It’s one of those slightly surreal afternoons that Covid excels at.

First, a chemist’s at the grittier end of High Street, where one set of people is getting jabbed while another has their liquid methadone – live-saving stuff dusted with pleasantries:

‘Awright today, Steve?’
‘Could be worse, thanks, Bev.’

‘Just a small scratch…’
‘Well, that wasn’t so bad’.

Freshly boosted, she goes for a wander. She quite fancies a Bratwurst, but it’s too full for comfort. She’s damn well going to M&S for a little browse, though.

As she wrestles with her face mask at the entrance, a thirty-something-year-old bloke sidles up and says: “We still wearing a mask, then?”

His expression: smug righteousness. A confrontational gleam in the eye.

For a split second, she comes very close to decking him, then she turns and leaves him standing.

She has thermals to buy.

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