*Raise your hand if you’ve been personally victimised by 2020*
While New Year’s Eve is usually reserved for meticulously planning ‘new year, new me’ posts for social media and searching for resolutions that can be maintained for at least a fortnight, here at Secret Manchester we’ve been getting pretty excited about all the very normal things we’ll get to do next year when Ms Rona finally leaves town.
Now we’re aware that when the clock strikes twelve tonight Covid-19 won’t miraculously disappear, but the fact that two vaccines have been approved and well over half a million Brits have already been vaccinated gives us hope that at some point next year, we’ll be able to resume business as usual. In the meantime, here are twelve things we cannot wait to do when the pandemic is over!
1. Go outside without the fear of being fined or infected by a deadly virus
If 2020 has taught us anything it’s that you really don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone. Not being able to head outside without a “reasonable excuse” pretty much defined this year, as did social distancing (two words we’ll very happily leave in 2020). Venturing outside without a second thought (or a face mask) will be our first port of call post-pandemic!
2. Spend time with people you don’t live with
I love you, mum, I really do, but there’s only so much quality time I can handle. It’s not you, it’s the pandemic. Hanging out with friends and family without distancing, forming a bubble or taking Covid tests will be a very welcomed breath of fresh air after this year’s social calendar (or lack thereof).
3. Let’s leave Zoom calls in 2020
No, I don’t want to jump on a Zoom call. No, I don’t want to turn my camera on. If I must, I’ll attend in my pyjamas and only unmute myself to say goodbye – it’s all about compromises. Zoom calls were a means to an end this year, but I think we can all agree that they should be left in 2020.
4. Think of excuses as to why we can’t make that event we don’t want to attend
“Coronavirus” was a pretty epic excuse to get out of, well, anything. No one would ever dispute a pandemic as a reason to avoid a social event. So we’ll have to go back to basics and recycle some of our favourite excuses when we just don’t fancy being a social butterfly. When in doubt, go with “I just remembered I have to pick my grandma up from the airport” – works every time.
5. Never hear the words support bubble or social distancing again
We must leave these phrases in 2020. They are far too triggering to remain in our vocabulary throughout 2021. While we’re at it, let’s add quarantine and self-isolation to that list…
6. Spend far too much money on drinks
One of the very few upsides to lockdown and these tiered restrictions is that I haven’t been able to waste money in pubs and bars. Having said that, I cannot wait to complain about the extortionate drinks prices while heading to the third bar of the week. There’s nothing quite like the thrill of not knowing whether your card will be declined on your round. I can’t wait!
7. Sign up to the gym and never step foot in the premises
Tier 4 has interfered with many things, including our rocky relationship with the gym. Every year we sign up, buy new workout clothes, spread the word of our ‘new year, new me’ moment and avoid the gym like the plague (or corona, more accurately). It’s basically a tradition at this point. We’re counting down the days till the gyms are back open so we can continue not going.
8. No more Zoom dates
Zoom was such a traumatic part of 2020 that it deserves two mentions. Us singletons really had it rough this year. The only thing worse than no dates, was zoom dates. Having awkward small talk with a stranger over video call is definitely something we can also leave behind. We’re looking forward to dinner and drinks, dinner with a view, or any kind of dinner date next year for that matter – it’ll be a vast improvement.
The comical elbow tap is getting old now, I miss actual hugs. It’s the little things in life, like a cuppa on a chilly day or a hug from a good friend. As soon as this is all over I’ll be dishing out hugs to everyone in sight – it’ll be a free for all.
10. Go on holiday without your flights being cancelled last minute
One could say that having a holiday booked is almost as exciting as the trip itself. Counting down the days, planning outfits and making an itinerary is all part of the thrill. But 2020 made that nearly impossible with flights delayed, rescheduled and cancelled left, right and centre. As soon as Corona leaves the premises, we’ll be making up for lost time by booking a few (dozen) flights. Bon voyage!
11. Moan about the trams
“5 whole minutes til the next tram?!”, “Just a single carriage?!” or my personal favourite “Why the hell is it cancelled, AGAIN?”. All in good time.
12. Get vaccinated
Last, but certainly not least, is getting vaccinated. Hopefully, we’ll all get the jab sooner than later and we’ll be able to get our lives back on track. 2021, we’re ready for you!