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19 July changes - scared

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Sunny Clouds:
I think a lot of people have been missing communal singing, whether in places of worship or elsewhere.  Horrid for those for whom that's important.

I hold a view with masks that wouldn't be popular, especially with Boris & mates, that we should, within three months of the start of the pandemic, have had established a mask-exemption scheme.  But as we all here know, they can't even run a proper disability assessment system, or at least not one that works for claimants or the UK's budget, as opposed to get-rich companies, so they'd just farm that out and mess it up as well.

I believe that only a small proportion of people not wearing masks are genuinely exempt, and I want to scream at people that don't wear masks so I force myself to avoid even looking grumpy because there are people who have genuine reasons and I can't tell which people do or don't.  I

I think also that an awful lot of fear has been stoked up online about supposedly being harmful because you breathe in some of what you've just exhaled.  It's no use arguing that one unless you're good at citing examples succinctly, with specific sources etc., and you know how hopeless I am at being succinct.  But imagine you're being told to wear a mask and you believe it could kill you to wear one or do you very serious harm.  You'd soon claim exemption. 

As I look at my past and my future, I have moments - to my shame - when I wish I'd been less ethical and got myself a job in the sort of organisation that's notorious for exploiting the current political system.  I bet if I'd had interview coaching and put up a good CV and exploited contacts, I could have had a nice, secure little niche in something like Serco or whatever.  But then if I'd done that, I'd be sitting here now guilt-tripping.

I'm sure a lot of non mask wearers could wear masks but I think most GPs want to please their patients and would sign a form to someone with mild asthma who wouldn't be affected by a mask or who has mild social anxiety in case they get anxious about the mask. Plus, I used to wear a mask whenever I left the house and while on steroids up to April 2021 was absolutely fine wearing one. Since stopping steroids I have extreme fatigue and wearing a mask causes me to sweat and almost pass out and it's difficult to breathe. What I do is wear a mask until I am struggling to breathe, then remove it for a bit, rest and regain my breathe then attempt to wear it again. Sometimes successfully and sometimes not. And I doubt that medically I would be deemed exempt from mask wearing so if such an exemption scheme existed I might struggle. But because of my problem with masks it's very rare I enter public buildings, I shop online fortnightly. 

My thought early on in the pandemic was that people who couldn't wear masks should be requested to use online shopping or find someone to shop on their behalf of that was possible. So not banning non mask wearers from shops but I felt such requests would reduce the amount of people in shops etc not wearing masks.

On mask wearing, when the compulsion was first introduced I noticed still quite a few people were not wearing mask in my local supermarket. Presumably they were claiming exemption as the door staff were quite diligent checking people on entry.

As time went on I saw fewer and fewer people not wearing a mask, and is now quite a rare sight.

I do wonder how this will change in a few weeks time.

For myself I dislike masks as my nose immediately starts running and my eyeballs mist up. I don't wear glasses. I not sure what I will do. I will probably play it by ear and wear a mask if I consider the store too crowded.

Sunny Clouds:
I find the type of mask makes a difference and I think different masks suit different people.

I find also that it makes a difference how I wash my masks.  I usually wet them, rub with handwash then leave to soak for a while before rinsing and hanging up.  I found that where I hang them up makes a big difference in the hay fever season, and also, given my tree-mould allergy, in certain sorts of damp weather.

I found I got a problem with sebhorreic dermatitis on my face with a batch of shop-bought cotton-blend masks until I bunged them through the washing machine instead of handwashing.  I hadn't had that problem with multi-layered home-made cotton-blend masks a friend had sent me.  I think the ones my friend sent me were a higher proportion of cotton.

But after one machine wash, the shop-bought masks seemed fine hand-washed.  

In certain weather conditions, I find it worth my while to switch masks if I've walked past too many plants I get a reaction to, because mould spores and pollen seem to stick to the mask and still get in.

That's when I could wish I'd got a super-duper mask that's designed to stop lots of different stuff rather than having as its prime function to trap moisture which may be carrying the virus, rather than other sorts of particles.


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