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Getting back to what once was known as social life

Tipping my toes in the new-old

By Zsofia Kiszely

Photo courtesy of Pexels via Pixabay

I know talking about Covid is getting a little boring now; however, with Covid restrictions easing more and more, large events are taking place. So I thought it would be worthwhile to share my experience of a concert from a couple of weeks ago.

Originally, I wasn’t planning on attending a concert at all until next year, but my best friend travelled from England to Scotland to see her favourite band and had a spare ticket, so to spend time together - which we are only able to do once or twice a year - I decided the night before the event to drive down to Glasgow and meet her. Probably like most of us, I have not been to a large event in nearly 2 years now, therefore it is needless to say that being surrounded by so many people was quite a shock.

Obviously, Covid-19 is certainly still a part of our lives which meant there were rules to follow. Everyone from the audience had to have a lateral flow test done within 48 hours of the concert in order to gain entry to the event. One rule that I missed having is the wearing of face coverings. There were hundreds of people, no social distancing and I was okay for a while. It felt like old days, having fun with friends. I have always been a little anxious in crowds, but what I felt there after about an hour I did not expect. I think being in lockdown so many times for so long and keeping our distances from other people have certainly altered our perception of what is normal or acceptable when out and around people. And, of course, everyone has different feelings about what feels safe and what does not. For me, the breaking point came after standing in a crowd (which I have not done in such a long time) and my anxiety kicked in. Suddenly, my brain rang the Covid alert bell and all these thoughts came rushing about contracting the virus there, and then spreading it at my work, and to my friends and family. That’s when I had to leave that place. I had to go and get some fresh air.

Some people will say that I should have never gone, and large events should not be happening yet - and some part of me might even agree - but if not now, then when are we going to start living a somewhat normal life again? I believe that the introduction of vaccine passports might bring some ease to some people - including myself - but how can we be ever sure whether the person standing next to us is spreading the virus at that exact moment?

The moral of my story would be that you should do what feels safe and acceptable to you (following local guidance at the same time, of course). It felt safe and normal to me to go and enjoy a concert surrounded by my friends, but when I started to feel uneased, I realised this might have been too quick for me.


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