The Garden

A blog by Marijn van Hoorn


Marijn van Hoorn

Thanks to a loophole in the system where a mild condition of mine (which will remain unspecified, thank you very much) meant that the NHS had me down as Vulnerable™, i was eligible for a coronavirus vaccine far earlier than i otherwise would have been. After some trials and tribulations trying to get myself properly on the list, on the twenty-fourth of Marchα i went down to a cricket club in Ashington and filed into a queue outside. This is what it was like.

After getting to the end of the queue, i climbed up some stepsβ and a woman scanned my head with a temperature checker to make sure i wasn’t illicitly smuggling the coronavirus into the building.γ This was immediately followed by the age-old ritual of “sorry, how do you spell that again?”, where well meaning people sitting behind a desk at a computer try desperately to figure out how my name is spelt in the database.

I was then shepherded to a blue plastic chair. The doctor asked some routine questions — have you been vaccinated in the past seven days, have you ever had an allergic reaction — and stuck a needle of the Pfizer vaccine in my right arm. He told me to sit inside for fifteen minutes to check that i wouldn’t go into anaphylactic shock or anything of that sort, which gave a good opportunity to watch the rest of the clientèle pass by — mostly middle-aged ladies and confused old men.

It’s been a day, and other than a dull annoyance in my upper arm and a sudden urge to buy a Windows Phone, i haven’t noticed any symptoms. I’ve heard the Pfizer one is worse on the second go, though, so wish me luck!