Well, we all knew that it was coming, and it has been a long time coming. For some of us it cannot come soon enough and for others we are more hesitant, particularly given how many cases there are in the UK at the moment.
To be honest I did think that good old Boris would decide that life should go back to normal on the 19th July as I imagine he needs to keep people happy (e.g., businesses and other MP’s) however once again it feels as though he is passing the buck to society by telling us to use common sense as we move forward. Is he completely ignorant of how selfish and ignorant a large proportion of society is?! Give them an inch and they will take a mile! I have already seen people blatantly not wearing face masks on buses and refusing to wear them in shops despite what the rules are and security guards reminding them of this. I only imagine that now he has made the announcement that social distancing rules and face masks being compulsory are going out the window on 19th July that people will think they do not need to bother anymore.
I understand that we are going to have to learn to live with Covid and that will involve an element of risks and unknown factors, however I do not understand why Boris has said that masks will no longer be compulsory. Given that cases are increasing, hospital admissions are on the rise again and not everyone has had both vaccines, yet I would have thought that face masks would have been the one thing to have stayed at least until things improved or until all over 18’s had been offered both vaccines. (Or at least in schools, on public transport, hospitals, large gatherings etc.)
I wonder how businesses feel now that they have implemented all the one-way systems, screens, signs, hand gel etc about taking it all away? Will they be jumping for joy to be able to remove them all or will they want to be able to keep some of these things in place? Personally, I hope that hand gel will remain a part of life, after all, it has been noted how general illnesses have plummeted during covid and hand gel is bound to have played a part in this (as well as face masks).
I have enjoyed booking for events and knowing that numbers are limited so now I am not sure how I will feel about going out particularly in indoor venues such as a cinema.
I never thought that I would feel comfortable wearing a face mask, but they have become part of the norm and personally I will continue to wear one in supermarkets and crowded venues even though I have been double jabbed.
I hope more than anything that people will be kind to one another as we take the next step into life that will be as close to pre-Covid as possible. I hope we will not judge one another whether we decide to wear face masks or not, whether we jump at the first chance to go to a nightclub or whether we are more hesitant about going out once restrictions are removed. After all, it has been more than 16 months since we were able to go out and about without face masks and without keeping our distance from one another. My youngest daughter certainly cannot remember a time before Covid and one of her first words was hand gel.
However, you feel about restrictions lifting I hope you will remember to be kind to yourself and others and treasure the memories made during lockdown. Although it has been bizarre and at times incredibly challenging, I have made lots of wonderful memories and have made a photo album for both lockdowns to remind ourselves of these treasured times. I mean, when else would I be having a birthday tea party whilst playing musical chairs in my 30’s rather than going away?! I got to spend so much quality time with my children and mum and I am incredibly grateful for those times.