Yesterday, whilst out walking, Doris my dog and I passed the Whitby Covid-19 vaccination centre, based in the old Pavilion on the cliffside. One of thousands of such sites across the land. For a while we watched the steady stream of white-haired septua- and octogenarians come and go. All was calm. All was polite. Smiles and walking sticks were everywhere. The orderly elderly. It was all so – um, well – British.
We’re renowned as a race for our ability to queue. It struck me that we’re all now in the biggest queue ever, some 66m people long. And of course, we’re following the rules – trust the system, wait your turn; turn up when it’s your time; don’t jump the queue; go home afterwards and stay there till the others have had their turns too.
I found it all surprisingly moving. This vaccination programme is impressive beyond words. The tear in my eye I could attribute to the icy wind off the North Sea, but the lump in my throat was more difficult to explain.
All of us will get our jabs soon enough. The end of the beginning is in sight. We can all now look forward to a reborn albeit still careful summer when we can once again be with our precious families and friends. But let us not forget those whom we’ve lost.
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Thank you for reading my blogs. I’m getting quite old now, and hopefully I’m a little wiser than I once was. I have enjoyed a fascinating career full of fascinating people, and made many great friendships. I’ve made huge errors in my lifetime, and enjoyed great success too – it’s been the ultimate game of snakes and ladders - up and down, round and round. It is my privilege to share some of my stories with you, and describe some of the lessons I’ve learned in the hope that it may both save you from falling into the same holes, and help you in your careers and lives. Good luck and good fortune.