As the lockdown continues we count ourselves very lucky to be stuck at the marina and, as described in an earlier post we have been keeping ourselves busy with various challenges between us motley crew on our narrow boats. However, this bank holiday weekend is a very special one celebrating the 75th anniversary of Victory in Europe and I think its such a huge shame that all of the wonderful events planned to honour our servicemen and women were unable to go ahead.

Of course the good old British spirit is strong with Lee and I and we were determined to make the best of it so out came the massive Union Flag and bunting to adorn our boat with and I must say it gave me a feeling of national pride, yes we are true patriots and not ashamed of it even though some feckless people frown upon it. Also, what could be more ‘British’ than the pub garden so as we can’t go down the pub we brought the pub garden to us complete with make shift pub sign, music and of course ales, wine and gin!

The Woodgnome Arms pub garden

Now some may be thinking this is all rather silly but you know what? It makes us feel better, lifts our spirits whilst also giving the others stuck here at the marina a bit of a laugh which is very important during these times. The one minute silence yesterday (Friday) was observed impeccably, power tools were downed, chatter stopped and we took a moment to remember those who gave their lives for our freedom, although I must admit that seems a bit of an oxymoron right now as we have our first little taste of ‘communism light’ as I half jokingly call it.

Whilst on one hand we are doing our very best to keep positive I must say at this point as we head into our 8th week in lockdown I am starting to get a bit restless and I’m not honestly sure what all of this is doing to our mental health, and of course I desperately miss my mum although modern technology has been a god send so at least I can video chat with her and get more of a feeling of how she looks and is coping with all of this. And then there is my children and grandchildren but I’m not quite so worried about them as they are young and are spending quality time with their own families.

Happier times with our grandson Conor aboard the boat

Our mental health aside I probably worry most about how we survive financially both personally and as a country and what price will have to be paid. I find it astounding that there are so many people quite happy to be sitting at home on 80% of their wage somehow thinking they will never have to pay it back. Well here’s some news, you will through your future taxes, that is if the company you work for survives and you have a job to go back to. On a personal note I am self employed and am getting no help whatsoever and at this point have a 50/50 chance of getting through this if lockdown ends within the next 6-8 weeks. Lee owns a hair salon and right now it’s looking like they will not be able to survive if this continues much longer which of course means her staff that are on furlough will have no job to go back to.

Virtual Mothers Day card I sent to my mum

I am absolutely aware that many reading this will be shouting ‘so you want people to die’ – utterly lazy argument nonsense. I see it on Facebook and Twitter every single day, anyone that questions the lockdown gets pounced upon by a pack of ill-educated wolves who’s only source of information is to copy and paste other people’s posts spouting the same nonsense on social media that they heard from the irresponsible mainstream media. I could easily respond to the ‘you want people dead’ rubbish by calling for a ban on cars – they kill people too but of course that is absurd too. How many of these wolves know how many died of flu during the 1968-9 winter – it’s a hell of a lot more in the UK than this pandemic. How many people know that on average 1.5m people die a year of HIV, it’s been higher than 2.5m in some years. Shall we ban sex?

Now I am not saying you should not take this pandemic seriously, what I am saying is perhaps do a little research yourself (away from the mainstream media) before condemning those that have a differing opinion. Go have a look at some published figures, go look at what they are classing as Covid deaths (many are pneumonia) and see if you think it is right and if you think the media has been honest with those figures, there’s a lot of evidence out there that may shock you. I suppose what I am ultimately saying is have an open mind, be open to other ideas and perhaps the next time you are on social media post something original rather than more scaremongering bollocks.