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Working in the Marie Celeste
Walking into work this morning, I was struck by how many people weren't there. A list on the wall by the clocking in gizmo suggests that of the morning production team, twenty five people came in. Twenty didn't. A similar story for the afternoon. A similar story for other parts, but I think the worst hit are the stock handlers (reception, storage, and expedition), out of a team of ten there are now three.
It doesn't make my job any easier, mind you. Normally I'd do the same thing if there's one person or one hundred. But thanks to the virus I have an additional task - disinfecting door handles, toilets, tables, the kettle, and so on. Takes about forty minutes, and I have to do it three times (morning, noon, afternoon). Doesn't leave so much time for my normal work, so I've been leaving late.
It's a lot quieter now the stressy people are no longer around. Yeah, you know what? I might die of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in three weeks (sadly too late to die on 1st April, my twisted sense of humour would find that amusing). I might be messily decapitated at quarter past five in the afternoon next Thursday on my way home as a result of a toy car meeting a jack-knifed truck. Or I might wake up tomorrow, put the kettle on, and keel over dead from an aneurysm in my brain. I might. I might. I might....
What I'm not going to do is get stressed about it. Che sarà sarà, whatever will be will be...
Went straight home today. I will do some shopping tomorrow. Had a great drive. Brilliant sunshine, empty road, speeding along (ahem, it's faster than a pushbike...) and for the first time I was generally happy enough to sing along (badly, I'm sure) to my selection of eighties songs. I mean, Satellite, Africa, anything by Bonnie Tyler...
When I got home, I called the garage as a formality to confirm the cancellation of my Friday appointment to get the car looked at. That was met with "Why? We're still here!". So Iguess I'll go get the car seen to after all.
He's going to love it when I point out that it's probably a ten minute job to whip on a new piece, but first you gotta move the engine. ☺
I found a forum post that talks about how to do it (with photos). It doesn't look overly difficult, it's just tedious and fiddly. Basically, remove the radiator, remove the front bumper assembly, disconnect the gearbox from the wheels, disconnect the exhaust joint, unbolt it all, jack it (the engine) up and swing it aside (that's why the radiator is removed, to make space). Then do the ten minute swapsydoodle. Then put everything back together. Sheesh...
I guess for the special form I will need to fill in the box for "achete de première nécessitié"? He counts as one of the companies still operating, and there's no other box that makes sense. I might write "réparation voiture" underneath, and add his address. After all, I guess it makes sense, people still need to get their cars fixed, right? Especially if they're still using them (got the form for that!).
What the hell, Britain?
Looking at my news app, I see that Brits, lost for something to do in the lockdown, decided to go walk in the park, the beach, Snowdonia... don't you people understand what a lockdown is?
I'll let you know, Frenchies think you're nuts. And some of them have suggested that the nonchalant "meh" attitude that Brits have towards the virus is not so different to that of their Brexit negotiations, and we all know how well that went.
People are apparently queuing for their final Big Mac before McDonald's closes. It's the workers that I worry about - who's going to cover their loss of income?
Meanwhile Johnson keeps threatening to implement stricter measures. Shut up man and just do it. Take a leaf out of France's book and implement a need-to-go system with harsh punishments for those who dont need.
Oh, and there are rumours that France may be on the way for a nationwide "couvre-feu". That quaint phrase (literally "cover [the] fire") means a curfew. Several cities have already implemented this. A nationwide one would be unprecedented in times of peace, but I think it is sinking into people's heads (except the Brits and Brazillians perhaps) that this entire event is unprecedented. The world is shutting down in a way that the two world wars failed to manage, with lockdowns unheard of, and suddenly "coronavirus" is the most important thing in the world...
Three months ago, it didn't exist.
Take a moment to think about that.
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|David Pilling, 24th March 2020, 13:33|
Yes there is a sense of "I don't want to be on the same team as these dim people, where have they been for the last few weeks". Three weeks ago I walked through the centre of Blackpool and thought it was the last normal day. OTOH the media is all about manipulation, lets hold up these "stupid people" as an example so that the rest of you learn to behave. It's like how the news often ends with a happy story about toddlers learning to wash their hands - they're actually telling us to wash our hands.
'course you're complaining about the Brits being calm (or couldn't care less) and then describing your own what your co-workers will call "sang froid".
Do you save Bonnie Tyler's "Lost in France" for special occasions.
Interesting to learn the meaning of curfew.
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