10 days after I got back from my short break in Moray, it was announced that my part of the country (Fife) would be downgraded from Level 2 to Level 3. The cause was a 40% increase in Covid 19 cases over 7 days.
Moray remains at Level 1, so I cannot go there.
Should I be grateful because I got away when I did, or angry about the restrictions now placed on me as a result of the idiocy of others?
56 people died in Scotland in the 24 hours to 13 November. 96 people were in intensive care. I am grateful not to be among them, if nothing else.
Certainly I managed to enjoy myself while I was away. I was lucky with the weather, with only 1 afternoon blighted by rain. I know the area well, and its climate, so I was hopeful about that when I was booking.
My cottage turned out to be ideal. Lovely inside, and in a very tranquil location.
I had 2 fantastic beach walks, near Burghead and Hopeman. I had another super walk at Dulcie Bridge. I visited a castle which had been on “the list” for years. I had a dinner outside.
In the circumstances I could not have hoped for better.
In what ways did the virus situation impact in the trip?
I was apprehensive about staying somewhere outside my home. The cottage looked super-clean, but the virus is invisible. I did not go around disinfecting surfaces when I arrived, although it is part of the accepted wisdom these days. Anyway, 14 days down the line I am still virus free.
Apprehension also limited my eating out too. Again, part of the advice at the time (within my area) was to limit social contact and potential exposure to the virus. Moray had a much lower prevalence of cases back then as well, but it is not easy to switch in and out of that ‘stay safe’ mindset.
I did use a large supermarket in Elgin several times – something I have not done at home since March. It turned out to be fine in terms of hygiene and social distancing. Not perfect, but not scary either. I did chose what I expected to be quiet times.
My fika at Logie Steading felt very safe. Their hygiene arrangements seemed to be 100% correct, and I saw no signs of idiot customers.
One of my cousins – now in her 70s – lives in the area, and in normal times I might have stopped by her house to say hello. I didn’t. Why take a chance? Why risk causing her anxiety?
Time now to make plans for 25 and 31 December, at home, and probably alone.
@iain taylor, 2020