It's Day Six in Lock Down and there was some rather urgent sewing to do, I needed to make a couple of masks. Thanks to Dot for providing the pattern, no physical contact, it was safely left in our letter box for me to collect. Did I have any elastic, I wondered? It’s not something I use a lot these days. This elastic must be rather vintage, it cost the grand total of 95 cents back in the day!
These masks should have been an easy make, after all, Dot whipped then up in no time at all, she told me. But I made a boo-boo, and had to do some unpicking. All because I didn’t read the instructions correctly (the story of my life it seems) and had the elastic on the inside when I stitched the two pieces together. After my years of sewing, I should really know better, shouldn’t I? The white one is for Robin, and of course, I just had to make a blue one for myself.
My first masks
These masks are necessary, I decided, after our visit to the supermarket the previous day. In line with the medical view that over 70s should not be going out to get their groceries during the lockdown, we investigated on-line shopping and delivery. Not easy at all. First, we had to register, then spent quite some time checking the website for the products we needed. Then came the frustration, with our order ready, we had to pick a “slot” (day and time) for either pick-up or delivery. But there were no slots available, and seemingly no way of leaving the order ready on-line for the next available slot. All this took a couple of hours, and Robin rang through to the office and told the person on the other end of the phone about our predicament. How could we stay home as advised and get our groceries delivered. The answer was, “Come down now, the queue is not too long”. So that’s what we did, donning a couple of old face masks which Robin found kicking around somewhere.
The line outside the shop was orderly, all standing well apart, and the one at the front of the queue was handed a trolley and allowed in the door each time someone exited with their trolley of groceries. After 15 minutes of waiting, it was finally our turn – although shoppers are meant to go on their own, he allowed both of us in together. Perhaps we looked rather old and doddery? With a list in hand, we quickly got what we wanted. But then we had to wait in an even longer queue snaking around the store till we finally reached the checkout. Goodness knows how the really elderly cope with all this standing and waiting.
The checkouts were quite different since our last visit. Perspex screens for safety, and the items were scanned and placed into another trolley behind the operator, who then wheeled it around, for us to collect. Payment was made by credit card, no cash allowed, and although I didn't witness it, I presume that the terminal would be wiped down between customers. We had to pack our own groceries into bags, which we did at the car. Walking around the shop we never witnessed anyone coughing, sneezing or spluttering, so that was good. Still couldn't buy any flour though, although there seemed to be plenty of TP in stock. And as a treat, a packet or two of Easter Eggs jumped into our trolley, we needed them after all that stress!
Although all us oldies were standing patiently in line with plenty of room between is as we wait for our turn at the checkout, one young woman decided to jump the queue and walked to the front. How dare she, we muttered amongst ourselves,and she was told to go and take her place at the end of the queue. But no, she just hung around for a while, finally walking up to the next available checkout and unloading her trolley. The manager came rushing up, telling her to put her things back into her trolley and get to the end of the line, as she had already been told! Swearing at the manager, she flounced out of the store, leaving someone else, of course, to put all her items back on the shelves.
After all that excitement, we were pleased to get home, put everything away, sit down with a hot drink and put our feet up. Next time we venture out we will have our new masks to wear. I know we have been told they aren’t as good as “real” ones, but surely they will be better than nothing. We will give on-line shopping another try in the near future, hopefully it will be more successful next time we try.