John Davies is a senior corporate partner at leading commercial law firm Thrings. As a TBE columnist, John regularly addresses a topical news or business-related issue. This time he asks, have you forgotten what day it is yet?
Hello folks. Unsurprisingly I’m writing this month’s ‘Is It Me?’ from my home office – and the first thing I want to say is I hope you, your friends and your loved ones are all safe and well, and your businesses are getting through this.
Such strange times…
Now I could take this opportunity to moan about idiots. You know who I’m talking about: the ones who have been congregating in the parks and on the beaches; the ones jumping off cliffs into the sea, putting our emergency services in danger; the ones holding parties with DJs in tow.
But I won’t.
I’d rather reflect on some of the better things to have come out of this situation. There are the wonderful stories about heroes like Captain Tom which have quite rightly caught the imagination and earned the respect of people not only in the UK but those from far further afield. I’m sure we all have our own stories, our local heroes. Friends of mine have become volunteers: delivering medicine, picking up and distributing shopping to the vulnerable, and talking to people who are alone.
It’s fair to say we now appreciate our NHS and healthcare professionals more than ever. The same goes for those key workers – the emergency services, teachers, drivers, delivery people, shop workers – the list goes on. The odd idiot aside there is also a good deal of courtesy and politeness when you’re out and about taking that much-needed bit of exercise. And I really think we’re talking to each other more (from a safe distance, of course).
Some of us have even taken the opportunity to learn a new trick or two – or in my case revisited a trick or two from the past. I’ve dusted off my skateboards (and before you ask no, they’re not reinforced or made out of titanium), and discovered I’m as gnarly as ever. As a family we’ve been out on our bikes, walking the pooch and even got a badminton net up in the garden. All good fun. And talking of the garden, it’s in pretty good shape, which is nice.
The downsides? Well, I’m forced to admit that I occasionally lose track of what day it is. I’m also missing friends and loved ones. The funny clips on TikTok have dried up. I’ve run out of sherry. I want to see my colleagues and my clients – Zoom and Microsoft Teams are fantastic, but there’s nothing quite like a proper chat in person. Home-schooling. Did I mention home-schooling?
As the lockdown begins to ease I hope the idiots remain in the minority and that as a country we’re sensible. There are so many businesses itching to get going again and with the right approach and a bit of common sense I’m confident we can do it safely.
In the meantime, thanks again to all those people looking after us and keeping us going.