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Humour as an Antidote

game

WILL THIS GO VIRAL?

You all know what it is. The elephant in the room that can no longer be ignored. The coronavirus is a very serious pandemic, and frightening. People are dying all over the world. Families are suffering. Businesses are closed. The world has shut shop. I would like to thank all the amazing and brave people in the medical world who are caring for the afflicted.

When all of this is over and we pray it’s soon, they deserve the MBE’s and the OBE’s and all the honours going. Without them I suspect the mortality rate of this virus would be higher. You all know the symptoms and how to avoid it, hopefully, so I won’t talk about any of that. I’ll just have a quick chat with all and tell you about the Irish experience. Humour is not an antidote, but it sure helps.

BEFORE YOU READ THIS BLOG

I would appreciate if you could wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Computer viruses are rampant, and rumour has it that the Coronavirus is no stranger to online activity, especially WhatsApp. Give a shout when you’re ready and I’ll continue.

WELCOME BACK

Fair play to you, as we say here in Ireland, you did a grand job with washing your hands. Note to self: Must tell my 18-month-old grandson that shoving his hands down the toilet and flushing it not ideal.

STOCKPILING

loopaper

Have any of you seen the footage online of people losing their wits, if they had any to begin with, and panic buying food and household items. Toilet paper seems to be top of the list which is quite strange as I’ve never had any dish cooked with it. On second thoughts, maybe the last lasagne Richard made, but that was only because we had no lasagne sheets in the cupboard or “press” as we Irish say. He layered the mixture with loo paper. I wouldn’t mind but it was 4 ply!

PUBLIC TRANSPORT

We travel from our wee village to the city centre by bus. The front seats are now closed off with yellow tape, a bit like a crime scene. I assume it’s to give the driver the required social distance of 3 foot or more from us plebs. Or is that metres?

TODAY’S SHOPPING EXPERIENCE

It was 5 minutes before I could enter the store, my shopping list grasped tightly in my grubby paw. Only five of us waiting, but they weren’t letting us pass without a few “words of advice.” Top of the list was to inform us that from Monday onwards anyone over 65 would have an allocated shopping time from 7am and 9am. It was to give us more time, she stated, her gimlet eyes staring at me.

Now I want to know who is responsible for telling them that I’m a ditherer when it comes to shopping. I spend ages reading labels or trying to. Note to self: Buy a magnifying glass. The store was so empty, in more ways than one, that my shopping was soon done. However, my shopping basket did not overfloweth, or even runneth over.

TROUNCED

banana loaf

Don’t you just love that word! You can say it with such relish. Talking about relishes there wasn’t a pickle in sight, but my greatest gripe was “the panic-stricken selfish shoppers” who cleared the shelves of flour. Richard wanted to make a banana cake, but No Siree! That’s not going to happen any time soon.

The Abrahams household shall be bereft of Richard’s banana cake. We checked a few other shops. The story was the same. No flour! I’m not a nasty person (usually), but anyone who bought gluten laden flour I’d encourage you to make a few scones and gorgeous bread and sponge cakes.

Go mad Go on, go for it! Treat yourself! Have your own personal afternoon tea party at home. Oh, didn’t you know you were gluten intolerant? Shame, but look on the bright side, you have plenty of loo paper to deal with the aftermath. And for those of you who aren’t gluten intolerant spread some joy around your neighbourhood and share the cakes and scones, otherwise a few weevils will be setting up home in your many many many bags of flour and any other dried goods you have stockpiled.

“MY CUP RUNNETH OVER”

This quote from the Hebrew Bible, Psalm 23.5 means: I HAVE MORE THAN ENOUGH FOR MY NEEDS. CAN ALL YOU STOCKPILING YOKELS. HEAR THAT?

WAITING TO PAY

cashier

“Stand behind the red tape on the floor.”

Okay, but my arms are so short it’s difficult for me to place the items I’ve bought onto the yoke. (Another Irish word when you don’t know what something is called). Then I copped on. The cashier was wearing a protective helmet and holding a large net. I was never any good at basketball and much as I loved football I always ran past the ball.

Though I will say in my defence I did score a goal once. Anyway, my spirit was willing even if my muscles were weak. (Gym been closed is my excuse). I picked up a tin of baked beans, shop brand as opposed to designer Heinz.

Missed the net. Chickpeas next. Score! Yeah! I was really in my stride now. Sugar. Splat! Evaporated and condensed milk, which Richard says are South African delicacies, flew through the air, an amazing trajectory, calculus in motion!

Oops. Something is not quite right here, and I don’t mean my maths.

“YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT”

Richard has been saying that for 40 years, but he never wore a uniform, so I’ve just ignored him. It appears that I wasn’t supposed to throw the groceries at the cashier and the net in her hand was to measure the net profit of goods sold. (It’s that voice in my head again making me say daft things.)

The helmet was actually her hair piled up on her head and covered with a hairnet. This net was real, not a figment of my imagination. My enthusiasm for doing what I thought was the right thing was totally misplaced as indeed were my spectacles. Combined with deafness I never heard the cashier’s screams. That was my defence in court. Accused of assault and it wasn’t the Himalayan one, I’m now confined to home and ordered to serve breakfast to my husband in bed every day for a year.

HUGGING ILL-ADVISED

The preferred form of greeting is now touching elbows and I sincerely hope you haven’t sneezed into yours before greeting me! If you’re nimble footed you can go toe to toe. I see new dances being performed here. Mary Kirsten, aficionado of classical ballroom dancing, has a dancing school in Nottingham, UK. Looking forward to some new moves when your team are next in Blackpool.

NINE MONTHS FROM NOW

The birth rate is expected to rise. Please do not stockpile nappies! And hands off the baby milk formula. It’s not meant for your tea. The lady I saw today with a trolley full of sanitary pads and I’m not joking, is obviously not planning this 9 month surprise. What next?

FINAL WORDS

Be safe. Be mindful. Be kind. We’re all in the same boat. Let’s not rock it. Let’s row together with love and keep our spirits high.

What to know about social distancing strategies amid coronavirus outbreak – Watch the video below!

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Helena

My name is Helena Abrahams and I’m from the West of Ireland, where we currently live. I’ve been married to Richard for almost 40 years and. (Bravery award pending). We have 3 beautiful adult children, 2 sons and a daughter. They are the treasures in my kingdom.

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