Coronavirus Diary 36 -Surprises, good and bad.

I’ve had a sore chest and temperature now for 3 days and slightly sore eyes.   Another week, another hopefully false Coronavirus alarm though can truly tell?  It’s quite amazing I think that on days like this I would normally be working 18 or 19 hours, walking miles and miles and talking incessantly.  To get ill so frequently is not amazing but to achieve so much every day despite it, is I think a little amazing.

Now that I’m into my 15th week of this nonsense I’m both surprised in good and bad ways of how people have helped or not.  With one or two exceptions, it is people further away who have helped the most.

Massive and repeated food parcels and donations from San Francisco and Chicago including from a friend I haven’t seen since 1996.  Donations from a relation 330 miles away and regular shopping trips from people 20 miles away.

Offers of help from neighbours I haven’t met who have seen the sign by my door; the postman has even taken mail from me so I don’t have to go to a postbox.

Then there are people who one would have every reason to think they might check if you need anything but haven’t.  It’s a bit sad as I’m always ready to help everyone with advice, physical action or money and those who know that most have been those sorely missing in action.

Maybe they are just self-absorbed or perhaps it is the friends equivalent of ghosting; it being one thing to be friendly to someone who is seemingly high-flying on an upward trajectory but another thing when they are well and truly down on their luck.

Perhaps they have fallen into the Middle-Class.  A newspaper published an article of 15 signs that the lockdown shows you are middle class… zoom parties, a sudden urge to bake, wellness, an urge to live more simply in the future.  I’m relieved to say that none apply to me!

I don’t expect anything of anyone and nothing makes you self-sufficient like being introverted, bereaved, unemployed, self-employed and moving house when living alone without any help whatsoever.

You can’t rely on anyone. I know people are useless, they are, others are, I am too.   I’ve still made 3 or 4 calls to people and I generally can go all year without calling.  Checking up on those who like me live alone or who have suffered bereavements in their families due to the virus or have chronic health conditions.

I like helping people and even having been attacked, robbed in my own home, pushed under a train these last few months nothing has changed.  I’ll still be the person who carries shopping for old ladies, giving my seat up for the elderly on public transport, helping or giving money to complete strangers or simply talking to total down and outs who have nothing and who a gift of a 20 minute conversation as equal people is almost the best thing in the world to them.

Maybe it is because these days so many people are all talk, always making promises and commitments without ever thinking they might have to deliver on them.  I think I have only made 3 promises in the last 15 years, I like substance over style.

I’m sure one day I’ll be found 15 weeks after I’ve died, half eaten by ravenous pet dogs…. mental note to self, I need to buy some pet dogs.

About Stephen Liddell

I am a writer and traveller with a penchant for history and getting off the beaten track. With several books to my name including a #1 seller, I also write environmental, travel and history articles for magazines as well as freelance work. Recently I've appeared on BBC Radio and Bloomberg TV and am waiting on the filming of a ghost story on British TV. I run my own private UK tours company (Ye Olde England Tours) with small, private and totally customisable guided tours run by myself!
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5 Responses to Coronavirus Diary 36 -Surprises, good and bad.

  1. I quite enjoyed today’s post. Thank you for being human, and making me feel as such myself. Same experience with people, but there is comfort always to be found in remembering that we are all animals after all, and can’t be expected to constantly fly as high as our intellect might take us, in total disregard for our earthly tethers. Gotta have some soup with our philosophy.
    I do hope you feel better and get better soon.
    I am stuck in Italy, missing my grown kids, but country living is heavenly, if a bit boring.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m glad my post brought you some solace. People are very strange beings and capable of such kindness and brilliance but also sheer ineptitude and selfishness. Thank-you, I hope you manage to see your kids soon. Yes, I feel the same, a bit bored but grateful to be bored where I am.

      Like

  2. You are not alone Stephen….sounds like many people around are who are supporting you and helping with things, people can be amazing and they cam be horrible too…it’s such a mixed bag. Always here if you want to chat

    Liked by 1 person

  3. modestly says:

    Hell is other people!! Hope you feel stronger soon…

    Liked by 1 person

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