Third shot in a row taken in Manchester, and that’s the first time that has happened since early February 2020. I’m pulling an early one, too. Manchester, in need of some kind of symbol (as everything has to have a ‘brand’ these days), has adopted the bee, and statues like this in a variety of colours crop up at points in the city.
“Go back to the office!” says the Chief Clown, though going on numbers coming through Manchester Victoria in the mornings, most of the population (those who can, anyway) feel quite happy with the idea that they might make this judgment on their own. Admittedly 2pm isn’t peak time but one still might have expected a few more people around.
POSTSCRIPT: To be fair, I was browsing earlier pictures just now and found this one from almost exactly 5 years ago (25th Jan. 2017), of the same spot; and there weren’t any people on that one, either. Comparison of the two photos also shows how the light shines through exactly the same bit of the roof at this exact time of day in late January; and the photogenic consequences of this.
Three weeks and two days until Joe goes off to university, the psychological implications of which (for us all) remain unexplored. But at least we can get the logistics prepared, so he accompanied me to Manchester today to pick up practical stuff, plates, cutlery, you know, things that mean he won’t have to eat off the floor. Will this be the last shot of him in this particular city? Impossible to say what the future will bring.
I had a work meeting today, that included lunch, face-to-face with two other people. The rail service is having its annual summer ‘upgrading’ spasm and so my journey to and from this meeting was a complex — but not, it should be said, unpunctual — tangle of three different trains, two buses and a taxi.
All in all then, a sense of normality returns (perhaps leaving out the bit about punctuality).
One would like to think the Great Fear of 2020-21 is coming to an end, but I suspect absurdities like this stairway to remain, possibly permanently. An attempt to enforce ‘social distancing’ leads to everyone crowding closer together than they would otherwise have done. But it makes it look like Authority has Done Something, and we will probably never be permitted to go back and say — you know, all that stuff actually had no effect at all, did it? Too late now.
This morning was one of those occasions where a minor diversion from my usual route — in this case, leaving Victoria station by a different exit — helped me spot an opportunity for a picture. I had never noticed the S & M nature of this war memorial before. People pay to get trampled in this fashion: or so I’m informed. Actually I think the sub creature is an imp, or little devil of some kind, rather than a cherub: but the wings took longer to see.
I had to go into Manchester today to pick up some things. This is the 611th photo on this blog that has been taken in the city — but quite possibly the last for some time, unless things change radically. But as you can see, social distancing was maintained. What my feelings are about the steps currently being taken are not relevant here: like I’ve done for the last 3,130 days, I will just do my best to document what I see.