Leviticus 254/84: Dining In Night ... and the EU loses the plot on vaccines ...
In this pandemic crisis EU's structural weakness is brutally exposed. There's no pleasure in hearing that all countries in the EU, our Friends in Europe as the phrase goes, are greatly disadvantaged because of the bureaucratic approaches the EU used towards forward orders of vaccines. Kate Bingham, who was the freewheeler brought in by Boris Johnston in May 2020 to lead pro bono the UK's international search and speculative order placing for as then unproven vaccines is being rightly lauded; her punts on what would come good have been excellent. She's a St Paul's Girls/ Oxford educated highly successful venture capitalist with a 1st Class degree in Biochemistry so she's smart. But she's the first to admit that vaccinations not vaccines will be the measure of future success and that's where, because she ordered well in advance and because local manufacturing capacity was geared up 3 months ahead of mainland Europe, the NHS has the chance to shine at last. Boris has set them the target of 14 million jabs by February 15th and by January 30th it's managed in excess of 8 million … so that's going to require 375,000 per future day on average; best single day so far was been 480,000+ [and today it was matched at 487,000] so it's clearly doable if the vaccines are delivered. The significance of 14 million is that is covers all the most vulnerable people in the UK. Mind you, their second jabs are not talked up too greatly just yet awhile but they have to be achieved in 12 weeks … they've just started but another 13.5 million is still needed for that first tranche at the same time as the balancing 40+ million mild/ low risk inhabitants in the UK expect to get their first jab …. my 2nd jab is due by Good Friday April 2nd and Avril's by April 15th.
How the EU lost it yesterday. It's sad to see the outdistanced Eurocrats in Bruxelles seeking to change the public focus and narrative - and to blame the UK for its challenges. They've even invoked then backtracked on Article 16 in the Northern Irish Brexit Protocols suggesting closing the sacred not-a-border between north and south; and they're proceeding with de facto 'nationalisation' of all vaccine production across the EU so it could only honour international contracts outwith the EU if on an approved list they've conjured up overnight excluding the UK. The Belgian police raided the HQ of AstraZeneca in Belgium on the EU's say-so! Finally yesterday, on the very day the EU's own medical authorities finally authorised the AstraZeneca vaccine for all EU age groups Germany said it won't use it for over 65s and President Macron said it wasn't a good vaccine anyway. Good to hear Boris is staying on the high moral ground, promising all the help we can give to the EU nations once we're all vaccinated.
Dining In was once again a pleasure. And Avril managed a WWII flavour by recycling my Head Chef-on-Thursday's surplus Morrison's chilled liver, bacon and beef to create a fine Ragout accompanied by Morrison's potato mash et gratin de chou-fleur au fromage. It was preceded by an excellent and imaginative Fetta with Anchovies on Jacobs Biscuit and finely sliced Italian Tomatoes.
Gordon's 0% looks-like-Gin and It - Martini 0% - were enlivened for Avril with the merest hint of Portobello Road 42% Gin on the rim of her Olympia cocktail glass.
Jane Shilling's Biography and now back to Barbara Pym. My commitment to Jane Shilling led me to her first memoir which unexpectedly tells of the development of her love of horses and horse riding in the lead up to the Ban of Fox Hunting with Dogs in 2004. It's well written of course but I've never been a horsey person and she didn't persuade me to become such … but I did persevere to the end and patiently await her second memoir, on order and due soon. Meanwhile I'm back to Barbara Pym's tale of life just before the outbreak of WWII, Crampton Hodnet, written at that time by her.
P.S. January 30th was the day Adolph Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany by President Hindenburg in 1933 and the day that Mahatma Ghandi was assassinated in New Delhi in 1948 by the Hindu extremist Nathuram Godse who resented Ghandi's tolerance of Muslims.
Published Date: January 30th 2021