The Corona Diaries – Day 164

Today was another warm but cloudy day. I used it to climb up the ladder and paint the upstairs windows. I don’t much like climbing high up ladders, particularly with a pot of paint and a paintbrush. It feels kind of dangerous. The good news is that I haven’t fallen off yet.

I went for my customary 10K walk up my hill, wrote a poem and did some work on the Roy Harper book.

It’s been a good day so far.

As far as Corona virus goes – not quite so good. The kids are all going back to school and it looks as if this might not be such a good idea. Dewin sent through this connection to SKWAWKBOX with some sobering thoughts and news.

The SKWAWKBOX reported on Thursday that the number of coronavirus outbreaks in schools in Scotland and Northern Ireland had rocketed – and that five English schools had been hit only a couple of days after pupils returned to the classroom. 81 schools in Northern Ireland and Scotland, which reopened schools earlier, were affected – up from 53 just five days before.

Those numbers were badly obsolete almost as soon as they were reported.

Before the end of Thursday, the number of schools hit across the UK had broken 100 – and in England, it had risen from 5 to 11.

Those numbers represent a near-doubling in Scotland and Ireland in just five days – and a more than doubling in England with a single day. The numbers by the close of school hours were as follows:

• Wales 1
• England 11
• N. Ireland 15
• Scotland 73

Northern Ireland has commissioned a new emergency ‘Nightingale’ COVID-19 hospital in expectation that its increasing infection rates will become a fully-fledged ‘second wave’.

Transmission among pupils has now been confirmed, while studies have already demonstrated both that children carry the same viral load as adults – and that the virus can spread like wildfire both within schools and from them to families and the surrounding community,

Given the backdrop of rising numbers – 1742 new cases yesterday – it looks like this is about to skyrocket. The second wave is imminent.

Then we come to the issue of the obnoxious Tony Abbott being given a high position as a Trade Negotiator. When asked about this sickening imbecile and his misogynism, racism and climate denial this is what Johnson said:

‘I obviously don’t agree with those sentiments at all, but then I don’t agree with everyone who serves the government in an unpaid capacity on hundreds of boards across the country, and I can’t be expected to do so.

What I would say about Tony Abbott is this is a guy who was elected by the people of the great, liberal, democratic nation of Australia. You’ve been to Australia – it’s an amazing country, it’s a freedom-loving country, it’s a liberal country. There you go. I think that speaks for itself.’

It’s the usual wriggling nonsense. He doesn’t go on to say that Australia booted him out of office pretty quickly because he is such a repulsive character.

But this is the company Johnson keeps these days. If they are not extreme right-wing nutcases they are not in.

Speaking of right-wing nutcases – in the USA there were another 42973 cases but Brazil still pipped them with another 43,773. And still a lot of people support the two imbeciles. Another 1078 deaths in the States – taking the total up to 189,000 (a figure that can squarely be laid at Trump’s door) while Brazil slipped into second place with just 834 deaths. I say just – but each one of those deaths is a tragedy for family and friends.

Anyway, I’m off to do the painting. Take care everybody! Stay safe.

10 thoughts on “The Corona Diaries – Day 164

  1. Opher, for me, re-opening schools has got to be a good move. When the Swiss re-opened schools in June, there was a surge in new cases about two weeks after. But no surge in deaths. Let’s see in the stats, shall we? I plan to do another of my COVID articles around the end of September.

    As to Tony Abbott, that is interesting. Johnson is a buffoon, but not an idiot. I suspect he has asked for a second opinion. This is the third indication I have seen in a month of a “sea change” in UK political class thinking on the “climate change” issue. Maybe I contributed to that, with my diatribe against proposed restrictions on cars.

    1. Hi Neil – yes I think there will be a surge in cases due to schools going back. It’s a huge risk – particularly as they now know that kids carry the same virus load (even if asymptomatic) and are spreaders. This will be a test as to whether the death-rate goes up again – it’s already creeping – and there is a two-four week delay (maybe longer).
      I’d be interested in your next Covid report.
      As for Abbott – he is a complete tosser. My friends in Australia were pulling their hair out.
      One day you will realise that the evidence on climate change is conclusive and species extinctions are real. The impact we are having is terrible.

  2. Hey Opher,

    It was inevitable case numbers would surge as schools reopen, but quite how that translates into death-rates remain to be seen. Local lock-downs are more likely as the spread of C-19 doesn’t appear to be uniform across the U.K, perhaps that will mitigate the spread into the wider community.

    The scientific community have suggested that further case-surges will occur when universities reopen…when 3 million students converge at destinations having traveled from all over the U.K – and from overseas – including from hot-spots…and rise again as they head home for Christmas. Time will tell if their predictions are correct, but there remains great potential for further disruption, and further restrictions in our day-to-day lives. Christmas during a period of lock-down would be very saddening.

    An interesting article in the Guardian regarding C-19 and symptoms presented by children: ‘Covid symptoms: diarrhoea and vomiting may be key sign of coronavirus in children – study’ (1)

    And breaking news in the Skwawkbox regarding Russian vaccine detailed in the Lancet; ‘World’s oldest medical journal says Russian coronavirus vaccine safe and ‘highly’ effective.’ (2)

    Have a great weekend, stay safe and well.


    (1) –

    (2) –

    1. It’s interesting that – about the vomiting. I’m not surprised that we’re playing down the Russian vaccine. Even if it was superb I don’t think Johnson would touch it on principle!

      1. For the larger part, children develop only mild symptoms of C-19, if any symptoms at all, however, if the article regarding sickness and diarrhea is correct, it may provide a more readily observable clue (for teachers and parents) that they may be infected. It could help mitigate the spread of C-19.


      2. If it encourages a decision to have the child tested for C-19, as opposed to having them spend a day in bed, then that has to be a good thing, right?


      3. Certainly – and it will likely show up more cases. With our lamentable Track and Trace they need every bit of help they can get.

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