Tag Archives: covid-19

Please Speak to Me (Not my Non-Disabled Companion)

As those of you who follow/read this blog will know, the primary purpose of my site is to share my poetry. I do, however sometimes blog about more personal matters and today is one of those rare occasions on which I shall do so.

 

Yesterday (Saturday 24 September) I went for my 4th Covid jab (booster). Being blind, and the vaccination centre being some distance away, a friend kindly took me in her car.

 

The centre was offering both the Covid booster and a flue jab for those entitled to receive one.

 

When it came to my turn to be vaccinated, the person giving the vaccinations asked my sighted friend  why I was entitled to receive the flu jab. I answered that I am diabetic (people with diabetes are entitled to free flu jabs in the UK), and the vaccination against Covid and Flu was given.

 

The above incident reminded me of another case where a member of station staff asked a sighted work colleague with whom I was traveling “does he need any help?”.

 

In both cases the people putting the question to my companions where assuming that I was unable to speak for myself. This is a highly patronising and erroneous assumption as I and the vast majority of other disabled people are perfectly able to answer for ourselves.

 

Both incidents are ironic as had I been unaccompanied the individuals putting the questions would have had no alternative other than to address me directly, which is, of course as it should be.

 

Having visited both China and Sri Lanka, I am aware that those nations (and many other countries) do not have the facilities for people with disabilities which are available in the United Kingdom. However, this fact in no way excuses the patronising attitudes adopted by a minority of individuals. This is particularly the case in the NHS where all staff should be provided with disability awareness training.

 

The vast majority of those employed in the NHS do an excellent job (often under extremely difficult circumstances). However, the minority who adopt patronising attitudes needs to be addressed.

 

Disabled people are human beings and deserve to be treated with the same respect as are non-disabled fellow citizens.

 

There Once Was a Very Wise Old Rooster

There once was a very wise old rooster
Who decided to go for his Covid booster.
, But when he got there
A young nurse named Claire
Said, “this booster is not meant for you rooster!”

(I went for my Covid booster yesterday and, strange to say, not a rooster was in sight.

To be serious for a moment, if you are eligible for a booster, and have not yet had it, I would urge you to do so. The vaccine is helping to keep us all safe. Yes it doesn’t offer absolute protection, but we are now in a much better position than we where prior to the introduction of Covid vaccines).

Reading During Lockdown

An interesting post on The Reader, concerning a project in which people discuss books over the telephone. The project was launched as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The following link tells the story of Carrina, a retired GP living in London, and her reading relationship with a gentleman living in the north of England. To read Carrina’s story please follow this link, https://www.thereader.org.uk/carrinas-story-its-different-personal-and-wonderful-all-at-the-same-time/

Vaccinated

On 19 February, I received my first shot of the Fizer Corona vaccine, https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/regulatory-approval-of-pfizer-biontech-vaccine-for-covid-19/information-for-uk-recipients-on-pfizerbiontech-covid-19-vaccine#side-effects.

I am pleased to report that thus far I have experienced no side effects and I would strongly encourage anyone who remains unsure about being vaccinated, to take the plunge, do I mean jab! When offered the opportunity.

I look forward to sipping pints in a pub garden once more with friends, hopefully in the near future!

My only complaint is that no one offered me a piece of cake or a nice cup of tea following my vaccination. I shall be writing a strongly worded letter of complaint to Matthew Hancock, the Secretary of State for Health about that! I feel sure that, having received my letter, he will immediately order all vaccination centres to stock up with assorted cakes and a good variety of teas to cater for all tastes!

Alice in Wonderland Would be at Home Here

From tomorrow (Saturday 17th October), it becomes illegal for separate households to mix indoors (unless the household concerned is part of a bubble, in which case it is allowed). Households may also mix in Covid secure workplaces, although the government advises that those who can do so should work from home.

As someone who lives in the Greater London area, the above rules will impact me from Saturday 17th October.

I find the restrictions nonsensical. I can, from tomorrow still go into a pub or restaurant and be in the presence of other households (provided I remain 2 metres apart and wear a mask when not seated). However I can not meet friends in a pub or restaurant even if we are “social distancing”.

Yesterday evening I popped into my favourite local pub. It was relatively quiet and I chatted to a couple of customers (socially distanced from me) over a few pints. From Saturday 17th October I will still be able to talk to people in a pub and/or restaurant provided we remain socially distanced, and provided also that they are not my friends!

Again, I can not have friends or family round to my home, but my cleaner may, perfectly legally continue to clean my home provided that we observe Covid secure guidelines.

Now, my cleaner wears a mask and gloves whilst in my home and (when I last checked) my family and friends did not)! However, the fact remains that a cleaner or other tradesperson may continue to visit domestic premises, for the purposes of work, whilst family and friends may not do so (unless the household is part of a bubble).

I am sure that Alice (of Alice in Wonderland and Alice Through the Looking Glass fame) would be at home in this crazy world we are currently inhabiting!

As I’ve said previously, whilst I accept that Covid-19 is a serious issue, I am not a supporter of bans on household mixing. I think that any true liberal should feel very queasy when police are empowered to fine and/or arrest households for socially mixing.

For anyone interested in reading about the Covid restrictions, please see https://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/1346946/can-workmen-come-to-the-house-cleaners-household-mixing-new-rules-tier-1-2-3-EVG.

COVID-19

A week or so back, I was in a pub when a group began singing along, very loudly to music. Being aware of research which indicates that COVID-19 can be spread by singing, https://medicalxpress.com/news/2020-09-unmasked-indoors-covid-aerosols.html , I became concerned and deliberately shifted my position so that my face was away from the singers.

My feelings regarding the above incident remain ambivalent. On the one hand, I believe that the singers behaved irresponsibly (there actions could have spread Corona), However, on the other hand we all need some joy in our lives and the measures introduced during the present pandemic do not spread happiness! In addition, I was sitting approximately 2 metres away from the singers, which put me at minimum risk. Also, I had entered the pub of my own volition and (despite my worries about the spread of the virus), I was pleased to see people enjoying themselves.

Had the police entered the premises, they would, I suspect have asked the singers to desist or, if they had refused to do so, issued a fine.

A society in which people can be fined for singing in pubs is not one which recommends itself to me, and I’m not in the business of reporting individuals who choose to exercise their lungs by singing.

I find it shocking that in some parts of the UK (much of the north-west of England for example) that it is against the law for different households to mix together. I’m equally disturbed that some politicians are actively encouraging members of the public to report on those breeching the rules on households mixing, (see https://news.sky.com/story/coronavirus-report-your-neighbours-to-police-if-they-break-rule-of-six-says-minister-12071678). Until very recently ratting on one’s neighbours in this manner would have been considered as something done in the Third Reich or the former German Democratic Republic (Communist East Germany), and wholeheartedly condemned by lovers of traditional English liberty.

I recommend this article for anyone who doubts the absurdity of the current muddle which constitutes COVID-19 regulations, https://capx.co/in-the-age-of-covid-the-law-is-a-thug/.

People talk of “the science”. Whilst COVID-19 is a real problem and those who deny it’s existence (conspiracy theorists) are barking mad, there is no scientific consensus on how to deal with the pandemic. See, for example this article about scientists opposed to lockdown (with which I have some sympathy), https://news.sky.com/story/scientists-and-politicians-split-over-how-to-tackle-rising-covid-infections-as-northern-leaders-say-restrictions-are-not-working-12096597.

A Young Lady Wearing A Corona Virus Mask

A young lady wearing a Corona virus mask
Said, “some people they take me to task
For shopping whilst nude,
Which prudes think rude.
But at least I am wearing a mask!”.

Literature Today is inviting submissions on the theme of pandemic

Literature Today is inviting submissions on the theme of pandemic. For further details please see below:

Dear Author,
We are inviting submissions for September 2020 issue of ‘Literature Today’. The theme of our September 2020 issue is ‘Pandemic’. You can send us poems, short stories, memoirs and one act plays. The issue will be published in hard copy (Paperback) and digital copy .

For detailed submission guidelines and link of previous issues please visit: https://literaturetodayjournal.blogspot.com/

Perchance I Shall Thumb My Nose

Will government do the hokey cokey and close
The pubs (which only reopened on 4 July)?
Scientists cry,
“We maintain, that the pubs must close again!”.
And the electorate thumb their nose
At politicians,
As the country goes
To pedition.

And I think
Of a dry
Autumn to come.
So will enjoy a drink
In the hot summer sun.
And rhyme
‘Ere time
Is called, and the pubs are closed.

And, perchance
I shall thumb my nose
At those
Who would destroy
The dance
Of joy.

1 Meter Plus?

He sought bliss
In a kiss.
But, “Corona”, she cried.
“Your kiss is denied!”.

“What about a hug”,
He said.
“That is also denied”,
She replied,
“for a bug
May hide inside
A hug”.

“So is love dead?”,
He said.
“Perchance we may dance
1 meter apart.
But, to be safe
We must not embrace.

You have my heart”,
Said she.
“But, let us discuss,
Perhaps, for you and me
It really ought to be
1 meter plus?”.