Andy Richardson: There are still reasons to be cheerful
It looked like a drug deal. A furtive couple parked in a quiet village then killed the engine of their Ford Mondeo. They glanced this way and that, waiting at the rendezvous for their date.
The woman in the passenger seat looked particularly nervous. What if the police drove past? They didn’t have an essential worker letter from their employer. Would they face a £30 spot fine?
Their dealer arrived five minutes late and both drivers jumped out of their cars. They lifted their boots and the transaction took place. From a distance, we watched a crate being gently lifted from the dealers’ car. It was placed into the Mondeo’s boot. Was it cannabis or cocaine? Was it a dodgy games console or contraband hand sanitiser? No. It was leeks. Freshly dug that afternoon and ready for the pot. The driver’s shoulder bumped before driving away. Leek dealers, eh. They’ll go to any lengths to sell their veg.
While leek are now traded at lay-bys, office workers are getting to grips with video conferencing. On a recent three-way exchange, workers attempted Facetime. They failed. When Worker A spoke to Worker B, Worker C was cut off. When Worker C spoke to Worker B, Worker A became mute. Workers B and C got an unexpected window into Worker A’s world when he stood and tugged a cable. From the waist down, he was wearing a pair of Disney pyjamas and fluffy pink slippers. A nice look, for a man who was wearing a shirt and tie from the waist up. His child intervened and showed her dad which buttons to press. Thank God for home schooling – though it’s the kids who are teaching the adults rather than the other way around.
Around the world, the light is breaking through. A 101-year-old man has recovered from Covid-19 in Italy. He had previously survived the 1918 flu and a World War. His is one of many tales of derring do.
Personal hygiene is key, of course, though my car is beginning to look like the inside of an NHS bin. Every essential journey begins with an anti-bac wipe of the hands and steering wheel. Every journey ends the same way. A pile of dried tissues are a reminder of the strange times in which we live.
Still there are reasons to be cheerful and opportunities abound. I hear there’s a very good leek dealer doing the rounds. If anybody needs his number, drop me a line.