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Time to move to Spain

Medically retired at short notice our plans to move to Spain are brought forward by a few years. With little time to spare, this is our story.

Lockdown, day 7
22 March 2020 @ 15:35

Day 7 in the Corona Virus house... it’s Friday and one week after all bars and restaurants were ordered to close and 5th day of total lockdown. My sometimes light hearted reflections on a short trip to the supermarket.

I went to the supermarket for the 2nd time this week. We only get what we need as per guidelines and hope that this will keep the shelves stacked. The counter balance to this is that if I only went shopping once I would be out less but for twice as long. I can only carry so much. I volunteer, mainly just to get out of the house. I remember a few years ago, ID cards being suggested for the UK and feel somehow fully legitimate because I had my bag for life clearly on show as Guardia Civil drive past. 

On entering, I quickly noticed that virtually everyone now wears a mask and feel a slight discomfort, almost naked minus my mask as I don my gloves ready to search for a suitable cucumber to place into my basket. I feel self conscious as I struggle to open a plastic bag in order to place said cucumber so I take a glove off and feel guilty for doing so. Then I have to process the price sticker which decided to attach itself like a limpet to the plastic glove I have only just returned to my hand. They never taught me this at school! The strife was relieved when the cucumber was safely inserted into it's location. And relax... 

The supermarket is well stocked but I notice that certain shelves are empty. Baked beans, Heinz soups, corned beef, weetabix... Toilet paper is very low and I got the last pack of teabags but there’s plenty of bread and milk. We have half a bag of teabags at home already and I feel slight guilt when I take the pack, which lasts a millisecond when I remember the videos of shopping trolleys over full to the brim and beyond with toilet paper - my wife has a pretty full on tea habit you see. Hot drinks are advised and she hates coffee, green tea, red bush and any of the other variations available. Hot chocolate would be gratefully accepted but not being able to go out for walks, that ‘second on the lips’ would likely spend its lifetime on our hips, as the saying goes. 

it's all very quiet and relatively normal apart from the occasional customer who avoids me when we are looking to pass in the aisle, must be the absense of the mask, or is it something more sinister? I feel a little paranoid and remember a phrase I was told from an old workmate who wasn’t known for his positivity; “Just because you are paranoid, doesn’t mean someone isn’t out to get you”.

I pack the essentials; wine, beer as we are planning a house crawl tonight, probably starting in our regular haunt, the living room and maybe ending up somewhere good and not the bathroom, which often signals the end of a rough night. It’s not the lockdown at this moment that’s causing an issue, it’s the lack of things to look forward to. The meal out, the nice walk, the trip, but the most important thing in life is your health as without that you have nothing. 

I go to pay and unload my goods onto the conveyor belt. They've put plastic screens up between us and the staff and I feel like I'm visiting someone in prison. Maybe I am, maybe we all are 🤔. I am aware that people have made a living writing books and making films about situations such as this and now I’m playing the real part in it. 

Suddenly, when I begin to contemplate the fresh air, I suddenly feel a sneeze coming on. Of all the things that could possibly go wrong with my short trip, this is something I hadn't planned for. At times like this, the worst thoughts fly through your head. Have they a panic button? Alarm, akin to an air raid siren? Will Guardia Civil be at the end of a panic button? Will my wife get her tea bags? I contort my face and breathe heavily. I quickly use my most effective ’smash glass in an emergency’ tactic, sorry, my 2nd most effective (feigning death didn't seem appropriate in the circumstances). I summoned my deepest self-hypnosis and sent my sneeze across the supermarket and out of the door. As I arrived back in the room, sneeze vanquished, a queue had formed of masked people all standing two metres apart, indicated by the lines, strategically placed at the check out for anyone not sure how to measure such distances. I did the British thing, apologised, muttered ’Tarjeta’, punched in my numbers and exited. As I did so, the bloke across the road sneezed and I smiled to myself and wondered... 

On my way back I reflect. I note the empty roads, bars, restaurants and wondered if any of them would open again😞 

In a short moment of light relief I ponder the fact that for as long as I remember, people have used a strategic cough to hide a fart, nowadays they are farting to hide a cough. 

Back home I sat down and relaxed. Shopping over for this week and await news, any news that's in any way positive. I have my health for now, I'm on lockdown with the person I would most choose in the world to be on lockdown with and I vow to speak to my sons and loved ones soon. I reflect and think it could be worse as my wife walks into the living room and announces its the longest she's ever gone without make up 😮and relax...



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3 Comments


watchmanager said:
28 March 2020 @ 09:01

A good read. All I would add is that everyone wipes down any item when returning back to the house whether it's human, foodpackaging, post etc.
If you haven't already got it then dont bring it in and you should be fine.
I need to practice what i preach though and get the soapy cloth out.Stay safe!
🤧😷👍


LinLee said:
28 March 2020 @ 13:05

I’m reading this in UK, hopefully soon to be living in Spain! You are an excellent writer and truly funny, I was in hysterical laughter, keep the stories coming please 😂🤣


Charlietwice said:
28 March 2020 @ 14:41

Thank you for the comments, very much appreciated. Wipe down is done as this ’thing’ lives on... Keep safe and keep smiling 😀


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