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Pandemic: The story so far #life

My picture today is a montage that I created during my self-isolation last year. I spent months last year, being creative, taking photos and wandering around my garden. I didn’t even go out for exercise. The government said that the over 70s were vulnerable and should self isolate. Then came a story in a Sunday newspaper about it and the government changed its tune. Then they said it was only the “extremely vulnerable” that needed to “shield”. The elderly were then expected to do their shopping first thing in the morning! Previous governments appear to have done no pandemic planning.

pandemic

Food supplies

Food supplies were my first worry but I had enough food to last a few weeks. I joined the local support group and donated £50 to help get them started. Then I contacted neighbours, one helped and another offered support. In the end, I bought a “delivery pass” from Asda and managed to get a slot late one evening using my phone whilst lying in bed. Then I got a regular slot every two weeks. The deliveries have worked well. This week, they gave me the wrong slot but I was able to change it. I think Asda and Morrisons responded to the national emergency far better than the government.

Lockdown

The national lockdown was obviously necessary but it came too late. It ended too soon and the “eat out, to help out” initiative was a stupid idea. That was mixed in with the chaos of Boris’s Brexit spurred on by the European research group pushing from the sidelines. That group was later to develop into another toxic parliamentary group pushing against lockdowns. I suspect that toxic personality Duncan Smith was behind all the pressure on the government to make bad decisions. In that mix as well, was Dominic Cummings. He is a champion of deregulation and wants to sweep away bureaucracy but his radical ideas came at the wrong time. He also broke the lockdown restrictions and came up with pathetic excuses for doing so. Doesn’t he have a regular optician that he can go to? He went quickly from senior government advisor to national laughing stock

Vaccination

The things the government got right were funding for the pandemic and the vaccination rollout. It did pull out all the stops to find the funds needed. The provision of PPE initially was a bit of a disaster but that was mainly because they didn’t pay attention and accept what was happening in China. They have cut the international aid budget which shows they are still inward-looking and still not paying attention. Would things have been better under Comrade Corbyn? Obviously not. He wanted to print tons of money to finance his nationalisation fantasy. I’m not convinced that Keir Starmer could do any better either, but he, along with the press, are holding the government to account; which is their job. The vaccination programme with other measures can get us out of trouble but we have to keep our borders closed and the talk of holidays abroad is far too premature. The Commonwealth Games could be an unnecessary risk too.

2022

2022 could be a year of celebration. We have all been a bit anti-social over the last year, relying on meeting on Zoom and social media. Perhaps we could have a summer festival of the arts with opportunities to get out and meet each other. A year of carnivals, summer fetes and festivals? It must be worth thinking about. Let’s put the pandemic behind us.

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