Sunday, July 01, 2007

Day of Defiance

Today, the 1st of July 2007, I am no longer permitted to smoke in The Post Office. This is me looking over at The Post Office from my local hostelry on 30th June at about midnight.

Official no-smoking signs adorn many shop fronts and estate agencies windows. This is the law, the businesses will be breaking the law if they do not display these signs.

The prime minister has been on the television and says that it his duty to protect the "British way of life". He was referring to the threat of terrorism. The terror alert status of the country is now at critical. How apt that this should coincide with the end of the world as I new it.

How terrifying that the improvised car bombs of Tiger Tiger and Glasgow airport should drown out coverage of my Day of Defiance on the British media. The news however still manages to cover the smoking ban as its second headline. An illustration of just how important todays date is in the history of social change.

My wife does not know what she will do tomorrow. Her day had usually started with an hour in a local cafe drinking tea and smoking with her friends, preparing her body and mind for the days work. That is what she had chosen to do for years and now she doesn't even know how she will spend her lunchbreak. Catching up with her daughter was her usual habit over a tea and a fag, they had previously met every day at lunch in a local hotel close to work. Instead all that she can come up with is sitting in her car in the council car park where she works. She is resigned to doing this alone and to flouting the council rule that says there is no smoking allowed in cars in the carpark.

I am quite disturbed by this turn of events despite it being foretold for sometime. The only thing I can do is write on my blog. My working day is unaffected as, working in a hospital, I have for some time now been walking to the boundary to have a cigarrette.

Our weekly marital treat of an evening meal out together can no longer happen as before. We could have our meal and leave the table to go outside when we wish to smoke. This does not however seem quite the same.

I'm told that I've been killing people, so I am a terrorist presumably, and no longer part of the British way of life.