Common cold

I’ve been looking over the blogs from last year again. It’s so strange to feel the change. Last year I was aware of the possibility of a lockdown, but just as a theory. A little firebreak that might be deemed necessary. I was worrying what it might do to businesses if things had to slow down for a week or two.

I was driving a selection of vehicles to Heathrow every day and waiting, breathing in and out as people came flooding from international arrivals past me and my sign. I was carrying different passengers from different countries and they were all eating tubs of Marks and Spencer flapjacks and sharing Percy Pigs out of the packet fresh off the airplane as I took them to their hotel or went location scouting. “Oh God I’m so sick,” said one woman. Her job was to run a venue where people made a load of cakes with different flags on. “I’ve got some kind of flu. My temperature is everywhere. Put the windows up, I’m cold. It can’t be this Corona, I’ve only been in Italy. Stop putting the windows down, are you trying to make me more sick?” Thankfully the cakes were just for show. Whatever it was she had she gave it to me. But those were the days where we would be unwell in each others company.

It’s the flu season, and whether or not this is a horrible year, at least we aren’t all streaming with something. Lemsip sales must be right down now that we aren’t casually infecting each other with all the little illnesses. Most of us get some sort of bug that stirs in the warmth in early spring. People would get on the tube with eyes streaming and pockets full of tissues, rocking their sleepy way full of head and paracetamol to a job they felt they couldn’t afford to miss. If you moved away when they started hacking with feverish cough next to you they’d look at you like you were being intolerant, and carry on louder. Now they’d be wrapped in clingfilm by cops in hazmat suits and clinically burnt. The world shifts.

I saw an army of masked coppers in the entrance to Mornington Crescent tube last night trying to move on one maskless homeless guy. He was cold and seemed pretty reasonable but didn’t want to move. It was a weird slow pantomime of proximity and distance. I didn’t stay to watch.

This year, if we get an eye infection it’s definitely Corona. If our leg starts twitching it’s Covid 19, no doubt about it. It’s like we’ve forgotten all about the existence of The Common Cold. There’ll be people showing up at A&E with a mild cold, weeping, begging for a spot on a ventilator.

I’m still feeling pretty good thankfully. I did another self tape this evening, perhaps a little rushed and I discovered why we don’t use ring lights when I saw the footage on a bigger screen. Fucking thing stole my pupils. I can’t imagine this one will go my way, but it was fun doing it. I’m getting to the stage where I like the paraphernalia of taping at home, God help me. The technology afterwards I can leave behind. But the acting bit is fun…

I gotta get something soon. Going crazy here. More driving this week though. That’s something I guess…

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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