Day 55 – Places to go

Since we’re still not allowed out (much), I’ve had a quick scoot around some places you can go on the internet.

First off, I watched the Headstock stream marking the 40th anniversary of the death of Ian Curtis (I mentioned it here). UWS have posted the video on Youtube.
I highly recommend it, but if you only have a few minutes, then Kodaline (@1:14:35) and and Elbow (@1:50:26) were particular highlights. Also, some great interviews with Steven Morris and Bernard Sumner. Sadly, there were technical issues with the choir version of Love Will Tear Us Apart as the finale, which was rather disappointing and frustrating.

Next up, remember when I accidentally drove through the Addo National Park?

I knew you would.

SANParks have a live streaming camera set up on one of the waterholes there, so you can live vicariously through their lens.

It is live and wholly unedited, so you might not see anything when you click through, but we spotted warthogs and an elephant there yesterday.

And if the Eastern Cape isn’t your thing, you can find other SANParks cameras here.

Or, go and read this piece on why Cape Town has 10% of the the cases of Covid-19 on the whole African continent. (Can/could any other city claim a similar honour, worldwide?)

They mention tourism and three “super-spreader” events in their analysis, but the tourism thing wouldn’t have resulted in such a late surge of cases (from early May), given that there were no flights into CPT for 6 weeks before the graphs started to look quite so scary. In addition, my contacts at the local NHLS labs say they are only aware of one of the three “hotspots” mentioned in the article, so I’m not sure what’s going on there.

Our kids are meant to be going back to school from the start of June, but the messages are all horribly mixed-up. By that point, the situation in Cape Town will be worse than at any point so far, we will still only be allowed out for 3 hours exercise each morning, and for essential shopping. We won’t be allowed out in open spaces like on beaches or the local National Park. The 8pm-5am curfew will still be in force.

But our kids will be ok to sit next to each other and in front of several teachers for 5 hours each day at school?

How does that even begin to make sense?

If we’re meant to try to avoid contracting the virus – for our own safety and for the good of the healthcare systems – then lock us all down. Don’t sent the kids out to catch it and bring it back into our homes. And yes, I know that stats about kids getting it less and spreading it less. And that’s great. But books, pens, folders, bags etc…
And less isn’t zero. Kids staying at home can’t spread what they don’t have.

But if you should have a health problem that puts you into a high risk category for Covid-19, the Department of Basic Education shares this little gem:

“Parents with chronic conditions are encouraged to not come into close contact with their kids that are attending school.”

Right. Easy and straightforward.

The piecemeal approach that’s currently being vaunted is ridiculous and contradictory. Either lift the lockdown (which clearly isn’t working here at the moment anyway) and send the kids to school, or keep everyone home.

It’s the dichotomy that pisses me off.

And what about teachers who fall into high risk categories?
Eish, don’t get me re-started.

I appeared to have digressed a bit. Sorry.

Right. One more idea: go and do a virtual tour of a famous museum or gallery and learn about some paintings. I wandered around the Eiffel Tower yesterday. Great views. Very quiet.

Gentle Storm

Not Dineo  – the one that’s blowing through the Mozambique Channel right now. It’s not gentle and technically it’s a tropical cyclone, anyway.

Accurate low pressure weather system nomenclature. S’important.

No. I’m talking about the upcoming Elbow single, Gentle Storm:

Wait a second – wasn’t that Benedict Cucumberbeagle? Yes. Yes, I think it was.
This is a kind of updated, faster, more unsettling version of MJ’s Black and White video. It’s a really, really good song as well.

I have yet to post the review of the Little Fictions album, I know. It’s one of those that I just can’t stop listening to. And it’s fitting that on this day of love, I should mention it, since the whole thing is basically all about Guy Garvey falling in love.

But… more of that on a day with fewer hearts and flowers.

Here. Here and good.

I touched upon the new Elbow album when I shared the beautiful opening track Magnificent (She Says) a week or two ago.

Well, yesterday, as promised, it came out and I bought myself a copy.
And my goodness, it’s good. It’s really, really good.

Early days yet, but I have a weekend of walking along the beach to share with Guy and chums, so expect something a bit more considered and a bit less gushy next week.

Magnificent (she says)

Actually, Magnificent (I say). The first track from Elbow’s forthcoming new album has Guy Garvey’s soothing, uncomplicated voice running over a backdrop of dramatic strings and comes packaged with a suitably triumphant video:

It’s my new favourite tune, with thought provoking lyrics reminding us the powerful innocence and promise of childhood:

And there she stands
Throwing both her arms around the world
The world that doesn’t even know
How much it needs this little girl

It’s all gonna be magnificent, she says
It’s all gonna be magnificent…

and brings with it huge anticipation for the new album Little Frictions, due for release in early February.

Gorgeous.