Lockdown: Day 36

Walking through the streets this morning it was easy to think that the world has returned to normal. Cars queued at junctions where last week there were none, and there were people all over the place. Then I looked closer – most of the people were wearing orange vests and they weren’t standing in huddles, instead the required two metres apart, shouting morning greetings and hitting the air with their high fives rather than their mates’ hands.

Since we entered level three the pavements have taken on new decorations. Some have clearly been created for a specific (takeaway) outlet, logo’d and brazen. Black and yellow hazard tape seems common, sometimes plain blue or red. One place clearly wasn’t trying, or hadn’t planned ahead, and simply used standard brown packing tape.

Social distancing rules clearly don’t apply to shopping trolleys. Well, they barely follow the rules of forward propulsion, do they, swinging all over the place as though they have (wandering) minds of their own. The one I used this morning was a credit to its species, unable to keep a straight line, veering into oncoming shoppers. One woman screeched to an emergency stop with a look of blind panic on her face. As I wrestled it away from her I swear I heard a whispered Good on yer mate! from the trolley she was pushing.

At home I carefully wiped down all my purchases with sanitising spray. I hesitated before spraying the fruit and veg – this stuff is 70% alcohol and I’m worried it may leave a residue and lead to addiction problems down the line. As if we need help with that! Worse still, we might be indirectly ingesting bleach when we eat it. And what sort of irony is it that I carefully wipe a bottle of bleach?

After lunch I whipped out the flour and baking trays and knocked up a batch of muffins. According to Nigella, producing something baked, in the process filling your home with lovely smells, is all you need to do to be a domestic goddess. Nailed it then.

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