Monday 28 September

Having seen a massive queue for Tesco’s yesterday, I decided to see what it was like at 8am Monday, as it opens. Fantastic. Almost no-one there, shelves fully stacked, no queue at the checkout, I can only recommend it. It seems bizarre that some supermarkets are already complaining about panic buying and shortages. Haven’t people still got a stash from March?

I had a coffee with my neighbours whose daughter lives in Germany. Clearly they compare how the two countries are coping, Germany faring so much better. The perceived wisdom appears to be that Germans love rules and regulations, adhere to them very diligently, and snitch gleefully (Schadenfreude?) on those who don’t. Whereas the Brits are more freedom-loving, with a devil-may-care attitude. The truth probably lies somewhere between the two, (I catch myself here with the British love of compromise), but in reality the Germans do have a track record of accepting a totalitarian regime rather more readily than us.

In response to the comment as to why I don’t include more political references, about Boris Johnson’s latest pronouncements, or the dilemma which university students now face: mainly because I feel there is a massive amount of comment elsewhere. I started the blog as a very personal response to the lockdown: experiences of a middle-class female of a certain age, perhaps a bit like a wartime diary kept by Mrs Bloggs, struggling with rationing and taking small children to an air raid shelter every night. The analysis of military strategy is recorded by professional historians. It’s like reading volumes of letters: what is interesting is the day-to-day issues, how they affect the ordinary citizen. I find the barrage of information, much of it conflicting, intensely irritating. I chafe at the restrictions, the rule of six being one of them, meaning that Rod and I cannot visit a family of 2 adults and 3 small children. I cannot stay with my niece in Edinburgh as two households cannot mix in Scotland, but I could meet her in a cafe. But my main aim at present is to remain upbeat. I read the headlines, I think I know what I can and cannot do, but I am not going to dwell on the frustrations.

And to end on the positive: I was able to do a real Pilates class in the church hall, and a real aquafit class in the swimming pool. Absolutely everything sanitised and distanced of course, but seeing real people with a bit of banter is what makes the world go round, in my humble opinion.

One thought on “Monday 28 September

  1. I have been reading “The Last Lion” and “London War Notes” at the same time. Both are chronological in format, so I can read the military info first and follow it with Panter-Downes’ portrayal of what was happening on the home front. I feel I get the same well rounded account by following the hard news either through TV broadcasts or newspapers and your blog. It’s a good balance.

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