I love a good girls night out! In fact it is the one thing that I schedule in my calendar on a regular basis. Or I did!
It’s not about where we go, or the crowd around us. It is about me, my friends having a laugh and just enjoying time out from family, work, life and just being silly for the night. The cocktails of course help, but the therapy comes five different conversations happening at once, and a real bout of laughter.
I live outside of London, but I’d often plan somewhere fairly central, which is convenient for me as I live within five minutes of a train station that heads straight into Marylebone. Our perfect picks for a meet up often included somewhere busy, fun, lots of cocktail and wine options and either an a la carte menu or sharing platters. The ambiance had to feel relaxed, meaning I want to talk, and laugh out loud, without feeling like we should just shush and respect the ‘quiet’ diners around us!
So the big question…
What do we do now? In the UK we have opened pubs, bars and restaurants… but will it really be the same? Does social distancing, bar staff with face protective visors and protocols on how many can be seated together really make for a relaxed and carefree evening with friends.
The even bigger question…
Are we really that desperate to rush back to the fun and frivolity that we had with the risk to our health and well-being still in question with this virus at large? With no cure available, I still don’t know who has this virus around me, and I’m not willing to risk my own health or the health of friends, family and loved ones for one ‘fun’ night out!
Don’t misunderstand me. I want our economy to survive and I certainly want to support small business, but at the same time, I need to be conscious of our situation and the fragility of it all. One interaction with someone who has the virus, could mean I contract it, or worse I carry it (unknown) and pass it onto someone vulnerable who cannot fight it. It is the impact of one careless moment. One where I don’t follow the rules which could result in the spread of this ‘big germ’ (as my son calls it) and I become just another irritant when we should be focusing on preventing rather than exacerbating the impact of Covid-19.
I want life to go back to normal. I need it to go back. So, to do that I’m not rushing back to what I’d call ‘normal’ right now. I can be patient, and if by being patient it means I miss out on a few bits of fun and frivolities, so be it. My health, and the health of my family, friends, colleagues and my neighbourhood are far more important right now.
However, we have to do this together, and we have to take this seriously. If not, I fear we are in this ‘new normal’ for the long haul. I don’t want that. No one wants that. Short term pain for long term gain.