The last week I went in to the office and had the most “normal” day since March 2020 – we had to clear out of the building for a fire alarm, and there were leaving drinks for someone moving on to somewhere else. The office itself is still not back to its old usage, as only about 20% of us are in on any day it is open. Recruitment during lockdown means it would no longer be possible to give everyone a desk if they all came in on the same day, but we now have new people working from home around the country. One end of the room is still in a Marie Celeste state, with whiteboards filled with details of projects as they were 18 months ago.
On the trains in to and out of London Bridge on Southern routes I would estimate mask wearing at about 40%, on the Underground it is still at least 50%. I had to help someone check the travel requirements for a possible flight to Cyprus next month. It turns that Cyprus is on the Amber List as far as the UK is concerned, and travellers who have been doubly-vaccinated need to just get a form verifying their status for checking in before flying. Cyprus itself has the UK on its Red List.
Meanwhile we travelled to Wales. We stopped along the way and saw this notice by a car park:
In Llandeilo I saw the picture at the top, the first time I have seen an explicit notice about food supply problems.
We went to Camarthen on Saturday. We visited Marks & Spencers and I would say mask wearing was almost 100%. I saw only 2 customers not wearing, and one of them had a badge explaining they were exempt. From my simple, non-systematic observations here and in the Midlands a few weeks ago I would say that mask-wearing is maintaining better in the provinces than in London, which not fit anyone’s simple story about a national divide or what its faultlines might be. But I’m sure there were many, many more articles about it anyway.
In Camarthen I also saw this:
Ministry Of Healing and Steps To Christ are the names on boxes:
Extinction Rebellion signs were also visible here.
Here’s the most notable stories in the latest (Wednesday August 25th 2021) of the South Wales Guardian:
Travelling across the country we see many solar panels and wind turbines.