17 March 2020

Musing

When I went to my local "Lidl" discount supermarket on Monday morning, there were many more shoppers in the aisles than I would normally see on a Monday morning. Two fat women had loaded their trolleys with whole boxes of canned soup, baked beans and stewing steak. Perhaps they are planning a trek to The North Pole. The dogs won't be happy.

Before I could even get inside the store, a bearded man approached me. He needed a pound coin so that he could unlock a trolley. In my head, I was thinking - I should not be helping this guy out. He is going to give me some of his loose change. He might be infected.

But I was caught off-guard and I gave him a shiny pound coin as I pocketed his coronavirus change. If it happens again I am sure that I will say "No!"

How flimsy our shell of civilisation is! Built upon the shifting sands of international finance, stocks and shares and slave to the whims of Saudi Arabian princes and the dreams of Jeff Bezos. The current chaos demonstrates how easily it could all come tumbling down. Yet still only 7893 coronavirus victims have died compared with 283,962 road traffic fatalities this calendar year and 2,352,663 deaths from hunger.

Everybody has their coronavirus stories now - about how family members and friends have been directly affected - about how future plans have been destroyed or shelved for how long? Who knows? 

I am going up to the pub quiz at "The Hammer and Pincers" tonight but it might be the very last pub quiz I ever attend. Who knows?

And all of this because a particular bat sank its fangs into a particular chicken on the other side of the planet. Thereby the bridge to pandemonium was crossed.

43 comments:

  1. Earlier today went to local co op in quest of the ever more elusive eggs. Yes, eggs. Dearth of. Yesterday there weren't any. Anywhere.

    At the checkout, assistant (new face) asks me "Cash or Card?" Cash, I say. Do you have a card, she says. No, I say, I have cash. This went back and forth three or four times. You know those strange moments when you feel you are trapped in your own nightmare scenario. Time machine. If we had both been male there would have been a stand-off.

    Apparently cash is no longer acceptable. Brill. I must have looked bewildered, wide eyed sprinkled with non-comprehension, not to say ASTONISHED (my face can be expressive when caught off guard) - so much so she relented. And took my cash. Her hands protected with latex gloves, herself now wild eyed, she started jabbering on about Corona (I don't think she meant the beer). Seriously, YP. The virus is one thing, people going mental is another. I didn't have the heart to tell her that, according to our friends the scientists, notes and particularly coins are the least likely transmitters of this virus, any virus.

    U

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    Replies
    1. I got the very last dozen eggs in Lidl on Monday morning. I will sell you two eggs for a fiver Ursula...each! Strange times.

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    3. I have a source for fresh eggs right now: the science teacher from the school where I work sells me delicious newly-laid eggs for a very reasonable price. And the hens are laying regularly now that spring is here, so supply is not a problem.

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    4. Is it possible to survive on eggs alone I wonder?

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  2. I am considering buying a shotgun to protect myself against the marauding hordes of lawless gangs that will soon be spawned by the imminent breakdown of society as we know it.
    Now remember folks, don't have nightmares 😉

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    Replies
    1. In America some people have been queuing up for guns and ammunition and I am not joking!

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    2. Now that is frightening.

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    3. Stand and deliver your toilet rolls ... no ... that's not quite the kind of deliver I was thinking of.

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    4. "Tasker! How many times have I told you to use the air freshener after you have done a Number 2!" yelled an exasperated Mrs Dunham.

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  3. We're on lockdown at my house. No work, no social events, no nothing until after the worst is over. It's an odd, frightening thing that I never imagined I would experience.

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    1. If only we could turn the clock back three months. Everything was better then. We had hope. We had small, achievable dreams.

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    2. We only had Brexit and climate change to worry about.....they seem to have gone away.

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    3. Ah, those were the days Jean - when we huddled round our fires watching the latest Brexit news. It was like a giant soap opera with Nigel Farage as Phil Mitchell. But now we are watching a horror film.

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  4. The deaths so far are just the tip of the iceberg that we will run up against if we do not implement the recommended social distancing and hygiene measures. No one has natural immunity to this. The situation in Italy is more illuminating as to what this virus looks like unchecked. And we are in it for the long haul - although human testing of treatments has just begun, an actual vaccine is still, at best, 12 to 18 months away, according to infectious diseases experts. This is one of those "before" and "after" events that draws a line across our lives, albeit a slow-moving one.

    You could always wash your coins, right? And then wash your hands!



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    1. For your reading pleasure:
      https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/world/a-chilling-scientific-paper-helped-upend-us-and-uk-coronavirus-strategies/ar-BB11kevA?li=AAggNb9&ocid=mailsignoutmd

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    2. Well that was a very cheery link Jenny! Just what I needed to lift my spirits.

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    3. I wish everyone could read it, to be honest. It might rein in some of the folks who are pooh-poohing the situation and putting others at risk. On the other hand, maybe nothing will do that. I don't think it would deter my mother, for instance.

      We really need a sarcasm punctuation mark, do we not? :)

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  5. This is not how I anticipated spending my "golden years." I have to enter Costco this week to pick up 3 months worth of contact lenses, it's giving me the willies just thinking about it.

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    Replies
    1. Perhaps you could get Costco to mail your order to you Allison.

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  6. And here's another cheery thought- this will hardly be the last pandemic to spread over the globe, perhaps even in our lifetimes. This is relatively a mild situation considering mortality rates. Not to downplay it- I'm not. But you know what I mean.

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    Replies
    1. I certainly do Lady Moon. This might just be the hors d'oeuvres.

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  7. Come, come, brave soldier. Onward...

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    1. Sounds like a line from one of Shakespeare's history plays!

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  8. You might be the only one at the quiz in the pub! Yes, I know you'd win.

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    Replies
    1. We didn't win Red. The third member of our team did not appear.

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  9. Was your pub open? All bars, restaurants and almost everything else here has been closed. I'll have to go to the grocery store in a couple of days and I don't look forward to it.

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    Replies
    1. Yes. The pub was open. Not many in and the roads were deathly quiet.

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  10. Our pub will deliver the beer to the customers, already entrepreneurship is at work.

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    Replies
    1. That would be wonderful Watching the three wise monkeys and then a pint of Tetley's appears through my window! Heavenly!

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  11. All the pubs are shut but the supermarkets are full over here YP.

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    1. I think that supermarkets will be the only businesses profiting from all of this NS.

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  12. You could always become a spiv selling hand sanitiser and seagulls in Filey?

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    1. Seagulls? I would have to catch the buggers first.

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  13. All bars have been closed here, the equivalent of a pub to you my English friend:)

    I'm still working, still walking the dogs. We don't go out much anyway so it's not much of a hardship. And now we wait. The Alberta cases rose dramatically yesterday so it has become community acquired. I just want my husband to stay safe. He's an old smoker and his lungs are shot. I don't think he would survive pneumonia.

    Stay safe you two.

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    1. A bar? I thought that was something that gymnasts swung from Lily...It is hard to imagine months of shutdown. What will it be like on the other side I wonder?

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  14. Bars, pubs, restaurants - they all have to shut at 6:00 pm over here. Now I wonder, does the corona virus know the time? Does it have tiny little clocks attached somewhere on its many little red thingies protruding from its hull? I imagine the virus thinking: "Yay, it's 6:00 pm, time to go downtown and find some fresh hosts! ... Oh no, the pub's closed, I am too late - now where to go next? Public transport maybe? And tomorrow I'll make sure to set my alarm to at least two hours earlier, so that I shall meet all those people at the pub before it closes."

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    1. Your dark humour appeals to me. Here we are advised not to visit pubs but it is okay to brave the aisles in busy supermarkets or in the case of our MP's to cluster together in parliament.

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  15. Your remark about the origin of the outbreak got me thinking. Does that mean it came from just one person who ate uncooked chicken, or who handled contaminated chicken and passed it on? Was it really that simple? If so, how frightening.
    This is interesting:
    https://www.wired.co.uk/article/china-coronavirus

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    1. Interesting article Jean. Thanks for sharing. Maybe we will never know precisely how this pandemic was first sparked but I heard it could have been from an infected chicken. With our food industry controls it is highly unlikely that such a killer virus could ever be sparked in that way in our country.

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    2. Our food standards are driven by the EU for now......

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  16. Weren't pangolins involved, too? (Through no fault of their own.)

    I admire your tenacity in going to the pub. I'm not sure I'd do that at this point.

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