Business365 editor, Simon Richardson – like so many other people on the Island – is working from home. He’s been keeping a daily blog about the experience and reflecting on the strange times we find ourselves in as a result of the Coronavirus epidemic.
After a couple of months working from home I’ve concluded there are significant differences to being in the office – this morning being a good example. I can’t think of a time at work when two fledgling sparrows landed on my open window and started chirping at me.
Well that’s what happened a few minutes ago. The noise made me jump and I rushed to the window to try and prevent them entering the room. One little guy flew off, but his mate was going nowhere and stared me out. Now I know I look a bit hairy at the moment, but I’m confident I don’t look like a male Sparrow. Nevertheless, I reckon this plucky little bird wanted me to feed him. It seems his radar was a bit off beam, as we have tasty fatballs hanging about twelve feet from the spare room window. Anyway, all ended well – he sussed I wasn’t his Dad, and flew off to find his mate.
Well, today is a big day for the Isle of Man. Social distancing restrictions have been lifted and we are pretty much free to behave like human beings again. It’s great news but I guess there will be a lot of people who remain a little nervous about the change, given the serious problems that remain on the adjacent Isle.
Here, within my own little bubble, nothing seems any different. The sun is still shining, as it was nine or so weeks ago, when I started working from home. My other half is outside working on a piece of furniture and the seat I’m using to write this is still as uncomfortable as it was from the outset.
There was an interesting study carried out in the UK last week that revealed Brits have added an average 2.7 pounds during lockdown. The combined 62,261 tons exceeds the weight of the Titanic! If that doesn’t give you that sinking feeling nothing will.
As I have mentioned previously we don’t have a set of scales in our house. My gauge is whether or not the button on my shorts leaves a little red circle, just below my belly button at the end of the day. A couple of weeks ago the little circle was starting to resemble a bullet hole, so I knew all wasn’t well.
Since then I have been trying hard to beat the blubber – with moderate success. The shorts are now comfy again – though there was a minor scare the other day after they were washed. Happily they have now stretched back to their normal setting – panic over.
It seems people north of the border in Scotland have gained the most – adding a mighty 3.8 lbs. Too many deep-fried Mars bars aren’t so good after all.
Further analysis through Find Out Now’s extensive profile data suggests that the biggest weight losses come from those who visited the pub one or more times per week before lockdown. 6.5% of those who visited four times per week or more lost at least a stone!
No doubt there will be many people here on the Island desperate to return to their favourite restaurants now that the restrictions have been lifted. Rest assured they will all have some delicious salads on the menu.
Shopping will be the ‘joy’ it was pre lockdown, without queues and baffling one-way systems. Imagine the intense pleasure of pushing your trolley against the flow to retrieve an item that you missed a couple of aisles earlier.
Elsewhere the obligatory trips to B&Q will no longer involve a day of your life. Having entered the store you will be able to pick up what you want head for the tills, then out. The last couple of visits have made me realise what it must be like to be a lorry driver backed up on the road outside Dover when the Calais dockers are on strike. Had the restrictions remained in place any longer I’d have started taking emergency rations with me when I needed a packet of screws.
Anyway – well done Isle of Man, enjoy your new found freedoms, you’ve played a blinder.