‘Seven reasons to be cheerful this Christmas – from vaccines to Bradley Walsh’ – Eva Simpson

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Boosters, fewer hangovers, soap storylines and Bradley Walsh, plus we are still allowed to laugh things off, unlike in North Korea, says Eva Simpson

The coronavirus vaccine rollout has been a major achievement

If it wasn’t for my young son incessantly asking “how many days left?” – the at-home equivalent of “are we there yet?”, I don’t think it would register that Christmas is just two days away.

Yes, the tree is up and there are twinkling lights everywhere, but somehow it just doesn’t feel the same.

So many pre-Christmas parties and get-togethers have been cancelled and along with them opportunities to drink mulled wine and eat mince pies with friends and colleagues, some of whom I haven’t seen for almost two years.

The rising Covid cases, especially where I live in London, made me think twice about going out Christmas shopping. Instead I’ve done it all online.

But getting bits on Amazon, while more convenient, doesn’t quite invoke the same festive spirit.

If we’re not careful, this year’s holiday season, already overshadowed by Omicron, could feel like something we just want to get through rather than something to enjoy.

So after another tough year, I’d like to take a moment to reflect on some of the reasons to be cheerful.

We’re not in lockdown. Granted, that may change, but it’s a relief just being able to know we can spend Christmas Day with the people we want to spend it with, unlike last year when we had no choice but to stick to our bubbles.

  • We have a vaccine that works. At the end of 2020 the UK had started taking the first tentative steps towards vaccinating the country. Now, according to figures from the Office for National Statistics, 96.5% of adults in England have received one dose of the vaccine while 91.8% have received two. It’s a brilliant achievement.
  • We have a booster programme that is ramping up which protects more people and saves more lives.
  • Schools haven’t been closed. As a parent of two school children you don’t know what a relief that is. I can’t go back to home schooling.
  • Not going out means less of a hangover, the older I get the less able I am to cope with them.
  • If you’re a soap fan, there’s no better time of the year than Christmas. Secrets are revealed, storylines climax and the producers do their best to spread untold misery and joy. Don’t you just love it.
  • Bradley Walsh will be everywhere, and I mean everywhere. But he’s a walking ray of sunshine, so that’s fine. If he can’t cheer you up I don’t know what will.
  • And lastly, let’s all be thankful that no matter how bad it gets, we don’t live in North Korea where laughing has been officially banned for 11 days to mark the 10th anniversary of the death of previous ruler Kim Jong Il. More no, no, no, than ho, ho, ho.
  • Have a safe and happy Christmas.

    On a roll

    It’s barmy and I don’t get the obsession with sausage rolls, but YouTuber LadBaby is on course to bag his fourth number one Christmas single and overtake the Spice Girls as having the most consecutive Christmas number ones.


    LadBaby’s Sausage Rolls for Everyone features Sir Elton John and Ed Sheeran

    Sausage Rolls for Everyone features Sir Elton John and Ed Sheeran and all the proceeds go to the Trussell Trust charity.

    It also raises awareness of poverty and the rising use of food banks.

    It’s a worthy number one.

    No name-calling

    While it’s concerning that some people still aren’t getting jabbed, this new trend of calling them idiots, as Tony Blair did today, or selfish, isn’t going to help.

    Instead they should be explaining to those who are hesitant that vaccines are safe and are our best way out of this crisis.

    Name-calling isn’t the answer.

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    George Holan

    George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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