The beginning of November and normally for those of us working in education at this time of year we are getting ready to return to school for what is always a busy term on the run-up to Christmas.
This term is usually full of fundraisers, Christmas parties, Christmas concerts (preceded by at least a couple of weeks of rehearsals), Christmas crafts and lots of over excited children.
But as we approach the start of the second lockdown for England it leaves us wondering just what the weeks preceding Christmas are actually going to look like.
We had already resigned ourselves to finding alternative ways of fundraising to our usual Christmas fair and chance for children to see Santa; to re-assessing the best way to hold a party to ensure no 'bubbles' were being compromised; to acknowledging there would be no concerts this year and now we have a lockdown to contend with.
We have been told it will run from 5th November (the irony of it starting on Bonfire Night...gunpowder, treason and plot and all that) and will end on 2nd December...maybe...possibly...but it may need to go on longer!! Who knows? Argh!
Molly has decided to spend this next lockdown with her fella, a lot of miles away from home, and while I know she will be absolutely fine this will be the longest she has ever been away from home and for a mum, especially of a certain age, it has left me feeling overwhelmingly emotional this afternoon. They already have a long distance relationship and cope with that amazingly well seeing each other every few weeks. The first lockdown was a long haul and I really felt for them having to be apart for so long; in fact I felt for anyone in a relationship where they were not living together, it was a tough old time. Some would argue it was equally as tough for those living together as well! And yet here we find ourselves, yet again, heading into another lockdown.
I understand the reasoning behind the decision but do have to question why, if it's the right thing to do, has it taken them so long to come around to it. Advisory groups were telling the government back in late September to take a short lockdown but it has taken just over a month for them to implement it. And now rather than a lockdown being for a couple of weeks it will be at least four weeks, possibly longer and with Christmas looming everyone will be hoping that we can have some sort of normality for then. But to be honest the longer this goes on, and the more inept the handling of it, I can't see Christmas being anything like what we would normally expect.
And as this 'thing' drags on and more and more information starts to work its way through there is the nagging question of whether we are doing the right thing? Will a lockdown have any affect? Did the last lockdown have any actual affect? If the virus is seasonal did the lockdown occur at the time at which the virus would naturally wane as the weather warmed up? What about the usually flu figures,are they at the rate we would expect to see or is the new virus simply replacing the expected number of flu cases? Is the testing system working effectively? And don't lets get started about the tracking system that was supposed to be 'world beating' but is very evidently not!
But as a mere member of the public I don't have the answer to those questions, nor would I know where to go to get the answers let alone know who to trust to give me the right answers. I look forward to the documentary that will undoubtedly get made that will reveal what actually happened with SARS-Cov-2 and I just hope to goodness that what we have been put through these last 8 months will have been worth it, but I fear that the truth may well be a different story.
Let's finish this post with some normality. Despite Molly 'leaving home', today was a day of tidying around as the house had been decorated with various Halloween bit and pieces over the last week or so and it was now time to put everything away. I now have a few weeks to get ready for Christmas decorations!
We decided, despite the wind and the rain, to have a walk out mid-afternoon and managed a pretty decent 3.2 miles in exactly one hour. Once home it was time for coffee, chocolate and an attempt to watch as much as I could of Disney's Haunted Mansion movie. But why you may ask? Well part of this evening's Disney Dream Girls Sunday Disney Quiz was about said movie and while I have watched the movie before (I even own it on DVD) it was a lot of years ago and so my memory needing refreshing. It is not the best movie in the world and I managed to get about 50 minutes of it watched before the quiz started which, thankfully for me, was just enough. Michelle was setting the questions and she had watched the movie yesterday in order to come up with the questions but admitted to being so bored with it that she gave up about 50 minutes in!!
The quiz has become a little family of like minded Disney nerds that meet up in Zoom once a week to say hello, swap stories and share a little Disney. It has become a sense of normality in what can feel like a very strange world at times. I love my Disney family.
Let's take care out there, wash your hands, keep your distance, wear a mask and hope we get through it all safely.