It is now 34 days until Christmas; and 252 days since I first switched to working from home because of the pandemic.
Back in Spring, the government boldly promised everything would be back to normal in 12 weeks. A few people cynically referred to the WW1 claim that the conflict would be ‘over by Christmas’, saying this would drag on longer than expected. We’re now within 5 weeks of Christmas with the country on lockdown, and some very difficult decisions have to be made. Basically: how many people will the government allow to die so that Christmas can go ahead?
One of the reasons given for the current restrictions was so that families could meet on December 25th. There have already been triumphant headlines about “Boris” saving Christmas. But lifting restrictions in a pandemic and therefore encouraging people to mix around the country seems insane. Eid and Diwali have both been disrupted already; having an even larger festival go ahead is ridiculous. At the very least, a few days of looser restrictions will a longer period locked down afterwards.
All this adds to the gloomy apocalyptic mood. The government seems to have no strategy, and is instead distracted by internal squabbles and scandals. There is the promise of the vaccine, with the first roll-out just weeks away. But delivering supplies of this present another challenge, as does clearing up the economic damage (with Brexit on top of that). I’m not feeling optimistic.
My life in Lockdown 2 is, as for most people living alone, boring and a little lonely. Lots of people around me are ignoring the restrictions, and I can’t even bring myself to be annoyed or angry at this. The national response to this whole pandemic has been a disaster, and I don’t blame people for trying to get on with things. Me, I spend my days building software, and in the dark evenings I write, watch a little TV, but find it muster enough energy to do anything.
I’ve been planning Christmas on the assumption that the rule-of-six will be in place, and have invited a few local friends to join me for food. I’d hoped to visit family on the 26th or 27th, but they are (understandably) not enthusiastic about having Christmas outdoors or in the garage. Personally, I’d rather the Christmas Bank Holidays were rolled over to the summer, and just have them as normal working days. The holiday season feels spectacularly un-festive this year.If you want to follow what I'm up to, sign up to my mailing list