2020: COVID-19 Has Changed My World: Part 1!

Lockdown has been no joke, receiving the address from the UK government, lockdown was declared. My ambition to return to China hasn't changed, I remain hopeful that international travel will resume soon and that borders will be reopened soon. Clapping for our NHS on Thursday evenings has become our new normal. NHS加油! Corona, I'm done! UK, drop me out! 

The gravity of the situation didn't feel real, other countries batten down the hatches to prevent the spread of the deadly Coronavirus outbreak. Leaving my Sheffield trip to cease and desist, I had to also cancel my Spanish getaway. My weekend trip to Nottingham had been successful, although I did feel something in the air that didn't feel quite right. I remember being at my Grandparents house as the government made the first briefing to the people of the United Kingdom. In disbelief, the terms 'social distancing' and 'stay at home' automatically meant the following months would place us into lockdown. The cards dealt to us were not the ones that we wanted to see, we all knew something drastic needed to be done to combat the spread of the virus within our island nation. With a war time sentiment the people of the United Kingdom knew we had to listen! I know me and my family listened, other folk were acting the fool unlike the vast major of the UK didn't! We have freedoms, don't abuse them because Corona'll get you! 

The daily briefings from the cabinet ministers and health advisors informed the population, the heat was on for the government because we were heading for a potential humanitarian disaster. Questions were asked, some truly were not valid during the earliest stages of our lockdown, all we had to do was stay at home and limit our movement, adopting a China-like lockdown wouldn't have worked in our British society because people just acted the fool by going to the park for a picnic! Boris Johnson surprised the nation by making a taped statement addressing the nation, his tone was sharp and with conviction that demanded the general population heed his words due to the severity of the situation. Our 5pm briefings took over the tea time conversation, when would the virus peak in the United Kingdom? Over the next six weeks, we would see many different faces whilst our Prime Minister faced his very own health battle! Nobody foresaw that the UK PM would contract Coronavirus! So, don't sell off the NHS then! 

Would we starve? Would everywhere close? It took time for people to realise that a Greggs pasty or sausage roll were not essential items! Buying up all the toilet roll wouldn't make this virus disappear any faster! The supermarket became a battle ground, the queues grew longer and the NHS workers were being denied basic items like milk, chicken and toilet roll! A certain level of outrage started to bubble as selfish shoppers panic bought during a pandemic, the NHS heroes were being denied the most basic of items as the shelves laid bare! Shame on your bad selves! Get out! Supermarkets employed extra security guards and prioritised early shopping hours for the elderly and NHS workers. Budget retailers like B&M, Home Bargains, ALDI and Lidl had their tills ringing like its Christmas week, every week! The category is 'social distancing', either queue up or go home! Miss Rona, we won't let you serve UK devastation! If I had my visa sorted and apartment in China I would have followed the rules, staying at home just as their law stated. 

If 2020 could be exchanged, I would demand a full refund with receipts to boot! If this Corona had a manager, I'd been taking this right to the very top! Miss Rona goes by many alias's, this COVID-19 mess saw me arriving back into the United Kingdom from China during mid-February 2020. I did not foresee a second personal lockdown, I had secured my papers and made some serious moves during a shaky time, I was ready! The COVID-19 Ballroom was serving nothing but shade since the clock struck midnight on New Year's Day! Miss Rona was not serving opulence, she is serving 'world devastation' and 'world pandemic' runway realness! As Miss Rona wanted to open up the door further, the world locked down as a collective, we still need to kick that Coronavirus to the curb! Let us 'social distance' for the gods, come on through United Kingdom, stay at home because there's nothing to it! Come on UK, be kind to the 'essential' supermarket staff, we still need to be able to eat! I need a drink! Don't be so stupid!

We needed a light, even though the season was changing, April was still a very dark month during the UK lockdown. Addressing the nation calmly yet firmly, Queen Elizabeth II thanked those who stayed home subtly making a point others weren't going to get any thanks if they were not listening to the 'social distancing' measures. She outlined the unwavering efforts of the NHS frontline workers, with additional gratitude shown to the essential workers. Her direction towards the future held much optimism, she stressed that normal times would return but we as a nation, the United Kingdom needed to pull together. The Queen included thanks to our Commonwealth Nations, recognising that efforts were being made away from the British mainland. Reiterating that 'clapping for our carers' is the right thing to do, paying a secondary serving of thanks to the nation efforts. The speech felt very correct! Yes, Queen Elizabeth II! If people won't listen to the Queen, bring the army on in! Truth be told, the view wouldn't be bad! 

Feeling extremely proud of our Queen, the country needed to pull together even more so, our monarch had spoken! Never in my wildest dreams did I ever envisage being sat at home in England during the first quarter of 2020, I had visited in December 2019 after my seamless week spent in and around New York City, Newark and Philadelphia, USA. The latter part of 2019 flowed effortlessly with my concluding weeks worked at my previous teaching company in Beijing, China the events that would unfold in 2020 would come out of the blue! Little did I know that Miss Rona was plotting her next moves as I enjoyed my problem-free trip, that Miss Rona was about to serve 'COVID-19 Overness!' So yes, the Queen's speech acted as a great leveller, it brought four members of the UK and the Commonwealth Nations together for a few moments during this world pandemic health disaster. As the UK PM had been transferred to ICU, we needed our country to crush that Coronavirus trick! Stay home, be kind, use sense! 

Clap for the NHS? Each Thursday evening it would be that the people of the United Kingdom stood on their doorsteps to 'clap for our carers'. People made noise with clanging pots and pans, waved flags of the union to give thanks to the tireless efforts of the NHS professional medical workforce. On my street the effort could be a lot more, it's been great to see those like us have clapped each week! Choices! It was one of the UK's main concerns that the NHS wouldn't survive during the height of the Coronavirus peak, our NHS angels have worked hard and then some! Clapping is a good way to show our thanks, government needs to give them a pay-rise, quick time! Florence Nightingale made her posthumous comeback! Named after the field hospitals that have been opened across the UK, the NHS Nightingale Hospitals stand ready to deal with our unpredictable pandemic situation. Come on through, Mary Seacole! Why couldn't the hospitals be named after them both? Flo, we talk about you enough! Black Lives do Matter! 

Mary Seacole needed her name on a hospital or ten! NHS, we needed to recognise Mary Seacole as the British-Jamaican medical heroine with her 'British Hotel' during the Crimean War! Check your Black history! When will normal service resume? The month of May arrived with some much needed news, the hospital cases have reduced nicely. Hospitals have gained extra control over their wards, as the need for ventilators and ICU beds lessens, is it time to help Miss Rona to pack her things? Yes! She can cease and desist with immediate effect, her lease of terror has been served! I have faith that I will return to China soon, both South Korea and Singapore are slated to reopen international flights to the Chinese Mainland in the next few weeks. The UK and China have retained an amicable relationship with British Airways and Virgin Atlantic both operating PPE cargo only flights from London Heathrow Airport to Shanghai's Pudong International Airport. UK, will we get through this? Can I see a case of 'stupid' on the horizon?

Miss Rona, NO!

Joseph Harrison 


  1. Brilliant post. The whole world has changed in just a few months.

    I don’t think our brains have quite caught up with the enormity of what is going on yet.

    Claire x

    1. Thank you so much!

      Thank you for taking the time out to read my blog and I’m so happy that you enjoyed reading it!

      Shit is bananas right now, there’s no polite way to say it, I’ll make no apologises!

      Joseph x

  2. So well written! I almost forgot that grocery stores became battlegrounds and people clapped for hospital and frontline workers on a weekly basis🤔 So much has happened👀 This post is one for the history books 👌🏽💕

    1. Yes, this year has been a literally shit biscuit!

      It's one for the history books for sure!


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