What’s it going to be like after the vaccine?

Ian Parson, Plymouth to London, June ’21

Balham, South London
Somebody used lockdown to create an important message disguised as a TfL announcement. Propaganda or Commonsense?
Balham – where the message is simple

Last weekend it was more than a fortnight since I’d had both doses of the Astra Zeneca vaccine.

The deal was I risk potential blood clots in return for my life back.

I had things to do, people to see. After more than a year it was time to dip my toe tentatively back in the proverbial ocean.

It was time to go to London.

A global pandemic is an opportunity to reflect that we are all in it together and like any good relationship, we will all have to compromise
Its hard to know how anyone can seriously object to rainbow crossings. Well, unless you’re that Republican senator who thinks they belong exclusively to God.
Don’t show him Camden this month. He won’t be happy.

So I left Plymouth on the now almost complete smart motorway and headed for my holiday home in Camden Town. Where do you think people from Devon and Cornwall have their holiday homes?

That evening I jumped on the tube for the first time in more than a year.

The unexpected downturn in advertisers has given TfL the opportunity to go over the top on helpful advice and useless information. Like teenage tag artists they'll do anything to fill a space
The staff of Tfl’s London tube network are pulling out all the stops to make passengers feel safe

Immediately I noticed the low number of fellow travellers.

Between Camden and Balham there were never more than five people in my carriage and we were all extremely well spaced.

Over the course of the weekend I moved between north, south and east London and overall I have to concede the numbers without face coverings were actually fairly high. Not me of course I’m a good boy and being fully vaccinated, allegedly safe on public transport. What do I care how others behave? I just observe.

Primrose Hill, London is always going to be popular when the sun shines.
Primrose Hill in the June sunshine
The City of London growing ever bigger in the background

However the mask on the tube issue aside people were, it seemed to me, considerate and compliant at every turn.

Perhaps we’re just glad to be back out there or maybe, just maybe the extra personal space and leg room puts us all in a better mood.

Camden Town is already rising from the ruins of Covid 19. London will shrug off 2020 and rebuild as she always does
The Elephant’s Head junction, Camden Town as the sun sets over London

And I have to say restaurants are far more pleasant when those at the next table aren’t so close they might as well join in your conversation. People eavesdropping has always put me off intimate dinner chats.

After waiting over a year to be allowed back out are we really in a mad hurry to return to the close contact that was normal before covid?

The rule of six, it seems to me, is a wonderful idea. Nothing ruins a good meal like a drunken gang of office workers, and let’s be honest, do you really know more than five people you like to eat out in public with?

At the risk of sounding like a woke snowflake, wearing face masks indoors for the time being is just polite.

Have you read 1984 by George Orwell?
Try not to think about it as you take in what passes for normal in the London after Covid
Helpful advice or a glimpse of a Dystopian future?
The jury’s still out

Whilst wearing them outdoors is a show of rebellion. The highly expensive facial recognition cameras that Priti Patel and the Johnson administration have invested in so heavily are practically obsolete when somebody has mischief on their mind and has bought a mask and a hat.

Let’s be clear, I certainly don’t want to stay in a permanent state of emergency government measures, I’m not suggesting that, but I am fine with caution for now and certainly beyond the 21st, so-called ‘Fweedom Day

I swear the City of London has added more skyscrapers while nobody was looking
Let’s hope Brexit doesn’t hit the City of London too hard

I fully understand the yoof have had enough, can barely keep their hands off each other for a moment longer and I say ‘Let them go nightclubbing or whatever it is they do these days’ They’ve suffered enough.

But for the rest of us lets keep the two metre rule, stay with the masks in shops thing, and maintain the rule of six.

OH MY GOD, I’ve turned into Patty Hearst!

Ian Parson, June ’21

Modern Families are not your traditional mum, dad, 2 kids and a dog. Hopefully they are not Justin and Trudy either
Make or Break in Marrakesh
The staycation comedy with the 5 star reviews

All books by Ian Parson are available from Amazon, Waterstone’s, WH Smith and all good retailers

‘Make or Break in Marrakesh’ is the modern day rom-com intended to be read by the pool but also perfect for some staycation laughter.

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