I first posted the following senyrū on 25th January, 2020.
Aircraft travel fast
Take us far off, bring us home
With our souvenirs
n.b.A research report published today has provided clear evidence that the reason Covid-19 coronavirus spread so quickly from China and its neighbours to become a global pandemic was due to the unfettered movement of international airline passengers.
Today, in the UK, where the total of Covid-19 attributed deaths of people is now over 110,250, quarantine arrangements for arriving airline passengers have at last been finalised. It is 4th February, 2021 – more than a year after the first person in England died from the coronavirus. That was on 20th January, 2020. Inbound travellers from 33 “Red List” destinations will have to go through hotel-based quarantine starting from 15th February.
The report from Aberdeen University is not a great surprise to anyone with an understanding of how interconnected the world is, but it may come as a surprise to the Great Clown and his merry band in Downing Street.
Chilly sunbeams caught the trees with such intensity that the bark shone. In Chapelfield Gardens this mighty specimen’s complex skeleton is revealed.
Although the temperature was barely above freezing, the first crocuses were pushing though to join dangling snow drops and daffodil shoots. What will trigger the opening of the daffodils? Will it be warmth or light that they respond to? There has been the rain to ensure the earth is soft and will separate at their insistence. We wait for the fanfare of silent yellow trumpets to confirm our progress.
Magnolia buds, sticky to touch are fattening, their pinched tips speared with pink.
All the trees are beginning to show some suggestion of colour now as leaves start to form. The townhouses have just a few more weeks to enjoy unscreened sunsets.
There is little traffic today, except that squeezed into the hours at the start and end of the commercial day. I head out to complete a couple of minor errands. The biggest danger is pedestrians stepping into the street without looking for cyclists as they considerately make space for each other.
When I cut through the perimeter of Eaton Park I notice the car park is full and the footpaths busy. In the line of trees running by Southside Avenue starlings are agitating to fly before the onset of evening. Their squabbling is a terrific noise.
I note that infection rates and related deaths are beginning to fall across the United Kingdom. We must hold our discipline and see this through. On the Isle of Man, once a stronghold for Vikings between Ireland and Britain, the pubs are open and a normal life has resumed as there are no known cases in its population of 82,000.
The other local difficulty has taken a worrying turn as Loyalist extremists in Northern Ireland have begun a campaign of intimidation against the local government workers who have the job of processing paperwork on goods moving between the six counties and Britain as a result of Johnson’s farcical Brexit deal.