Lockdown 2020- Muffling Masks & Social Distancing Differences

I've had a busy weekend by lockdown standards. I've been to the optician with my youngest daughter, shopping for replacement household equipment for my uni student daughter and my husband had some time off and keen to make the most of it we braved a couple of large out of town shops to pick up supplies for our ongoing home and garden improvements.

woman and child in masks

We also popped into a supermarket we don't usually visit but was located near the other shops we needed. Throughout the weekend we found that people are interpreting the rules very very differently.

Bear in mind this is the weekend BEFORE so called "barmeggedon" when the pubs, cafes, restaurants and more are due to open and social distancing distancing relaxed a little.

At the optician things were straight out of the movie Contagion. Locked door. Everything gelled and wiped repeatedly. Staff and customers in masks, perplex screens, opticians in extensive PPE and I wasn't allowed to accompany my teen into the examination room. I was however given lots of reassuring information and kept fully abreast of what was happening.

One comedy moment when my daughter tried on glasses which sat nicely on her mask. She looked at me. I looked at her and we both burst out laughing. She was allowed to remove her mask to check the glasses looked good and fit well without the fabric facewear. Well done Specsavers - we felt very safe although it was quite an odd experience especially as we had to repeat ourselves and ask for information to be repeated through muffling masks.

The day was HOT and I was very glad to take the mask off once out of the store. As a family with autistic members we probably could avoid mask wearing for some of the family but luckily everyone seems ok with them.

I visited two branches of the same store and noted they had slightly different approaches to social distancing with one operating a more efficient one way system than the other. Store layout had a lot to do with that though. Plenty of hand-gel and we saw trollies being wiped thoroughly outside. Overall though a less intense experience and I did gel my hands on leaving as I saw lots of people picking things up and putting them down.

The supermarket was a bit of a joke. Unlike our local Tesco where a very rigid and effective one way system operates and a controlled check-out this was a bit of a free for all. There was a nice atmosphere though probably because it felt much more like the old days. I did quite a bit of side stepping and swerving to try and keep 2m away from people although many shoppers didn't seem to care.

I find the new normal of having to wait while someone browses the items you want a little annoying. The queue for the pork pie shelf was amusing - obviously a must-have item on Sunday morning. I must learn to be more patient.

The DIY store where previously rules had been rigidly applied was much more relaxed than our last visit but also much less busy. Another difference from our last visit was the fact that the nearby Mcdonald's was open for breakfast. The queue was minimal so......

Mcdonald's breakfast

Oddly even though I usually love shopping I still have no desire to head to the High Street yet. Im sure as time goes on I will relax a little more but for now I'm content for my husband to pick up most of what we need at the supermarket he works at.