IMG_8075Let’s face it, 2020 has been a shit year, so far! And, here we are almost at the end of August and still shrouded in a veil of uncertainty, despite efforts to get back to a degree of normality.  But, what is normal these days in a world without a vaccine for the killer that is COVID-19? I have lived through bizarre and tragic events in my life, but 2020 has been both surreal ns terrifying

Children are going back to school, with or without masks. Office workers are returning to their open-plan desks, having worked from home for months. University students are ‘going back’ to a, mainly, virtual world. What will happen to our state of the art university buildings on campuses that once were vibrant hubbubs of young people with the world at their feet?

Like everyone else on the planet, I started 2020 bouncing off the walls with enthusiasm.  For once, I had even set myself completion dates for all my writing projects.  Then Lockdown came around, and my fervor and determination to finish all projects in double-quick time popped like a balloon.

As the NHS and other essential workers rallied, lining themselves up against COVID-19, the rest of us were encased in our little home bubbles, dazed, but safe – provided we stayed put. Why is it I still find it hard to eradicate the irresponsible Dominic Cummings saga from my mind? 😤

As the NHS and other essential workers rallied, lining themselves up against COVID-19, the rest of us were encased in our little home bubbles, dazed, but safe – provided we stayed put.

The first time I encountered the postman during the early days of Lockdown when nobody was wearing a mask, he was delivering a parcel. I was in the driveway, and, under normal circumstances, I would exchange pleasantries and take the package from him. Instead, I backed away, mumbling something about suffering from autoimmune disease, and being a bit vulnerable

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Author Selfie

He assured me he wouldn’t come any closer and that he would leave the package on the ground, and slowly backed away. I feel a bit of a numpty now, and, in hindsight, he probably thought I was as nuts as Miss Haversham. Now would be a good time to point out I live in the small island of Jersey, but I wasn’t taking any chances then. And I’m not taking any chances now, even if I seem to be the only person in the supermarket wearing a mask… at the moment.

As Lockdown progressed, I started writing about the grim reality of Life Under the Cloud of COVID-19.  Fortunately, by week 8 of Lockdown, I managed to kickstart my pre-COVID-19 exuberance as I started getting my va va voom back.

The one good thing that came out of Lockdown for me, and the only thing I can thank Lockdown for, was making me realise what things were important to me.  I looked around my home and saw there was too much of everything, especially clutter.

I’ve been an avid ‘collector’ of stuff for years.  Drawers worth.  Theatre tickets and programmes.  Newspaper cuttings and letters from old flames who no longer spark my life.  Spikey epistles from my mother from thirty-odd years ago.  Damning tirades, disapproving of my life choices.  Why did I hang on to all those things for so long? It was time for a clear out, which proved therapeutic.

Most importantly, Lockdown made me think about where I want I want to be and with whom I want to spend the rest of my life.  None of us knows how much longer we’ve got. You never know what is around the corner, particularly in an uncertain COVID-19 world.

Since finishing this piece, Jersey’s Chief Minister has just announced that we are half-way through our fight against COVID-19.  I rest my case.

Global Race to find a vaccine