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4. An Ode to Covid - Julie Wivell, RCHT

2020 – the year that never was 

2020...what a year! It started off with such good cheer. 
A toast to welcome the year with chorus, another decade now lay before us. 
But if we knew then what we know now, a different demeanour we would endow. 


A virus was found in Wuhan city, so far from us, we just felt pity 
for the people there who had been affected, it won’t come here, we all expected. 

And then the news, it started spreading, across to Europe it was heading. 

But even then I did not fear, still far from me, but I was wrong my dear. 
What was the name of this strange beast, which spread its way from the East.  

Corona Virus was what they said, and now a name that’s in our head. 

We watched with angst just like the rest, as this new virus headed west. 
Italy first with cases rising, we watched the news and not surprising, 
it spread to France and very soon, the UK news was filled with doom. 

By March 13th it was a beast, Europes’ cases had increased 
The numbers now were even more, than China reported just months before. 
The science world was now perplexed, their many brains now were flexed 
To find the answers for a cure, that’s what we needed that’s for sure. 

And so the country rallied round, just like the war the oldies found, 
As a nation we went into ‘lockdown’, but being British we won’t be knocked down.  

Many had to work from home, a concept some had never known 
Schools closed and as a nation, we worried about the education 
of our children, schooled at home, their little minds were free to roam. 
Their fitness sorted by Joe Wicks, with households getting their fitness fix. 


While many people were being furloughed, the NHS altered their workload 
Our way of working had to change, for many of us it was strange, 
Wearing masks to walk around, a practice upon which it was frowned 
but the NHS was reinvented, in times that were unprecedented. 

Government advised us to be wise, Stay Home, Protect the NHS, Save Lives! 
At first it was a bit unclear. What should we wear? What was the gear, 
we had to wear to stay protected, from people who were now infected? 
And very soon, gloves and a mask became the norm for every task, 
And then they added the plastic shield, and with that our fate was sealed. 
Behind the mask we hide our smile, but still we go the extra mile. 
To keep our patients’ safe from harm, and all the while we try stay calm. 

A new craze spread across the Nation, to show us their appreciation, 
Each Thursday night at 8 o’clock, a clap , a cheer or pans to knock, 
To thank key workers for their graft, and keeping supermarkets staffed. 
We ran out of toilet paper, supplies of pasta began to taper, 
But being British we rallied round, and new supplies were quickly found.  


Summer was a quiet time, with people made to toe the line, 
But many tried to hit the beach, the lockdown rules they were to breach.  

Some stayed at home in their bikinis, sipping on their Quarantinis. 

Many people bored of work, turned their skills to do Tik-Tok. 

Sour dough bread, how we would boast, a posh way to have our toast. 

Banana loaf another bake, in our kitchens we would make.  


But then the boredom soon kicked in, cabin fever soon set in.  
And people moaned, when will this end, it's driving us all round the bend. 
We found new ways to stay connected, with friends and families we selected.  

Some were in their little  bubble,  trying to stay out of trouble. 
While others turned to online fun, the new normal had begun. 


Without our families in the room,  we spent time with them on Zoom. 

Family quizzes, we hate defeats, especially when someone cheats, 
All this done to lift the gloom, I wish I’d bought some shares in ZOOM! 

Then lockdown eased, and autumn came, the situation was the same.  

Corona virus hadn’t gone, it was changing tune, a different song. 
Mutations happening all around, while Christmas frost was on the ground.  

Boris cancelled Christmas Cheer, no celebrations for New Year. 

And here we are some 10 months later, Corona Virus, how we hate her!  

Were back in lockdown number 3, and all are thinking “woe is me” 
No escape to winter sun, no skiing or boarding, no such fun. 

And while we move into this year, we have to try and quell the fear. 
A long few months lie ahead, but spring will show her pretty head. 
A vaccine now has been rolled out, there is hope I have no doubt. 

Be patient folks, this time will pass, we’ll soon be out to see the grass, 
And share a picnic with a friend, this rotten time has got to end. 

But in the meantime, we work hard, to keep the services we had 
TIA’s and DVT’s, our workload will never ease, 
Arteries will still be cloggy, venous ulcers will still be soggy.  

And 2020 will come to be, another year in history.