Think local. Buy local.

“Don’t offer a handshake when guests arrive.” “Don’t top-up water and wine glasses, but instead leave the bottles on the table so guests can help themselves.” These are just a couple of phrases from the new training manual for the hospitality and restaurant industry. I am sure strange and counter-intuitive behaviour to many in the industry, but it is what is going to be required in the future and at this stage none of us know for how long that we will have to act strangely.

The whole manual has been turned upside down in terms of our social behaviour. I did say to someone the other day that I would hate to be single during this period, one of the many negative thoughts you could torture yourself with. But where did it all go wrong for the year 2020? I remember commenting at the beginning of year on how I was looking forward to the year because it felt good. 2019 had been a tough year and there was this feeling of anticipation. Plenty had been planned for and to look forward to and even the numbers of the year sounded great. I was not the only one to express such a feeling. But then wham! the Coronavirus pandemic hit us and threw the whole world into turmoil.

There are many unanswered questions as to how, when and where the virus originated and we may never know the answer to these and the many more questions that people are asking. A strange statement to make in this technologically advanced period in history. Additionally, there are many conspiracy theories that have been put forward.

It has been interesting and perturbing, or should I say disturbing, to see how the various governments have put their own measures in place to try and stop the spread of the disease. The debate is why they, the so-called politicians in each individual country, all have such a different view in their approach to finding a solution and a cure. It really is shameful to see how many governments have become embroiled in politicking and, dare I say it, are emblazoned on their own corrupt path to enrich themselves. Some of the decisions taken by these ostensible leaders is plain mind boggling.

Can there be positives that we can learn from as a result of this difficult period in our lives? I say yes. We need to be optimistic and down the line we will all benefit. With virtually every country going through some form of lockdown, localism has almost become a new way of life. Looking after those nearest and dearest to you has been re-enforced by the limited movement that has been allowed. Economically it has been disastrous. And this is the point. To get our economy going again let us think and support local. After all, the old cliché does say that charity starts at home. The number of calls I have had recently from people looking for new local suppliers is encouraging. I know I will be supporting this movement.