Three weeks, the British authorities said. Just three weeks to stay indoors, keep safe and protect others.
It’s just a teeny-weeny virus, they said. Against our forces, and our willpower, it’s got no chance. We’ll corner it, and once it’s got nowhere to go, it’ll clear off, just disappear – poooffff! Like a bubble, gone in a jiffy!
We weren’t convinced, but we did what we were told: followed all the rules, kept up with the news. Everyday an MP, an NHS rep, a celebrity, a fitness guru and everyday a perfect mother, and all of them, all of the time, telling us, showing us, feeding to us, just exactly what we wanted to know, just exactly what we needed to know and all the time with us knowing, and with them knowing, that in China the people weren’t being told anything about anything worth knowing.
And now, eighteen months later, with the daily briefings having stopped, with any TV transmissions at all having stopped, I realise that there is no we. There is no we and I am no longer listening to the advice, to the rules, to the restrictions, to the lies that are no longer out there, to the all that is no longer out there and no longer coming in to be listened to.
I am going out there. I have to go out there; I ran out of rice and lentils a week ago, and the flour and cooking oil a long time prior. And the chocolate? Did I ever have any bars of chocolate? Why didn’t I think to stock up on cocoa powder? I need to eat, don’t I?
It’s time, but I’m weak from eighteen months of sitting, and from days without food, and my front door won’t be budged. I call for assistance, for the weight of a man, but no-one replies. Then I remember: there is no more we in here than there is a we out there – just an I. Hubby ventured out five months ago, went looking for cheese, for milk, for meat, for eggs, for all that a man , such as a man is, might require. Guess he found what he was looking for. Why share?
Another shove. No movement. Nothing. It’s dark, very dark, in here. Something blocks out the light. Something is here, with me; something with me, but not with me, something on the other side of the door, wedged up against it, pressing in on it. I can feel it wanting – wanting to force its way in, and I can feel my own wanting, my own generosity, my own wanting it to come in.
But I’m no pushover, so I press my right eye against the peephole, the tiny window of glass that allows me to check out the postman, the salesman and the conman – all men, all a threat, and none of them welcome. And it’s then that I see it. They lied. The teeny-weeny virus is massive, as high as my third storey windows, and as wide as it is high, and it’s armoured up with hundreds of foot-long spikes.
They told us that once cornered, with nowhere else to go, the virus, it would vanish – pooofff!
But now that I see it, I see the truth, and I know what the virus wants. And I know that it won’t be going anywhere until it’s got the last of everything that it came here for.
I let it in.
By Jay Cool
Please check out Jay Cool’s Storm Diary 1 – Pathetic?