Fully trained vaccinator raring to go
I am now a fully trained “vaccinator” for the Covid vaccination drive. I had been sent a preliminary online application last week which asked a set of questions and then concluded by saying I wasn’t eligible. Usually I’d have given up at that point, pissed off that for some reason my less-than-conventional career as a freelance musician had been flagged up as implying I wasn’t capable / responsible enough. I don’t know if this was the real reason though, but since I was already most of the way through my training (which had been organised by the centre where I was to be vaccinating people) I chased them up. After a few more forms filled in, a telephone interview and a brief video interview I received an email to say my contract would be on its way soon.
In the meantime I received the first of two doses of the vaccine this morning. This feels a real privilege, given it’s such a precious commodity. In our training we were told that people posing as volunteers have tried to get into vaccination centres in order to steal the vaccine - it’s so valuable because many people who are willing to pay good money for it will have to wait for months before it is their turn.
After seven days I should be ready to start vaccinating people, assuming I have received my contract from the recruitment agency. I will be paid for the hours I work - Not a huge amount but enough to make me feel like I’m taking a small step up from the previous nine months of unemployment. I’m also excited to join the huge team being assembled to tackle the virus.
I have been composing and recording again. This time a number that features my harmonica playing. I knocked together a version, created a video using myself miming playing to the track, and popped it on Facebook to see what people thought. Four days later and I’ve had 114 ‘likes’ and dozens of positive comments. Great for the morale. A drumming friend has offered to replace the midi drum track with proper drums, so when that’s done I’ll add it to my YouTube channel.
Here’s a link to the Facebook video:
Cases of the virus are still rising but we are told there are hints that it might be levelling off in London. Not much comfort, given it’s so rife at the moment, but with the vaccination effort being ramped up it feels like we might be starting to beat it. Having said that, new strains keep popping up all round the world. Travel bans are imposed to try to contain the new strains, but it seems that these are always too late.
So I’ll be continuing to practice, write and record music for some time yet, in between working to vaccinate the country.