Without Covid, what would people talk or write about?

Because it seems to me that I’ve heard nothing else for the last 9 months. Yes, it’s clearly dreadful; and yes, it represents an unprecedented threat to our lives, to our ‘normal’; and yes, we all need to be mindful, aware, considerate etc. Indeed, in the early days when lockdown was a novelty, I doubt people have ever been more considerate to each other, certainly in the UK.

Having it as the first item on the news for the last 180 days is one thing, but it now seems the virus is crippling us mentally as well as physically.

Two days ago I was in a queue unable not to overhear someone sounding off about ‘the situation’, how it was impacting him, how this was wrong or that was wrong. As if any of what he said made any difference. There are probably millions of such conversations every hour around the world. Is it me, or is there too much moaning, selfishness, ignorance, self-righteous pontificating?

And now I’m at it too, sharing my own view with the world..!!

At least it’s the first – and hopefully only! – thing I’ll have written about it, unlike the cottage industry that seems to have sprung up with writers searching for that definitive pandemic work. Perhaps it’s only natural, a way of dealing with it, or understanding it.

Can I do anything about Covid? No. Can I do anything about the economy, share prices, or whether restaurants open, or if there are crowds at sporting events? No. Can I try and manage my relationship to it as best I can to protect myself and my family – and the wider ‘family’ too? Yes. And surely this should be our shared priority.

But do I also have a responsibility to myself to come to terms with it, to redraw parameters, to rescope ambition, to redefine goals, to try and find – amidst the colossal mess – some semblance of light at the tunnel’s end?

I think so. I also think it won’t be easy. But it’s surely essential to try, given we have no idea how long the tunnel actually is…