Well, another three weeks of lonely Lockdown, and my happiness hobbies still so strongly remain, crammed concert halls, ritzy restaurants, and non-essential businesses – drat!
I’m still madly missing my music, my mates, and my meals. My eerie eyelashes are now hidden behind my stylish Specs as I can’t get to the Opticians for my contact lens. My pearly whites are missing my three-month dental detox. And I’m going to be a rather brazen Brunette by the time we are all allowed out to play again.
Truth be told, I reckon whoever decided Beauticians and Hairdressers were non-essential businesses was definitely a butch bloke.
But, seriously though, it’s not all about me is it? It’s all about we, and sacrificing our own, usual, sometimes selfish, desires for the greater good to help flatten this crap Corona Virus peak to save our own, and others lives. Stay Safe is always the main message.
Call me old-fashioned, but I am happy looking like a hippy after adopting the ‘au naturel’ aura if it keeps us safe. I can cope with all cancelled concerts if it saves lives, and I can really go without that cliched ‘cheeky’ Nandos, if it protects the NHS.
So we must stay strong Barry, and keep on keeping on with the social distancing – that the majority of us have been happy to stick with while our community, our nation, and the wider world, tries to pack a punch to this Pandemic.
Believe me, I don’t say that lightly, I do feel your pain. For me, this new normal is a bit of a strangely surreal nightmare, the Lockdown Blues can make us feel lost and lonely. I get mildly melancholic for the lush, little life I used to live without a care in the world. And if I wasn’t working through this, I would be literally bouncing of the walls.
I’m not going to lie to you, this is not living is it. It’s solely surviving on auto pilot shuffling to the shops once a week, trotting around the block once a day, and driving regularly to work through a gaunt ghost town.
And, one thing I know for sure is that this is not the life I want to lead ad finitum. Masses of clichéd memes might tell you to think about the ‘New Normal’ and what you want to return to afterwards. Thanks for that, but I want to return to a life full of love, laughter, and living.
My lesson learnt is the things I will never again take for granted. Friday nights at Chapter, big Fam Birthday bashes, the roar of Cardiff City Football Stadium, throwing silly shapes on the dancefloor, Academy coffee dates, mooching around museums, Gigs with the Girls.
The freedom to crack on with City Breaks, pootle up the motorway to Maida Vale to live the London life, plus the beauty of a beach holiday in the scorching summer sun.
And of course, a return to the glamour and glitz of freshly painted nails, long flowing ‘Blondes Have More Fun’ locks, and eyebrows that would rival Madge.
To be fair though, I might drag some of my new found habits kicking and screaming into the brave new Post Covid 19 world.
This includes, a daily walk around the block with my Boy, my newly realised luck at having a glorious garden, a more absolute appreciation of all our carers – not sure I’ll still bang a saucepan into oblivion every Thursday night though.
And, ever since I panic bought a Hairy Bikers Casserole Pot in the early Barry Goes Bonkers days, a love of cooking up a treat every Tea Time– and from scratch…get me.
Be Kind I’ve also learnt should never be just a hashtag to make you look lovely on social media. We should all take a step back too, and practice what we preach.
Mind you, before I get myself, and my fabulous Blog Fans all excited, I don’t think we are going to snap out of this anytime soon.
Forget that timely Traffic Light Lockdown release system seen in The Sun this week. For me, we have a very long and winding road to walk down before the New Normal becomes the Old Normal Mark II.
In my view, we do need to start sorting out our exit strategy, and politicians are planning as I type. But this assumption, I have seen by some, that we are going to leave the Lockdown on a Sunday and a snap back to completely normal on Monday morning is just not going to happen. Trust me.
I reckon, to kickstart economic activity, we are realistically looking at a relaxation of rules bit by bit. To quote the title episode of my much-loved Killing Eve that came back on telly this week, it’s the old ‘Softly, Softly, Catchee Monkey,’ approach.
Sure we’ll see some businesses back open, schools may sometime have staggered starts, and public transport may play a part but only with strict social distancing measures.
And, heartbreakingly for me, those hobbies of mine will be at the back of the queue. I have realistically resigned myself to not making moves in any mosh pit, or losing myself live in Weller world, until at least next year.
Of course, its always fingers crossed for a cure, and that glimmer of hope that a vaccine will be found soon. I will be one of first in the queue for that if I can for sure.
But until then, in my view, seeing a second Corona Virus outbreak, finding friends lose loved ones so harshly, and crashing our care system, is so not worth it.
So thank you my top little town for playing the social distance game, for selflessly seeing how we can help the greater good, and for solidly remaining stoical in adversity.
Storms always pass….eventually!
Sue Vincent-Jones, writing as Mrs SVJ, is a Barry born journalist, editor, and communications specialist. She blogs about Barry – and her life in the wider world, through the eyes of a, quirky and queer, local girl done good.
One of Wales Arts Review 100 Women Writers of Wales, the dedicated community supporter, passionate arts lover, and award-winning queer activist, will keep you “informed, entertained and inspired.”
Please contact Mrs SVJ, Barry’s Boldest Blogger, here.