I went to my local Asda a week before lock-down kicked in, and it was horrible. Something odd was happening, but it was hard to pin down exactly what. People were throwing themselves into the shop only to find empty shelves. It was like the week before Christmas, but without the false sense of fun.
Now conscious of how close people were getting to me, I had my first Howard Hughes moment. People were coughing into their hands and then attempting to juggle ten packs of toilet rolls, all of which I now considered contaminated. Things weren’t normal; It was all too weird. The zombie apocalypse was starting, and I was in the middle of it; in the bakery aisle; in Asda. Fearing that someone was about to mumble “.. brains…..” I quickly headed home and jumped into a bath of sanitising hand gel (or at least I would have if Asda had not sold out)
Taking a trip to the shops was now a problem. I’d read on the internet that zombies found asthmatic brains a delicacy, so I was staying at home for as long as it took.
It would mean relying on the internet to do my shopping, but that would work. I wouldn’t hoard, and I reckoned that I’d be able to arrange a weekly shopping delivery. I had a Plan B, I also read on the internet the zombies had an aversion to Volvos, so I knew I’d be safe if I had to fall back on “Click and Collect”.
There were also some alternatives to online supermarkets, as a few local businesses had spotted an opportunity and diversified. A wholesale local fruit and veg supplier was selling to the public. A local farm was delivering organic veg and bread. But the best news was that Milkmen were back, and they’d happily bring me milk, cheese and yoghurts three times a week.
The plan worked. We relied on the freezer a little more than average, but we survived. Never hoarding or panic buying, we lived easily for months, using just the internet to get what we needed.
There have been few positives during lockdown, but the ease and range of online shopping are one. Larger companies have upped their online shopping game, and for smaller companies, it’s shortened the distance from supplier to customer.
Lockdown would have been considerably different, and a little scarier if it had not been so easy to sit in front of a laptop in wonder that you can click a few buttons, and then two hours later supplies appear on your doorstep.
I will never watch Dawn of the Dead again, though.