I was just asked to leave a pub. Something, which you might not believe, I have not been asked to do since the 1990s. A time where I can remember being prompted into many ridiculous scenarios which resulted in me being told off for dancing on tables and being ‘ladettish’ in my behaviour. But that was then, this is now…2020.
What had I done? To clarify, I was asked to leave a place where I had spent much money in; already being encouraged (by the same member of staff) to spend a lot more than I intended to. Our mutual agreement being cemented with extra wine and the offer of a wonderful cheeseboard for our supper. I followed all covid guidelines and I was a model customer.
They were lovely people: Friendly, helpful and masters of their trade. And as true professionals, they asked us to leave.
Were we unruly? Were we swearing? (Him was also asked to leave) Did I complain about the quality of their fish pie (no, that was yesterday and in another place entirely). Instead, it was because it was nearing the time of 10pm and ‘everyone knows that that is the time of closing’
NB: Apart from a lady and gentleman who were oblivious to the current climate:
‘what time do you close? 11.30?’
‘The new curfew -10pm…’
‘Oh, we had no idea. When did that start?’
‘Explanation – ‘errrr we are also nearing the next lockdown…’ replied the bewildered waitress.
Stifled and shocked laughter from us ear-weighing customers. Thoughts that it might be nice to live in such a bubble…
But clueless customers aside (true story) we all know this is certainly a sign of the times.
Last Saturday evening and our esteemed leader announced the next stage in our united effort against covid. Therefore, with the knowledge of being stripped of our freedom for the second time in a year; plus, with the added worry of the covid-net tightening in our area, we decided to have our last hurrah!
Now don’t get me wrong or get all finger-pointy, but Him and I have been good citizens throughout the whole palaver of 2020. Staying in, saving the NHS, clapping hands; observing: hands, face, space; eating out to help out (we were particularly good at that one)…we’ve followed the guidelines and generally avoided busy places. So, in full sensible mode, we carefully planned a little trip. And what a little breath-of-fresh-air-whirlwind it’s been!
This needs to come with the caveat: it took me a while to get there (mentally both and physically back)
Firstly, I booked it two weeks ago on a whim. And those of you who know me, will be aware that as soon as I booked the hotel that I went into self-loathing and a guilt-ridden state of being.
‘What was I thinking?’ (That we really needed a break)
‘What if lockdown happens and we lose our money?’ (It did and we did)
‘I can’t leave the children and Rosie!’ (It seems we can)
And the day before, when the hotel took my money and then promptly cancelled our booking, I wondered if it was all worth it (I still have no refund but we got lucky with hotel number two).
Everything happens for a reason and yes, as light as my pocket now is (still awaiting a refund…) the royal princess in me was suitably impressed.
Although things started unpromising – with sand still in my ‘dry cleaned’ coat pocket. AND, my new boots causing blisters, I put my first-world-spoilt-princess problems to one side and got over myself…I managed to relax quite quickly by playing good music, booking a slap up lunch and parking close to the restaurant. It was a win win (first world solutions).
And from that moment forward, the shoulders released and I felt that familiar feeling that ensues when we pass a certain place on a path we like to travel into said county.
And although I shoved away the guilt, I still felt an air of anxiety about entering a new community – albeit safely – one which resembled a ghost town, with its shut up shops and empty lobster pots. So I decided to develop a bravery (I’ve fought for it) where I’d go out, embrace life, and not be ashamed to ask lovely staff members to help me with my ailing sight.
I was blinking glad I did!
I wore fabulous trousers made of leather and indulged like it was Christmas…
And why not? With the dreaded words ‘four week lockdown’, Twenty-four hours previously, I saw a world unravelling around me. There were ladies panic buying jigsaws in Home Bargains. I witnessed a rancid last-fish-supper being served up ‘we are emptying our fridges’ (there are limits). And I watched friends, people I care and respect, shutting up their successful businesses – yet again – all for the greater good. All in the belief we shall rise again!
I needed to breathe life. I needed to find hope…some inner peace.
And for a time we ate our own body weight in seafood. We had a luxurious cheese board (which makes me want to cry – I’ll be dreaming about that in the depths of November). And we stayed somewhere which would stand up as a winner on
Four in a Bed (seriously, we were very excited about the pillow spray, plasters, torch et al.) That touring this family favourite part of the coast, made me feel akin to RosieDog happily rolling in her own shit-like happiness. What’s not to love?
But that was then and this is now. I now need to look at what made me happy and inspired to move into the depths of November with an optimistic smile on my face. And this is the easiest task to try and action in these challenging times. All I need to say is that I’ve had spiritual highs and faith in myself lows. Therefore, there’s work to be done. And as scary as this is, my new trajectory is pushing me towards a brilliant life.
This last hurrah is only the end of a chapter. Maybe the next chapter is tricky and puts the reader on edge. But nothing brilliant comes easily. So, in the style of Plato, rather than a tragedien such as Euripides, I will continue to evolve with laughter in my soul and there will be catharsis for us all.
Watch this space.
Stay safe and love to all xxxx