They’ve let it loose. Set us free. “Learn to live with it” they said, after two years of careful restraint, stringent Government control. I have to chuckle darkly at the timing, the lack of planning and the seeming inability to predict the chaos which would ensue following such a situation.
“We have given you Christmas with your families” they said. “Bought more tourism into the region.” “The time of Government mandates is over” The opposite of all this has occurred. As we all knew it would, before the pork crackle gravy had a chance to go cold in the jug. Now the holiday season looms before us, and instead of excitement, yawns a great deal of anxiety and uncertainty.
Sunday, my niece, who is a nurse, and I drove past the Covid testing lines, a seemingly endless snarl of cars, feet thrust out windows, doors ajar testament to the long wait times. My skin crawled.
Daily we witness Government agencies in all their hopeless uselessness. They employ many that would otherwise be unemployable, such is the greatness of their ineptitude. A bloated workforce constricted with procedures designed to make any hint of commonsense and initiative exempt in the individual.
I have no fear of the disease, I just don’t want to become enmeshed in the chaotic tangle of hysterical control measures haphazardly being applied around it. I have, by a stroke of great fortune, been able to obtain my booster shot, now I sidestep carefully around the gigantic Governmental dog turd on the sidewalks of our annual pilgrimage to the beach, masking up, sanitising, and careful to avoid breathing too deeply.
I contemplate the people turned pariah by the shame of a positive test result. Relatives shunned because they aren’t vaccinated or because they may be infected or because they are for certain. The guilt of infecting another even when it is an innocent mistake.
“Merry Christmas” of a few days ago slides into the trash like its wrapping paper hastily discarded. Some defensive, some aggressive, many fearful and lonely. How this necrotic virus continues to corrupt our psyche despite two years, three rounds of vaccinations and more press coverage than anything in living memory.
The scent of someone’s perfume or aftershave assails me, where once I quite enjoyed the aroma. Instead, I crave empty footpath space and walk the dog early, before the sun, afterwards seeking the salty cleansing benediction of waves, still mercifully unwarmed by hundreds of other bodies.
Now I write, feeling on edge. Restless as if in limbo, waiting for a future that can go in a hundred different directions and knowing I control very little of it. I quietly list what is mine to concern myself with. It doesn’t take long. I finish with it and wait for a better mood to come along. I am an optimistic person by nature, surely it won’t take long.
Monday 29th December, 2021.