Keeping Busy

The art of keeping busy has taken on a totally new dimension. Pastimes, hobbies and essential tasks have all merged to occupy free time before the sundowners can finally take over.

The keep calm and carry on slogan that originated during the war, then re-emerged a few years is getting yet another airing. Its appearance on just about every conceivable printed matter was driving us slightly crackers; its meaning becoming hackneyed beyond belief. Now at least it needs a a rewrite to say perhaps ‘Keep calm and keep your distance’.

With days, weeks and months all merging to become just another day, the art of social distancing is not just for the outside world, it has taken on a further dimension at home. Keeping out of each others way in any household is problematic.

Around the house, bungalow and flat there is a need to keep a safe physchological distance from the rest of the family. What that distance is depends on circumstances, the relationships with fellow occupants and safety. If you’re a senior medical official or adviser to the government in England, Scotland or New Zealand these rules don’t apply you are free to go picnicking, visit a second home or roger someone’s else’s wife in your own home at your leisure. The rest of us mere mortals have rules to acknowledge.

We are bound for a sharp learning curve as things reopen. The commute being the most difficult. Already public transport presents a dilemma worthy of  Schrödinger’s Cat. How do you get 56 passengers that have queued at two meters spacing into a bus whilst still maintaining your social distancing.

The final test of resolve is to reflect that at some point in the future this will all pass. This requires us to ignore the constant haranguing by the press who pick out all the negatives they can possibility conceive. The latest by the press being the apparently ‘shock announcement’ that the shut down has devastated the UK economy. I think we all realised this when all shops offices and businesses are closed, income has stopped and payments, loans and furloughing has gone through the roof. The “shock’ announcement we want is development of a vaccine, a comprehensive return to work and school, or the oversupply of loo rolls.

Alistair Owens

The meandering thoughts of someone with too much time on his hands. Tending to see the obscure and irrelevant in most events I have been forced to record this by family members as a means of diverting attention away from them. But I see their plan.

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