I’ve just been meandering through the photo-archives, trying to find out when was my last totally pre-Covid walkabout. Not even any vaguely threatening headlines, just life as we knew it before … it. And it would appear that the last time I was able thus to indulge was on February 5th. I went looking for just one fun photo that would celebrate this bygone age, and it was no contest:
Nothing says definitely-before-You-Know-What like an advert for a Plague-based entertainment, for tourists, on a bus, on Westminster Bridge. And not a face mask in sight. Any more than there were face masks in any other of my photos that day. (The above graphic still survives at the London Dungeon Website.)
The next time I ventured out was on the 24th of that month, to Middlesex University, to hear a talk given by Steve Davies. And I distinctly recall how mention was made of how the fear of You Know What had definitely slimmed down the size of the audience. Maybe it had, maybe it hadn’t. Maybe it was just a slim audience. But my point is, we were already talking about it by then.
Oddly enough, I’m damn near certain that at an earlier talk I heard Davies give, at the IEA, well before the Plague struck, Davies was asked in the Q&A about what the next chunk of history might consist of, and he included in his reply a reference to possible plagues. We’re due one, he said. That’s how I remember it anyway.