall have a quiet one together. We probably won't need the turkey!

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  6. Same goes for us Elizabeth- we reckon we will spend Christmas on our own for the first time in 48 years of marriage! There has to be a first time for everything I suppose.
    Stay safe and well and here's to a happier 2021!

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  7. We have spent a strange Christmas and totally different with restrictions and uncomfortable measures. We are enjoying them too being connected with different devices and apps. At least connected and united.
    Stay safe all and Merry Christmas and New Year 2021!!

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