Summer Holidays?

Though who I am will of course remain a complete mystery to almost all of you, one thing I’m thinking about that a lot also are, is if, and if so, where and when we’ll be taking our holiday or holidays this year.

The idea of relaxing in a peaceful hotel is one to which I have warmed very much over the last few years, but especially in the wake of the pandemic and the governments’ responses, and of pursuing an environment which will not cause undue or excessive stress to me or any one else and which realises that many of the so-called ‘guidelines’ and ‘laws’ imposed in the name of the Coronavirus Act 2020 or otherwise are simply harmful and must be avoided.

Being an individual with high-functioning autism, I seek and thrive best with certainty. Knowing what stances the place is going to take on hot-button issues where the mental health of a lot of people is in question, and the stakes of collateral damage to physical health are high, such as ‘face masks’ and ‘vaccine passports’, is of top priority to me because I want to give my custom to people who understand what is happening now is not right, and who are doing everything they can to provide a pleasant respite. It’s very much the same game as seeking for free-range eggs, or feeling reassured in the knowledge of a statement against modern slavery.

While I appreciate the clear statements against the mask insanity from a small but slowly increasing number of businesses, not least from the Nightingale Hotel, there’s something that everyone deserves be it a proponent or strong sceptic against muzzle policy, that is kindness. The people that wear coverings may want to reconsider their decision to do so, yes, however we won’t win them to our side of the debate by insulting them or making them feel bad that they are. I am in fact worried for the staff and customers themselves who are limiting their scope for fresh oxygen and may be feeling ill from having something right over their nose and mouth for any length of time. Let’s turn decisively away fear and hysteria, and encourage businesses and schools with our heads, hearts and souls to make it clear they don’t agree to masks or proof of vaccination, but also not to upset or alienate individuals of a nervous disposition pertaining to the virus who could be our friends of tomorrow, fighting for the very same cause we do.

Where we go one, we go all; we are a community. We are of all ages, male and female; we come from all nationalities and backgrounds and even speak every language, and we suffer all kinds of disabilities and health problems (or not), to which in some cases we were born and in others we were acquainted with varying lengths of time after. Sad though we may feel to turn down businesses who take an unwarranted and aggressive stance to supposedly ‘curb’ coronavirus, the measures they impose have no place in a liberal democracy. If the public wants to have a relaxed and human-rights-supporting experience when they shop or do business or go to school or work, and businesses and other venues supply to that demand, the darkness will soon become obsolete.

Say no to masks when you buy that scrumptious cake from the local bakery, no to vaccine certificates when you come to see your favourite singer belt out the lead single of his or her latest album, and no to irrational testing regimes when you pay a visit to a family member or friend from another land, and you can say yes when asked in ten years’ time if you did all you could to keep the damaging protocols at bay. For it is better to enter Heaven with one eye than it is to enter Hell with two eyes. And when the devil took Jesus to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendour, Jesus said to him, ‘Away from me, Satan! For it is written, “Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.”‘ Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.

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