Thu 14 May 2020: normal shopping is witchcraft

The chancellor has extended the “furlough” scheme until October, although with modifications. Currently I can’t work at all for my employer, even if they’ve got enough that needs doing for me to work part-time. That is apparently going to change. There will also be changes in how much the government contributes to the scheme vs how much employers contribute. In my case I doubt that would make much difference, as the government contributes 80% but only up to a maximum of £2,500 per month, so in reality they’re only contributing 50% of my salary, and my employer none at all. The government scheme would have to taper off a lot for me to notice in my pay packet. Lucky me.

It seems like online shopping is getting back to normal. A couple of days ago I went to Ocado’s site, more in hope than expectation, expecting to be told to bugger off as they were too busy. But no! The site is back to almost normal, and I could place an order for delivery today. The only differences are that a lot of the own-brand stuff was out of stock so I had to buy expensive branded clones of a few things instead, and that the delivery driver arrived over an hour early. I have no idea how they’ve managed this, as they’re still presumably prioritising vulnerable customers like for the past several weeks, and given their distribution infrastructure I don’t see how they can have increased their capacity that much in such a short time. I can only assume it’s witchcraft.

Mind you, having re-discovered the delights of a tourist-free Borough Market I intend to keep shopping there for as long as it’s practical – I went there again this morning – so my Ocado shopping will be less than normal for a while yet.