Corona Update – 17 March 2020

We did a trip to our local supermarket last week, as we normally do each week. My wife takes paracetamol regularly to relieve aches and pains, and really, apart from unbranded paracetamol, we got everything we went in for.

Even the unbranded paracetamol, we saw that there was branded paracetamol still on the shelves, but we will not pay 10x for a branded version of something which is exactly the same.

At the same time, we observed an aisle absolutely full of toilet rolls. This was after the stories of panic-buying of toilet roll first appeared, because we had a conversation on that very subject.

Yesterday, we went out again. Same shop.

The situation was still the same with the paracetamol. There were fewer branded boxes, but still some in stock. Nothing unbranded, but there was plenty of unbranded ibuprofen.

There were plentiful supplies of milk, something which you’d generally think that people need a steady, fresh supply of.

Apples – another fresh thing – no problem.

We generally saw fewer things on the shelves, though. My wife specifically eats gluten-free wherever possible – mostly the shelves were empty but she managed to get some spaghetti. It was in some flash Italian box, she probably paid silly money for it, but it was, at least, in stock. Just general (with-gluten) pasta appeared to be gone. Doesn’t much bother me as I have pasta twice a year in any case. It’s a bugger with my diabetes.

Gone too was dried rice (including these room-temperature microwaveable sachets), although the frozen microwaveable rice with vegetables that we usually buy, no problem.

That aisle of toilet rolls that we saw last week was now completely empty. Although there was plenty of kitchen roll. At a push, I have interchanged.

There were also no eggs. Comments, please. Why on earth are people panic buying eggs? Are we going to became a nation of bakers as a result of this crisis? As it happens we are quite lucky there – we’re out in the country, lots of people keep chickens anyway and sell the eggs – cheaper, fresher and a darned site more tasty! The only thing the supermarket offers is convenience. But, why eggs?

For those of you who are not in the UK, we have now been told to avoid unnecessary contact with each other, including things like working from home wherever possible. When you’re me, pretty much all contact is unnecessary. I expect the next time I leave the house will be next week when I shop.

I usually do my charity work today, but it is certainly not essential that I go to their office. The work I do is telephone calls anyway, which can be made from anywhere, and they have given me both the permission and the means to access their client database. So I will be working as normal, but from the comfort of my sofa. I guess that means more frequent cups of tea, at least!

My wife has just had the week off work. She is a nurse in the local doctor’s surgery. She is still expected to turn up for work, although once inside, the door is locked and nobody allowed in. When somebody comes along to collect their repeat prescription, say, somebody goes out, has a brief conversation, then comes in and sorts the paperwork. They are trying to convey that for anything except Corona, it is almost business as usual. But my wife usually needs to see her diabetic patients personally, to measure their blood pressure, for example, so she’s not sure how she’ll be asked to work. It is not safe to assume that all her clients have computers.

Just thought I’d update you. This is the UK and currently I am very well, but things can change daily at the moment. I’m glad Tom Hanks and his wife have been discharged from hospital – I know he’s a gozillionaire and will have received the best treatment money can buy, but he is still our age group so it’s good to see somebody walk away from this.

Author: Mister Bump UK

Designed/developed large IT systems, interrupted by a stroke in 2016, aged 48. Now mix development of health-related software with voluntary work and writing. Married, with an estranged daughter.

21 thoughts on “Corona Update – 17 March 2020”

  1. we were doing quite well in the no-panic zone until the cheeto (aka the president) made a dithering speech about the virus that contradicted his previous four speeches about not a roll of TP to be found. Eggs are bleated about here as the “perfect” food. high protein, no fat, can be made in may ways…survivalists adore them. They obviously have a stupid gene. Possibly the stupid gene has infected England’s population now as well?

    Liked by 5 people

  2. I went to the store once last week and all fresh goods were gone, ready to be restocked. I know I’m not supposed to panick and I need to unwind but today the ministers and scientist will come together, first the scientists and then the ministers so it can take a while before we get an announcement.
    X amount of people are let in the food stores, you need to wait your turn outside. I haven’t seen a craze for eggs yet. But I did find out that a lot of health insurances don’t cover the Corona virus ’cause it’s relatively new. What a surprise that is!
    I’m afraid that we’ll need to go in lockdown and I’m afraid of this. I need to pack my things and flee to Pierre. It’s difficult to cope with the added stress at this point.
    I’m glad you and your wife are doing ok, I hope she can take as many precautions that she can. Take care the both of you!


    1. I think you are right, it will be better if you are locked down in a house rather than apartment. Despite all the disasters this year, I am sure the insurance companies will post a profit for their shareholders in 2021!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. A fellow fat person i work with freaked out because they couldn’t find any of the frozen crap they usually live on…still working but every other day at my job, went to the market today and found 2 of each of every meat i buy which isnt red. Also found a 3 pk of romaine lettuce. Honestly it seems at least for me, healthier eating is easier to come by than anything processed just gonna treat each day as it comes as normal as possible. i also shop at Giant they offer delivery guess whats in stock, toilet paper. At least I know I can get it if need be.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. And you’re NY, right? We have online ordering here but people have complained that all the delivery slots are booked up. I agree with you about the processed food – no clue about it because that is just not an aisle I go down. I like to cxook stuff up myself just so I’m 100% sure of the ingredients.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. I’m out in the countryside, but probably only 10mi from the nearest city. The city hospital had one death as of about a week ago, but it took about 5 days for news of that death to come out. Eighty deaths so far in UK as a whole.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. Things have just started in SA.
    Government has imposed a travel ban to China, Italy, the UK, US, Germany and France… might be a few others.
    Our roads are quiet. Schools are closed. Pubs, Taverns, Liquor Stores and select restaurants need to close at 6pm. Gatherings of more that 100 people are illegal. People are encouraged to work from home – but I gather about half my friends are still trying to continue their lives as normal.
    The shops pretty much look the same (I only went to a local chain store this morning to stock up as I’m thinking of self isolating with my kids before we get told to – not a grocery store in the mall). The store appeared to have stock of everything except hand wash, hand sanitizer and 2 ply toilet paper – 1 ply still in stock 🤷🏾‍♀️.
    The one item that cannot be bought, even online is hand sanitizer.
    I think everyone in SA is still trying to figure out how to feel.
    To me it feels like the world is upside down, …..first we had rolling blackouts since January, then student protests, now COVID19…. I dunno, I just don’t know how to feel.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah it does feel weird. They are talking ’bout emergency payments here because people are no longer earning! Feels like capitalism is falling apart!
      Supermarkets have tried rationing people but so far the rules they have imposed have been dumb. We started off with everything you say, it has extended to dry food like rice and pasta. Also paracetamol. 24h stores are now closing at night, presumably to restock.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. We normally get a month’s worth of cat food each month, but this month it has been marked “delayed” for weeks, so I ordered some from another online source Tuesday. Arrived yesterday. But only about 2 weeks worth. Despite the shops being low, there was plenty on eBay.

          Liked by 1 person

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