The Corona Diaries – Day 592

Bright sunny day in Yorkshire. We drove over to Stamford Bridge to meet up with friends for a walk. Very pleasant walking around York, along the river and past the viaduct. We visited the Stamford Bridge tapestry and over to the battle site. Quite strange. There is no signage. It’s tucked away behind a housing estate.

The battle of Stamford Bridge is probably the second most important battle in English history. It was shortly followed by the most important battle. The battle at Stamford Bridge altered the whole of history.

Harold Godwinson (probably a relative of mine) was preparing to repel an invasion from William the Conqueror. Harold Hardrader and his Viking horde arrived in the North looking to conquer England. Harold Godwinson marched his army up to Stamford Bridge. There was a bloody battle and the Vikings were defeated. No sooner had they done that than William invaded. Harold marched his army down to Pevensey and the battle of Hastings took place. The French were very nearly beaten. But we lost. England was taken over for a vicious Norman rule.

Just think. If the Vikings had not invaded the English army would have been fresher, larger and not completely knackered. They would have thrown the French back into the sea. The history of Britain would have been different. The history of the world would have been different.

On such things major changes turn.

It’s a bit like Brexit isn’t it?

So I played some Beefheart and Joni Mitchell in the car!! Great.

Back home I’m working on the Captain Beefheart book!

Meanwhile, out in Coronaland, another battle for Britain is taking place. It too is happening on many fronts. The extreme right-wing nutters of the ERG, who have taken charge of the Tory Party thanks to the scheming of Dominic Cummings and the antics of a clown, are finally being attacked by the real Tories, in the form of John Major. Now the real Tories still represent the wealthy and like to hammer the poor and public servants but they do it in a decent way. They don’t come out with a pack of lies, break laws or are openly corrupt and sleazy. They do all that in a nicer way. They, being gentlemen, find this arrogant populism utterly repulsive. They find the antics of Johnson the clown distasteful. So Major did an all-out attack on him. It was great to hear.

Starmer, it seems, did a good job on the Andrew Marr show. I’ll have a listen later. But why he isn’t coming out all guns blazing is beyond me. He doesn’t seem to possess the fire in his belly. Labour should be 20 points clear instead of 4 points behind. The record of this government is so incredibly incompetent. It can be attacked on everything it has done from Brexit to Covid, through sleaze and corruption to lies and lawbreaking. They are a disgrace.

So, today there were loads more cases and deaths – according to the government centre – 30,150 new cases with 155 deaths – according to Sky News – 34,029 new cases with 193 deaths. I absolutely hate to side with Sky but I know who I believe more – and that’s quite a statement!!

The question is – have this wave peaked?? Looks like it may have.

It looks like enough kids have had it that there is a temporary herd immunity. As herd immunity is transient, immunity only lasting about six months, it looks like we may be locked in a cycle of 6 monthly booster jabs. This virus is not going away.

They are talking about restricting travel for those who are unboosted. Sounds reasonable to me. While vaccinated people can still spread it they are nowhere near as big spreaders as the unvaccinated.

The hospitals are still in trouble they are jammed full as much as at their winter peak – and we’re months off that winter period!

I had to laugh – Van Morrison is being sued by the Northern Ireland Health Minister. He’s a fool!!

On a positive note there are a number of good things coming out of this pandemic:

Loads of research to produce more vaccines. We should get a whole host of vaccines to counter many very unpleasant virus killer diseases.

Loads of research on antiviral drugs. About time we had serious work and funding to tackle viruses. We presently have no effective antivirals. We know the next pandemic is lurking somewhere. It could be in a chimp, a bat or a pangolin. It could be in a human. All it takes is a hunter or contact with an isolated group.

What if the next virus kills 80% instead of 2%?

Are we prepared????

Awareness of disease and hygiene has increased. That’s got to be good. More washing of hands, more distancing, less breathing over food.

Then there’s flexible working!! That’s great! Reduce office space. Work from home at least some of the week. Cut out all that commuting. Save time. Save energy. Pollute less!!

My booster is next week! Can’t wait!!

Stay safe!! Vote out the clown!!!

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