Raising the BARR – Week ending 4 September 2020

The Most Covid-19 Safe Community in Our Area

For this one, I would like you to put your thinking caps on. Here’s the question: we have one postcode in our area that remains completely COVID-19 free and has not had a single case of COVID-19 ever, where is it?

It has a train line going through and multiple train stops. It has primary schools, but not a high school. There certainly used to be more schools across this area, but many of them have closed down over time. There are multiple sets of traffic lights. There are pubs and clubs and multiple service stations. There is, of course, a coal history and the area was originally settled by Scots and Geordies.

Some streets are named by numbered sequence and others named after significant regional towns from across NSW. Famously, it was the one place in our area that has historically claimed to have a “beach”.

Recently a museum was opened and one of the villages in this postcode hosts one of our state’s longest-running Eisteddfods. There are war memorials and a park named after a Victoria Cross recipient. There are a famous lamp and even a speedway. Teams can be named as Bears or Hawks and other things.

I am talking of course about postcode 2326 and the villages of Weston, Abermain, Neath, Sawyers Gully, Loxford and Bishops Bridge. There has not been a single case of COVID-19, thus far, in this entire postcode. And it’s the only postcode that can claim that status in our area. Woohoo to all of the 2326ers out there.

The Best and Worst of a Civil Society – At a Supermarket

Last weekend I had the opportunity to line up with so many others at the front of a major supermarket outlet, waiting for the doors to be open and their new line of special items to be released. I watched as the great bulk of people, 99%, did the “right” thing, but was gobsmacked at the selfishness of the 1% that thought themselves so entitled that they ignored the “right” thing.
I was about 50 people deep in a line of 150 people. It was an organised, civilised line complete with good social distancing. Many of us chatted in the morning sun, waiting the 30-45 minutes for the door to open. But then, in that last 10 minutes, along came three separate individuals, one with young daughter in tow, and walked themselves right on up to the front of the line and waited there for the doors to open. I kid you not!

The doors are flung open and in we all march, making sure that the person in front, who had lined up longer than you, had the first bite of the goods. So too, in stormed the self-centred individuals who had thought themselves so entitled that they didn’t need to line up like the rest of us. It was clear that their needs were far more important than the needs of anyone else. The lady that lined up behind me missed out on her target item, because 2 of the 3 that pushed in, grabbed the same item before she got there.

So my concern is this – next time there is an orderly line of people waiting, what would that lady that was behind me do? Would she line up like a civilised person in a civilised society that functions so well based on norms of common decency, or would she take the lead of those others and simply shove her way to the front and create a crowd of people battling each other in a fight of the fittest style contest?