Saturday, 21 March 2020

Coronavirus chronicle continued,

I got up this morning and ran round the village, as I usually do, and popped into the co-op newspaper, again as I usually do on a Saturday.

Our co-op is quite small, basically two aisles. Fresh fruit and veg as you go in, an aisle ahead with bread and various tinned and packet groceries on one side and freezers on the other. At the end is the fridge with milk and other dairy produce, next to shelves of breakfast cereals as you turn the corner. Heading down the second aisle there are more frozen goods and then shelves of alcohol on one side and household stuff - loo roll, kitchen roll, cleaning products, etc - toothpaste and then sweets (ironically enough!) on the other, until you get to the three-till checkout and newspapers and magazines.

This morning at, what?, about 9.20? there was very little bread to speak of, still no sugar, and a significantly huge empty space where loo roll, kitchen roll and tissues should be. More significantly, the second aisle, heading down to the tills, was full of a not very well spaced put queue. I kept my distance as I waited for at least twenty minutes to shuffle down to pay for my bottle of milk and my newspaper. I felt rather sorry for the poor girl in front of me who had just one item in her basket. Oh boy!

I have not been anywhere near the larger supermarkets around here. The nearest is a small Tesco at Greenfield, which I am told had been pretty much emptied of goods earlier in the week. So I have no idea what state they are all in now.

I always run before breakfast, then come home and shower and then have a civilised latish breakfast with Phil. This morning’s was obviously delayed by my standing in the queue at the co-op for so long. Then almost as I arrived home my son rang, delaying things even further. For several years now, pretty much ever since his small daughter was old enough to enjoy doing this trip with her daddy, he has been walking down to the centre of the small town where he lives and having breakfast in a local cafe with the small girl. This gives his wife a peaceful Saturday morning lie-in and has established a nice family tradition, which I join in with when I go to visit. Coffee and croissants for the adults and a babycino (ie a small cup of frothed milk) for the small person, and usually an extra treat of a pain au chocolat if there is still a space to fill. The adults read the paper and the small girl obligingly does some colouring. This is followed by a stroll through the market, a trip to the park and playground and then a walk back up the hill to home.

Well, none of that was going on this morning with all cafes closed for the duration!

And we commented that the “duration” is really unknown. My small granddaughter, my son told me, gave them a fright last night by running a high temperature for a few hours and complaining of a sore throat. This morning, however, she seems to be as right as rain. Is this what coronavirus is like in its mildest form for a six-year-old? Or was it just a run of the mill small child fever, the kind they do from time to time. To be on the safe side, my son and family are self isolating. This means no visit to the other grandparents, just around the corner from them, especially as my fellow-mother-in-law (why do we have no word like the Spanish “consuegra”?) has undergone serious surgery not very long ago and is really not well at the moment. Another stress point for my daughter-in-law, who wants to go and help out as much as possible!

So, between one thing and another, breakfast almost became an early lunch. So much for keeping to a sensible routine during social distancing! But the day is fine, once again, and I expect we shall head out for another social distancing stroll before long!

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