Living in the age of corona

No chuckles this week, not when up until a few days ago the Government’s plans to deal with the coronavirus epidemic would’ve led to a quarter of a million deaths in this country.

Thursday, 19th March 2020, 5:00 pm

At the end of last week the chief scientific adviser spoke of building up the “herd immunity” and the Prime Minister asked a company which makes diggers to have a go at making ventilators because we’ve only got 5,000. Now the penny has dropped after researchers warned of how the NHS would be overwhelmed and that by summer, Britain would look like Threads after the nuclear warheads exploded.

Life as we know it has stopped. We are down to the bare basics. Work, home, eat, sleep, repeat. And completing Netflix.

A week ago daughter #1 got a message from her university that all face-to-face classes including lectures, seminars and tutorials were cancelled for the rest of the academic year. The university is in the process of setting up courses to run online so students’ progress is unaffected. Daughter #1 says university life has shut down and she’s clearing out her room and coming home. By the time you’re reading this, she’ll be back in her childhood bedroom, fixing up part-time work at a supermarket that resembled a Poll Tax riot last weekend when panic buyers made the Black Friday whoppers look like choirboys.

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Daughter #2’s sixth form director emailed parents with the message they were closed to students until the end of the week and would be back in contact by Friday to confirm arrangements for the following week.

Students were told the college is preparing for remote teaching and learning should the Government instruct them to do so.

It all feels surreal - like war, but without the bullets and bombs, against an enemy we can’t see.