Not Only But Also


Today was our big coronavirus vaccination day and it really was a fortuitous decision to have winter tyres on my car, although the first 100 metres uphill from our drive is always the worst part of the journey. Indeed crossing Barden Moor before dropping down into Leyburn was even rather pretty, despite gusty winds blowing snow onto the road in front of us.

The vaccination process itself was quick, straight forward and well-organised. We were early but told to go in regardless and there was no queue, unless a slight wait at the door to the room where three of our local doctors were administering the inoculations counts. Indeed the longest part of the process seemed to be the questions asked of us followed by a brief explanation of the whys and wherefores, after which we were asked if we still wanted to proceed. Well it would have taken more than a rehearsed speech to put us off, especially after driving 20 miles to get there.

Mind it was only afterwards we were handed an explanatory leaflet from Astra Zeneca, setting out primarily the potential side effects which appear in line with most vaccines: sore arm etc.. I'm not sure if everyone reads on, but it gets more interesting when you see the list of its contents. Magical potion it hopefully is, but even having read media reports on how it was developed, I hadn't necessarily expected  the kind of ingredients Macbeth's witches might have thrown into their brew: replication-deficient chimpanzee adenovirus vector and genetically modified human embryonic kidney cells? If I start to eat bananas by the dozen, at least I'll now understand why.

I can't recall being given a list of ingredients for any of the other vaccinations I've had over the years, so goodness knows what's gone into that arm of mine in the past. Out of interest, I've just googled a few and it seems the flu vaccine has chicken egg protein whilst the rabies jab has bovine gelatin. Thank goodness I'm not a vegetarian, although I'd much prefer to consume the beef gelatin in a curly wurly by mouth rather than by intramuscular injection, if you get my drift.

Anyway there was a bonus waiting for us, because after all the tales of how the second dose is being postponed, not only were we vaccinated today but we were also given appointments to return for that all important second jab. All we need now is some reliable data on its ability to ward off mutant variants and I'll be out partying the nights away.

Meanwhile and just by way of update to the regression theory advanced in my last blogpost, I braved the sub zero temperature yesterday afternoon to play in the snow. As predicted, it wasn't the right kind of snow; not sticky enough in this instance. However, before I got completely overwhelmed by the wind chill and another blizzard, I did manage to make myself a little friend. Mr E thought he looked miserable and so went outside himself to remedy matters.

I think we all need friends to smile with us at the moment.



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