There ARE some... | 22/3/2020
I've been around long enough to have seen SARS, MERS and Swine Flu come and go - but they were nothing like the current Covid-19 shitstorm.
It's a worrying time, sure enough - but dwelling on the negatives; and fearing the worst; are unhealthy mindsets. So I've decided to make a brief list of my Reasons To Be Cheerful in the face of the pandemic - you should do it too.
(Some of these might not, on first blush, seem like "good" things - but context is everything.)
- I don't have any elderly or otherwise vulnerable family to worry about;
- I'm 59, but I'm fit and strong, without any underlying health concerns, so I'm not obviously at the highest degree of risk;
- I live alone, so I'm "social distancing" like a champ as soon as I close the door;
- Because I live alone, I don't need as much shopping. Me "hoarding" would be a normal shop for a family;
- Having been retired for almost a year, I'm used to being in the house on my own;
- This also means no more public transport commutes - it was bad enough health-wise before this all kicked off;
- It also also means that I'm financially secure - not having to work means not having to worry about not working;
- I'm extremely lucky in that I don't really get bored, and I quite like my own company, so the sense of isolation isn't a big thing for me;
- My local shops don't seem to have been overly badly hit by the selfish twats who are buying up and hoarding anything that isn't bolted down;
- I have a reasonably large garden, so I can get some fresh air when I want to without having to leave my own home;
- I can still find places to go for a walk without being elbow-to-elbow with other people;
- I'm an optimist by nature - I don't expect the worst to happen;
- There is already some initial evidence that existing, readily-available anti-viral treatments - such as combined Chloroquine and Zinc - are efficacious against Covid-19;
- Red wine availability doesn't seem to have been impacted by the current situation. Yes, this is A Thing - a glass or two of an evening is one of life's little pleasures, and - God knows - we need them right now;
- I have a few quid in the bank, some of which I plan to use on something very tangible when this is all over: I'll be re-doing my motorcycle Compulsory Basic Training (CBT) and then buying a Zero S electric motorcycle;
- It will end. I know that seems a long way off right now, but it will, and I fully intend to be around to see the day: statistically there's no reason to think I might not be...
I'll also add a couple which aren't related to the virus, but which still add to the mood of optimism.
In the last year or two, both the pilot light on the gas fire in my living room; and the breaker for the downstairs wall sockets; stopped working - the pilot light would not stay on, and the breaker would not reset. My house is quite chilly in Winter, even with the heating on (it's double-glazed, but it's a 1920s build) so having the fire on added a welcome lift to comfort levels; and the inconvenience of having to run an extension cable in from the kitchen (which is on a different circuit) in order to power my TV, hi-fi, PC etc. is self-explanatory. There was no obvious fault with any of the sockets, and the problem didn't seem to relate to whatever was plugged in, so a repair was probably going to involve rewiring the entire downstairs ring - something I just couldn't face.
- Well, about a month ago, curiosity got the better of me, so I tried them again, and inexplicably, without me taking any new remedial action, both the pilot light and the breaker have started working perfectly again.
- I heard my first Chiffchaff (a tiny migrant warbler, a welcome portent of Spring and Summer) today.
So that's my little list of positives. It's not all roses in the garden though - of course not - but I've always believed that there's no point worrying about things I can't change.
I can choose how to think and what to think about though, so I choose to focus on the good...