Jamie's Phuket Blog

2020 - A Year Not in Phuket

Where to begin? How was 2020 for you? It's been a shitty year for many people. If you are one of those idiots who thinks Covid-19 is a hoax, or if you refuse to wear a mask in a shop, or if you are one of those who has been breaking social distancing rules and don't care because you think you are healthy, well you can go jump in the sea. As I write this, 12 days into 2021, I am waiting for a text with my Covid test result. I took a test at a walk in testing center yesterday after a couple of days feeling feverish, and have now taken a couple of days off work, which might well turn out to be more, depends on the results! I have a close connection to Covid-19. Back in 2019, a few months after arriving back in England, I started working at a company called Abingdon Health, and as 2020 developed, the company has grown and is part of a consortium making Covid-19 antibody tests. And we have been very busy, especially over the second half of 2020. So, one plus for 2020 - I have had a good job! We are still living here in York, England. My son should be doing his GCSEs this year, but ... due to Covid, looks like that might be cancelled. My daughter finished a college business course earier this year and has had a few part time jobs, but due to Covid, jobs are hard to find!

Meanwhile, back in Phuket ... we still have a house for sale. My wife is in Thailand right now, been there for like 4 months. She had to do a 2 week government quarantine when she arrived - not allowed to leave the hotel room - thankfully it was paid by the Thai government for Thai nationals. We also have our house for sale in Chumphon. We had hoped to have sold already, but .. yeh, Covid. Travel restrictions in Thailand have been very strict, there are hardly any foreign tourists, and it's tough for local businesses, such as Sunrise Divers where I used to work and my friend's travel company Easy Day Thailand.

How quiet is Phuket? Have a look at the photo below posted on Twitter by my friend Steve who runs the Pineapple Guesthouse in Karon.

Life has kind of been in limbo for a year. Waiting to sell our property so we can buy here in England, waiting to see what happens with Covid-19, and it's got worse again. We've not taken any holidays. I took quite a lot of long weekends during the year, using up my work holiday allowance bit by bit. And of course I cannot really complain. Many people have had a bad year, lost jobs, lost income, lost loved ones. And let's not even get started on the other news of the year. I mean, here in the UK we have had Brexit and Boris, but that pales in comparison to the USA with continued and very justified anger about police killing black people, and then the USA has had a right wing, egotistical, narcisistic clown as President, who refuses to admit he is ever wrong, and gosh, let's hope that is all over in 8 days from now on 20 January.

Normally, my yearly Phuket blog reviews over the years - see list at the end of this post - will show all the places in and around Phuket that we visited. 2020 was the first year for me since 1999 that I did not spend any time in Thailand. The first year since 1994 that I spent the whole year in the UK! Getting used to life back here is not so hard. But we really need to sell our houses soon! And I am not sure I like the winter. Some cold days are nice, if the sun shines and it's not windy, but some days are cold, wet and breezy and I wish I was having a cold beer Chang on the beach in Phuket! Anyway, we did not spend the whole year in lockdown. I have half-heartedly started Jamie's Yorkshire Blog. And we did have a lot of nice days out during the summer when we all thought Covid-19 had gone away.

(above) Sunset in Knaresborough, June 2020.

(above) Roseberry Topping in the Yorkshire Moors, July 2020.

(above) Out driving in the Yorkshire Dales in August 2020.

UPDATE : My Covid-19 test was POSITIVE! So the kids and I will be isolating at home for another week.

So, please come on 2021, get better soon! I was maybe hoping we'd have a chance to take a Thai holiday in the summer, but we'll have to wait and see. I hope if you are reading this that your 2020 had some highs and your 2021 has some highs!

Best Wishes from York (England), not Phuket

Previous Yearly Reviews:

2019 - 2018 - 2017 - 2016 - 2015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2011 - 2010

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