The Corona Diaries – Day 406

I got up this morning to bright sunshine but this afternoon it has been pouring with rain. Fortunately I went for my walk in the morning. I walked up my hill. I’d noticed a single swallow yesterday. Today there were three. They appeared to be squabbling. I’d never seen swallows behaving that way before. I think it was two males vying for the attentions of one female. The hedges were alive with gold finches, chaffinches and great tits. I also spotted a long-tailed tit. Nesting is in full swing despite the cool weather. I came back and have been writing and playing some Roy Harper.

I needed an eye appointment. My glasses are not as effective as they were!! The optician claimed to be covid-friendly. Didn’t seem too hot to me. We were in there for over an hour and having someone peering in your eyes that close, even with a mask on, is not that brilliant. If I hadn’t had my second jab I would not have been too happy.

Out in Coronaland the pressure is still on sleazey Johnson. There was a good article in the I today talking about Starmer and Johnson and comparing the two:

Imagine you had a choice of two men to run your family finances, maybe also to fix your insurance policies and oversee your kids’ education. One of them has a smart suit, sober haircut and previously rose from an ordinary background to the top of his profession in public service.

Perhaps a bit bland, even a bit boring, but undoubtedly competent, decent and a safe pair of hands for your cash. The alternative could not be more different: a dishevelled upper-crust rogue with a messy private life who was dismissed from previous jobs for dishonesty, moans endlessly about being broke and always disappears when it is time to pay for his round in the pub. 

Boris Johnson poses as a man standing up for struggling families while living a life even he cannot afford (

I thought it was perhaps a bit too kind on Johnson – more of an overprivileged cynical chancer pretending to be affable. He whines about not being about to live on an income of £200,000 and spends £840 a roll on bloody wallpaper. A man of the ordinary people?? Suckers!!

Maybe people are beginning to wake up to how they’ve been taken for a ride? The Tories just dived in the polls! We can but hope!!

Here the vaccination program has brought deaths down to almost zero. Great news. They are looking to open up foreign travel but the only problem is the chance of bringing variants back into the country. I’m sure that can be circumvented with a good track and trace system – oops, silly me. Yep – we’d better not travel abroad.

A lot of people were opposed to the idea of lockdowns altogether. I wasn’t. Being a biologist I was well aware of the dangers of a pandemic. The scientific advice – socially distance, lockdown, facemasks, antiviral gels and washing hands – makes perfect sense to me.

You need a fair whack of virus to become infected. Either through long exposure (such as with NHS workers, carers, shop workers etc.) or close exposure with an infected person.

This virus travels mainly by aerosol. It is dispersed outside. Distance greatly reduces the spread.

Inside the virus hangs about in the air. It lands on surfaces. It’s exuded in sweat. Anything you touch. You need to ventilate and distance more.

Wearing a mask catches a percentage of the aerosol you breathe out – hence reducing infection.

Staying indoors and having no contact obviously stops transmission.

Using a gel kills the virus. Washing hands after touching anything from outside obviously kills the virus.

Maybe those people who were complaining about having to do this are now getting a glimpse of life where lockdown wasn’t introduced with the tragedy of Brazil, India and Trumpist USA. Look how the rates have come down with Biden and new rules.

India is a disaster because Modi encouraged huge religious gathering without distancing or masks.

Brazil is a disaster because Bolsonaro has refused to lockdown and has pooh-poohed masks and distancing.

The USA was a disaster because Trump made social distancing and masks political and didn’t enforce things.

The UK was a disaster because Johnson did not lockdown quickly enough, was too complacent and did not bring in masks.

People say – ‘But nobody knew’. But that isn’t true. The WHO advice was clear. Other countries, such as New Zealand, Vietnam and Singapore locked down quickly and deployed track and trace. It could have been done. It was arrogance that killed so many!!

Now I have had two jabs I am waiting for immunity to peak and I am back to normal. They will be opening up other countries (with good levels of covid and no variants) and I will be off travelling again! I will consider my risks to be back to normal!

Freedom beckons. Two weeks to go!

Stay safe!!