As you can imagine, living through covid19 is curtailing many of my normal activities away from business.
Music wise I haven’t attended a gig since Wishbone Ash in Zoetermeer in the Netherlands on 2nd February – an unprecedented length of time without the enjoyment of live music. Sadly, this date will also always be remembered as it was the day my mum passed away after a slow debilitating battle with Lewy Body dementia. I miss you mum and just hope that you have rediscovered happiness with dad in some other life.
There are currently few signs of gigs returning to any degree as the viability of opening venues with reduced capacity is extremely difficult. The Wishbone Ash UK tour this autumn has been cancelled and, as an example, the Ashcon event in Leicester would have seen capacity reduced from 400 to 80. A complete non-starter. Sadly many venues may disappear completely during this crisis.
Many of my musician friends have, understandably been struggling finically during this period although some have taken the opportunity to do live “gigs” online and take the unexpected spare time at their disposal to produce new CDs.
I have therefore been busy buying lots of new CDs to both hear some great music but also, to support the artists.
Football wise – Watford had a miserable end to last season and after the restart of matches behind closed doors, failed to do enough to avoid relegation from the Premiership.
Whilst the club will have to cut its cloth significantly in terms of financial viability, I am extremely confident that next season in the Championship will be a successful one and give an opportunity to an exciting crop of younger players under new Head Coach Vladimir Ivic.
It remains to be seen when there is any significant return to live gigs and the football. Undoubtedly, this will be in some form of reduced capacity basis to allow for social distancing. Watford are looking at running a ballot for season ticket holders for match tickets as it is unlikely that there will be sufficient capacity available for some time. Logistical issues such as entry and exits, toilets etc will all have to be factored. In the meantime the season starts on Friday with a game against Middlesbrough and will be watched on TV.
The FD and I were due to be in France during May on a road trip down to Carcassonne and taking in four Wishbone Ash gigs in various locations along the way. This was, of courses, cancelled although we have pencilled in the same trip (minus the gigs) at the end of November – we shall see.
As I write, we should be in the Italian Lakes but took the decision a few months back not to go and will look to rearrange as soon as it looks more viable.
We have organised a long weekend mid-September to Wells in Somerset just to get away from Integra Towers. This follows Sue having self-isolated for a few weeks whilst having some medical treatment that had been postponed from earlier in the year.
During this period we have not been able to see as much of our gorgeous grandchildren as we would have liked and that has also been tough. Five of the six are now back at school and little Taylor has just started nursery.
Obviously, we are not alone in regards the restrictions we are operating under and all of us have had to make “sacrifices” to try and curtail the effects of covid19. We can but hope that a vaccine is discovered and implemented as soon as possible and that a return to “normality” comes sooner rather than later.