A friend of mine has given me a new word. Hamsterkäufe - word of the week - buying or stocking up in excess like a hamster hoarding food. You have to love it!
I am always amazed at the way people rush out to stock up on food or household items when there us a crisis of some kind. Maybe it’s the natural human desire to feel that you are in control of the situation. There is a desperate need to DO SOMETHING! Buying stuff is something we can all do. Consequently people go out and stock up.
And yes, I have succumbed to this instinct in the past. This is why we have a drawer full of candles. Back when we used to have winters, proper winters with deep snow as opposed to the wet and miserable winters we have now, it was not uncommon to have power cuts. And so we have a drawer full of unused candles.
Buying soap and handwash and antiseptic gel in the current crisis I can understand. Well, to some extent, although my gut feeling is that if you have your normal stock of such things, and if you are already in the habit of washing your hands quite frequently, then there is really no need to go out and buy ALL the stocks on the shelves. (It’s rather like The Tiger Who Came to Tea eating and drinking everything, including all the water in the taps!) One wonders if the soap buyers have on,y just discovered hygiene! However, I cannot understand why there has been a rush on loo-roll. One of life’s mysteries!
And so now Italy is closed! A friend of mine was due to go for a city break to Rome to celebrate her husband’s birthday. They got to the airport to find the flight was cancelled. Southport doesn’t have quite the same cachet as Rome. It certainly doesn’t have the coliseum! There might once conceivably have been a cinema or dance hall of that name, although I do not remember one from my youth there!
Looking at colour-coded maps showing numbers of sufferers of the virus, I note that France is the same colour as Italy. But France is not closed ... yet!
Is this how freedom of movement ends?
Meanwhile, here we are, back in the UK. Life goes on. The rain goes on. The river is swollen and the nearby business park has a large puddle which suggests imminent flooding possibilities. Fortunately we are far enough up the road, and more importantly higher up the hill, for this not to be a major threat to us.
We shall see.