Squaring the circle

A friend of mine invited us for a caravanning trip that we normally plan several months in advance for, for next week (it was a bargain). I had to tell her it just was too much for my brain to take in and we would be declining her kind offer.

I felt the same when I read about how the cost of travel insurance is going up, as now that when British people are travelling to the Continent, we’re no longer in the EU and so will need extra medical coverage. And when I see the US coronavirus numbers keep soaring (one of my siblings lives in Florida and has been taking proper precautions forever, while trying to avoid those who aren’t – they cycle a lot), despite months of dealing with this. No visits back to the homeland anytime soon for us. The result is that we’re staying home in London this summer.

Which might be the best place for us as we all struggle to put ourselves back into the world after the very big event, while still remaining safe. My big outing these days is either to the docks for open water swimming, or to the local lido, which just opened up. And we’re all getting haircuts. It feels like a scary adventure now, rather than a chore.

It seems I am not alone in feeling like this, as the EDA Dairy Flash reports that national measures by EU countries have been increasing during the pandemic, including “name and blame” websites for dairy imports in Poland, and the Bulgarian law obliging the retail sector to source 90% of all dairy products at national level. Not to mention the French call for food patriotism and milk origin labelling decree.

On the face of it, very noble ideas, but not exactly tying in with the EU single market principle, as one European Parliament Member pointed out recently. Then again, what do you do with your national dairy industry, when a large chunk of its revenue disappears overnight because of the shutdown in catering, restaurants, hospitality and aviation? How do you keep farmers and processors in business and still provide products for people to eat using a completely domestic market?

These are a just a few of the things people are dealing with, while trying to square the circle that is the post-pandemic world. And unfortunately, I have no answers for this one. Have a good week.

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