An uneventful day to bring to an end a relatively Hebden Bridge-bound period of the blog, but there are trips away planned for much of the rest of July. Why the monochrome? As so often — because it covers up red blotches caused by lens flare.
Since the start of the Great Fear it’s been the cities, like Manchester, which have felt the most alien and empty. Shoppers have come back, but not yet tourists nor office workers. Whether or not those latter groups will return, and how, is still an open question. But this stage, being built for the Manchester International Festival is, to me, a sign of optimism — yet there are still so many lockdown-loving lunatics out there (most obviously in the Labour Party) that we may never be sure of anything again. Covid ain’t going away, anyone. We will be catching it, ‘testing positive’ for it, for the rest of our lives. Get used to it.
And where are all the people who should be in the empty offices, as pictured yesterday? Trapped behind these magic mirrors, in some kind of netherworld. Myth becomes life, and slowly we fade away, losing more and more connections with the reality we once knew.
As Authority has graciously agreed to let us move around a bit (not abroad though — the mind-broadening experience that is foreign travel remains denied to the majority of us, until further notice); I have some friends with whom I need to reacquaint myself. Let’s start with George, making her fourth appearance on the blog. And very pleasant it was to see her, indeed.
As we approach the first anniversary of the Great Fear, Saturdays have largely become the most uneventful day of the week. My activity, or otherwise, on them has become governed by the weather. This aftenroon was very pleasant — so out I went. The local sheep population had a spring in its step, too.
The establishment in question is located somewhere round here but that sign isn’t pointing to it. Instead it just presides over a mostly empty car park, where there should be signs of visitors, shoppers, people just hanging out in the town centre on a Saturday.
One of the lies we’ve been sold over the last year centres around the notion of ‘essentia’ and ‘non-essential’ retail. Amazon can compel their drones to go work in warehouses that are centres of virus transmission, but I am not allowed to patronise a local bookshop, nor to buy a pair of shoes. This has been an unparalleled opportunity to shaft small businesses, one the Tories (backed up by Labour, who are even worse) have taken with glee, while puttng on their concerned face, and telling us it’s all for our own good. Not if you are a business owner, I imagine. But that’s OK, we can just blame them for ‘not adapting’, like not inventing a way to get nails done online. Sorry to break out into this again, but there’ll be weeks more of this crap yet.