Corona Virus – That was Then

Just two months ago – but it feels like ancient history now. I posted this on 3rd March – which is really not that long ago. Read it and weep.

I don’t bloody believe it.

I want to travel. I love travelling. I travelled a fair amount in the past.

I’m happy to travel independently. There are places I want to visit, there are things I want to do. There are adventures I want to have. My grand plan is to spend as much time as possible travelling once I hit retirement.

In the meantime, I’ve booked myself a trip to Italy in the summer. I’m flying, and staying in an AirBnB.

As adventures go, it’s a little tame I suppose, but it’s mine: I’ve planned it, I’ve saved up for it, and I’m looking forward to it.


Should I be flying anywhere when we know that air travel isn’t an eco-friendly form of transport? What does that do, not just to my plans to visit Naples, but to my plans to travel at all in my retirement? Do I just decide not to travel – or do I decide to do it anyway and to hell with the planet? Or do I fly and feel guilty? Or do I only go to places I can get to by car or ferry?

Also, a lot of people are concerned about the fact that I’m going on my own. ‘Will you be OK?’ they ask. Well, yes, I’ll be OK. I’ll be no less OK than I would be in any city in the UK. But still, it’s another hoop to jump through. Should I heed their concern and not go anywhere on my own? (Naples is just the start. I have plans…) If something was to happen to me, will it be all my fault for travelling alone?

And now we’ve got the fricking Corona virus as well – and it seems to be particularly prevalent in Italy.


  • To not have to feel guilty about flying
  • To not have to convince people that I’ll be fine on my own
  • To not get a potentially deadly disease while I’m out there

Is someone up there trying to tell me I shouldn’t do it? Or is this a test of my resolve? Probably neither – I think it’s simply bad timing.

I’ve checked on the Foreign Office website for their current advice on travel to Italy. As of this morning (3rd March 2020), apart from ten small villages in the north of the country, everywhere is fine. I’m actually closer to the virus here in West Yorkshire (there’s a confirmed case in Bradford and another in York) than I would be in Naples right now.

However – when I started writing this post (just yesterday morning) there were only three villages in the north of Italy that had a problem. This is not looking good.

Who knows what the situation will be like by the time I go? With only three cases, I wasn’t worried – but that three has become ten very quickly. By the time I travel it could have spread much much further – or it could have been brought under control.

I have travel insurance – I don’t think there’s much more I can do.

Here’s the latest advice from the World Health Organisation.

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. SisterStay says:

    All this time under lockdown, going nowhere, has given us a lot to think about in terms of how we will go places in future. And what effect that will have on the planet. When you consider how cheap and easy it has been to just nip off to another country for the weekend, you have to admit, it’s kind of crazy. Flights to Europe from Heathrow could sometimes be picked up for less than £20 – way cheaper than the train – and that, surely, is not sustainable. I’m not saying we shouldn’t still go on holidays. Not at all. But we should probably all go on less holidays and in a more responsible way.
    As for travelling solo, I think you’re amazing. Lots of women would like to do it but are worried about travelling on their own.
    I can see I need to write a blog too. Watch this space!


    1. I used to be able to fly from Shannon in Ireland to London for £5 each way – which was cheaper than driving to Limerick (our nearest ‘shopping’ town) and paying for parking. Like you say – crazy, and really not sustainable. But fun while it lasted.
      RE the blog – yes please!!


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