Expensive test

A spin through London. I paid £99 to have somebody in a smock shove something up my nose so I can get a piece of paper by midnight telling me I officially don’t have Covid. I had to do one at home this morning as well because I’ve just arrived back in June country. Now I’m waiting up despite the fact I have to leave the flat early tomorrow morning. It’s the last piece of admin I need to be able to relax into the odd reality of going somewhere completely unfamiliar for a few weeks.

I’m planning on driving to Heathrow tomorrow early and putting my car into a long stay car park for three weeks. It’s another ton to do it but then I can get to Heathrow in half an hour and I don’t have to worry about getting impounded if they change the bloody parking restrictions outside my flat again. They do it all the time and you only get 24 hours to move the car. I hate it.

Travel is harder than it used to be, and more expensive with all the extra stuff. When the Eurostar was new they had brilliant deals for people under twenty five and I would occasionally wake up in the morning and just decide to go to Paris. That kind of thing feels much harder, not least because I’m not 22 and idle anymore. Saudi is going to be hard work.

I’ve had to be really organised in a way that I’m not used to at all on this turnaround. I’ve thought through my wardrobe as best I can. I’ve charged up enough of my devices to sustain me through the 8 hours or so I’ll be in the air. I stopped at Waterstones for a new book. I think I’m going to be ok out there despite the quick turnaround.

But now I’m stymied because this little rip off clinic place in Putney is leaving it to the wire in order to analyse my snot and tell me what I already know – that I don’t have Covid right now.

… and the email came through. I don’t have Covid. £99 for less than 5 minutes of attention. They are paying rental on a little cubicle in the Putney Exchange. They have a nurse and a receptionist and then somebody with a qualification who writes the thing you have to show them before you get on the plane. But when I arrived ten minutes before I was due there were two people waiting outside and another one in there getting tested. This Covid testing lark is big money however you look at it.

Well at least I’m certain now. I’m gonna book this parking and go to bed and I’m really not looking forward to tomorrow morning. Hopefully I’ll set enough alarms. Zoom.

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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