So good evening, folks? How’s your apocalpyse going?
Mine’s going just swell, thanks for asking. I’ve got a handful of symptoms, but doesn’t everyone? I would phone in sick to work and say my plague is flaring up again, but in an uncanny twist work rang in sick to me!
In all seriousness, I hope everyone is as safe as well as possible and managed to avoid the worst aspects of this Pandemic. And I hope you’re doing as you’re told and following all the anti-virus guidelines
Well the world’s gone a bit strange, hasn’t it?
As Understatements of the Year that’s pretty much 1,2, and 3!! It’s been a bit surreal to watch all this develop and play out. From the moment about a fortnight ago when people were told to avoid pubs, till now…a full week into official lockdown. It’s been like something from a TV show, all though it all very real.
I have been locked down for about a week now, though my last visit to work lasted only two hours, consisted of me cleaning beer lines (and having a sneaky pint in the process), before coming home. In that time I’ve been as concerned about the state of my liver as I have covid-19. On that note, I bet the people who invented the other 18 covid plagues are kicking themselves for getting it wrong, for they must have been rubbish pandemics.
But that’s a conspiracy theory for another day…
I was talking about my liver, and its steady degradation. For the lockdown coincided with some unseasonal sunshine over Wales (but isn’t it all, I hear you cry 🙂 ??) and I lived in my suntrap beer garden for a few days, and got through a healthy portion of my lockdown beer supply. So I thought I’d better get brewing to replenish the stock.
The irony is that the beer I decided to brew was a Mexican Cerveza, a bit like corona. So maybe I’ll call it Virus Lager or Covidinita or something. Or maybe its too soon for jokes. Anyway, these were the basic kit ingredients
Just a basic kit and kilo brew, though I did have 500g of spraymalt hanging about so that should boost the flavour. Brewing was nice and simple:
And after a seven day fermentation today was bottling day. The problem with being isolated at home is that I totally forgot what day it was, so I had to clean all my bloody bottles before filling. Its a pain in the arse, kegging is so much easier, but my kegs are all full already so I had to suffer for my craft.
Luckily, my band of choice at the moment, In This Moment, released their latest album last week so I just had that on repeat while this labourious task too place. It was a decent way to spend the evening, and now another forty bottles are conditioning away nicely.
And, if the worst predictions about lockdown prove right, I’ll be drinking them in the early summer sun.
My luck isn’t lost on me, in case any long-term followers are wondering. It was this time last year that I was on the verge of resigning from my job, those greasy wheels were in motion already. I was forcibly reminded of this as I sat in my garden, sun on my face and my laptop in front of me, doing the first creative writing I have in months. It was a similar situation to how I passed last summer, only this time I’m getting paid for it. I could write without guilt, knowing that time I could have spent job-searching wasn’t being lavished on my hobby.
For I have been a furloughed worker for seven days as of tomorrow. I had been approaching my first month back in employment and there was a niggle that I might not be kept on in the harsh trading environment. Luckily my services were retained, I’ve dropped down to 80% pay, but I have an income and a job to go back to. I know a lot are facing greater uncertainty, a situation that I was intimately familiar with for much of last year. It isn’t a nice play to be.
So, all in all, things are as stable as can be expected. I do have bouts of breathlessness, but I’ve had that for about six months, when I had an unexpected change internally. Without being graphic, I thought I developed IBS or Lactose intolerance. I blamed it on unemployment stress, but some reports say these are symptoms of Covid-19, so maybe I caught an early version of it. Who knows, but I’m not going out to risk it.
The positive upshot is that people being at home have taken to reading, and my fanfic stories recently passed the 500’000 reads mark, which cheered me up. Its not a bad number, is it? Half a million? Not everyone can say that.
If only I could think of an original story and do the same. Maybe that’s what I’ll use the lockdown for, turn a negative into a positive. I’ll still be listening to In This Moment as a heavy soundtrack!
And, to end with Maria’s orders, “Stay in and listen to Mother.”
Who am I to argue with that?