Not Very Trendy

As France falls into a situation that it will not dig itself out of easily or quickly (nationwide lockdown #3 coming soon, I think), I find myself thinking that this is too bad. However, I also find myself thinking that not much will change for me. Why? Let me illustrate with a simple graph:

The orange line illustrates either Covid numbers in France, percentage of ICU beds taken by Covid patients, national lockdowns, or even the number of BBQs in the country – it’s your choice because they’re all connected.

The blue line is my life, which, other than a little car trip we did early last summer, has really remained unchanged. When the curfew was put in place a couple of months ago, I was at home at 6pm, but before the curfew I was also at home at 6pm. When restaurants closed again (in the summer they were open) in October, I didn’t go out, but I also didn’t go out beforehand. Same goes for the cinema, museums, and shops that aren’t selling food, beer and home improvement paraphernalia. The only thing that I really took advantage of was the increased radius for cycling, but even there I have not ventured very far at all since all of this badness began.

I know people who have exactly the same attitude as me, i.e. no matter what the government lets us do or not do, there is an underlying reality that we don’t ignore – the virus is still with us and it will perhaps be with us till we stop it from propagating. If we all stay at home, it will go away. If half of us insist on going out to eat when we don’t need to, working from the office when we don’t need to, having dinner parties with friends when we don’t need to and seeing family for Easter when we don’t need to, the virus will spread.

I also know an equal number of people who are very irritated by the restrictions put on us and either don’t heed them for at least some part, or act differently once these restrictions are lifted. And who can blame them? When the French government told us to travel around the country and prop up the tourist industry last summer, how can we put any blame on folks who are just following orders? Even those youngsters who insist on having clandestine parties have my sympathy – nobody could keep me from hanging with friends when I was 20.

A friend of mine stated the other day that she wouldn’t want to be in the shoes of decision makers right now. There is simply no way that they will make the ‘right’ choice. Macron tried a couple of months ago with his ‘third way’ of not doing a hard lockdown, which looked to be working till a few weeks ago. Now I expect to see him on the TV very soon (you only hear from the President when it’s bad news), telling us that we have to stay at home again.

I’ll be here when he comes on.

12 thoughts on “Not Very Trendy

  1. Are vaccines readily available yet? It’s hard to describe here because we still have cases, although far fewer than we did and it’s starting to look like a return to normalcy. We are even resuming a casual group ride next week although only with fully vaccinated people.

    • Readily available for old folks, but even then maybe not really ‘readily’. It’s just slow, Aaron, and frustrating. They keep saying they’ll be upping the speed and I could be vaccinated in April if all the stars align. Not holding my breath.

      The US has done a nice turnaround, that’s for sure. Most of our clients are from California and they’re all wondering when they’ll be able to come over because they’re all ‘immune’!

      • There seems to be a lot of vaccine supply and I think it’ll get to you soon. We also started with the elderly and health workers, which I think is the right approach. It opened up here within a few weeks to other groups. Not sure why the slowness in Europe but I hope you get your dose before long. April is not far away, and even if pushed out, looking good for riding in the summer. We are thinking of you.

        • There’s not a lot of supply here. It’s supposed to improve starting next week, but certainly not at the scale Biden is rolling things out. The US and UK were less risk averse & frugal when it came to buying doses (ditto for Israel). The US also has the enormous advantage of manufacturing the new ARN messenger vaccines on its own soil. And as sluggish as things for the old continent, most of the world doesn’t really have any supply.

  2. Amen. Although the only reason why it looked like Macron’s ‘third way’ was initially working was that Covid Classic cases were waning, while British Covid was gaining ground.

    As for myself, I tried to rebel today by biking a wee bit beyond my 10k leash so I could enjoy today’s summer weather along the car-free bike path along the Marne. Then my rear tire went flat (tubeless lacking latex). I guess I’m just not destined to rebel.

    And I do grit my teeth seeing Parisians I know now posting rides from freakin’ Spain on Strava!

    • Parisians in Spain…how much more typical could you get these days!

      Nice attempt at a ride, no matter how it ended. I’m actually frightened by the weather right now, but that’s another blog post.

      What’s you expert opinion? Are we headed for lockdown?

      • My bet is they’ll close schools, and tighten the noose on essential shops (I mean, how can haircuts and flowers be essential right now?). As for our personal leashes, what with the weather these days & the advantage to f staying outdoors, I can’t see being limited to 1km for 1 hour/day again – no one would respect it! But perhaps no outdoor gatherings (beyond your immediate household) – you must keep moving. Although that could be just my wishful thinking!

  3. I can fully sympathise with your lifeline since lockdown. Ours has been much the same. Apart from taking my car to be serviced (the only competent garage is 20 miles away) and going to hospital, we basically haven’t left Langholm for a year. I have been keeping my cycle rides local too but since I have now got my second vaccine shot, I might venture a little further tomorrow just for the hell of it..

    • It’s hard not to travel, especially when you have family in other places (everybody these days, basically). You haven’t even ventured to Edinburgh to visit your son/daughter? Langholm looks like a nice place to be confined at least. And yes, now that you’re indestructible, let ‘er rip, TP!

  4. You could have written the same blog if you were living here. Unfortunately, it seems to be a familiar story the world over but especially in Europe due to the poor availability of the vaccine. The EU really ballsed that up and don’t seem willing to admit their mistake. There are rumours we might get excess vaccine from the UK once they are finished in order to provide additional protection for Northern Ireland and mainland Britain. Makes sense but don’t think the EU are happy about it!

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