At last a long-overdue visit to the barbers and my first, and certainly not my last, experience of wearing a face mask. My local barbershop, the excellent Cuttin Crew in Stoke Gifford (07397 557742 for an appointment), appears to be the model of socially distant hairdressing. Spotlessly clean – to be fair, that was always the case with these guys – temperature checks and compulsory mask wearing. I feel so much better now my Worzel Gummidge look has gone but it was the mask wearing I didn’t particularly enjoy.
We know that face masks are of little use to the wearer. In the case of the barber shop, they could provide some level of protection to the barber and fellow customers. I’m very happy to do my bit, especially given some customers are even older than me, hard to believe though that is.
I didn’t enjoy the experience. Perhaps I shall get used to it – actually, I’ll have to given that COVID-19 will be with us for many years, possibly forever – but my initial feeling was of minor levels of claustrophobia and a constant mind distraction. I rather liked the fact I didn’t have to look at my face in the mirror – always a pet hate for me – but it didn’t feel right. I kept thinking the mask would slide off my nose and mouth – it didn’t – and I was worried I might have a minor asthma attack – again, I didn’t. The very first thing I did leaving the shop was remove the bloody thing!
Needs must, however, and we all have to put up with some inconvenience if we are to avoid killing my fellow man and woman, something Dominic Cummings and Boris Johnson have singularly failed to do since the virus arrived.
Tomorrow, I am going on my first rail trip since March and on Wednesday I am going to a farm shop café for breakfast, so life, at long last, is beginning to resemble some kind of normal. However, as we know from the feeble ‘clap for carers’ last night, which failed to grab the national attention as the Thursday night events used to do, many people think the virus has gone away. I guess my coming wider travels reflect my own increasing confidence that things are much safer now when in fact they aren’t.
I’m supposed to be going to Spain in September and it’s absolutely certain that restrictions will certainly still be in place and that mask-wearing may well be compulsory everywhere. If I didn’t enjoy wearing a mask to the barber’s, I won’t enjoy it on a bloody aeroplane, that’s for sure.