What’s the effect being two metres is having on us all?

What’s the effect being two metres is having on us all?

Social distancing – the price

There were some interesting posts on the overnight thread which perhaps should be given a wider audience. This from Cyclefree is one of the best and is on the impact of the the metres apart regime that all of us are having to handle.

  • No hugs, no kissing. No intimacy.
  • No quiet conversations or simply being close to someone.
  • No choirs, no theatres, no concerts or gigs, no dancing, no visits to the cinema.
  • No walks with friends, no group or communal activities of any kind.
  • No meals or drinks out, no inviting friends, old and new, round, no parties – whether planned or impromptu, no family gatherings or celebrations.
  • No holding my best friend’s newborn child, no christenings or weddings or even proper funeral services.
  • No religious services – and if you have faith these do provide comfort.
  • No sport, no trips out to museums, galleries, historic or architectural sites.
  • No exploration of this country – or others.
  • No public lectures or talks or debates.
  • No evening classes or learning with others.
  • No chance of meeting someone new.
  • No personal beauty or therapy services.
  • No learning a musical instrument with a teacher present.
  • No more dramas or films being made – not with real life human actors.
  • No getting on a train for a long cross or inter-country journey, staring out the window and wondering who’ll you meet. No getting on a boat sailing somewhere and seeing where it takes you.
  • No possibility of serendipity.

Just confinement in front of a screen. And when we’ve watched every cat video on YouTube what then? Life at a distance mediated by a screen or telephone is not real. It may be your sort of life. It’s not mine and I don’t think it’s my children’s either. If I wanted to live like Sister Wendy Beckett by myself in a caravan in the woods seeing no-one (and even she got out occasionally) or a Hannah Hauxwell on a remote cold Yorkshire farm, I’d have bloody chosen to do so. But I didn’t and don’t and I miss all these things. Above all I miss the possibility of deciding for myself what I want to do. I feel my horizons shrinking but my mind is not. I feel the gap between the possibilities which opened up and which now have closed.

Mike Smithson

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