Today is St. Patrick’s day, a celebration of Irish culture. Usually involving large crowds, beer and all things green. You may not be able to go out and celebrate this year, but I hope you have a nice day with a green treat at home and think, this time next year The Toucan in Soho will be open for Guinness all round.
We have some great photos to share, spring is on its way! We also have the last installment of Sandra’s blog. It’s been great to read about her vaccine journey these last 5 weeks. Please email John if you would also like to write a piece to share on a Wednesday. Leah has sent over some great workshops available from the Phoenix Garden too.
Lastly, there was an error with regards to the Bollywood Dancing. This will start TOMORROW (Thursday 18th) at 2pm. Please email John for the link.
Enjoy today’s newsletter,
WHAT CAN I SHARE WITH YOU TODAY?
Sandra’s blog post
The 5th & final instalment of Sandra’s Blog is called ‘I encounter Vaccine Hesitancy’. It explains Sandra’s personal experience after getting the jab.
This has been a great blog. Thanks Sandra!
Sandra: My Vaccination Journey – I encounter Vaccine Hesitancy – #5
On my walk home after my vaccination, unable to contain my joy, I stopped to talk to a security guard. I told him I had just been vaccinated and asked him if he was looking forward to his turn. His response was evasive. He said he would see when the time came. As I walked on, I realised that perhaps he wasn’t going to get vaccinated at all. I wished I had had a longer conversation with him. But now I’m glad I didn’t. It could so easily have become an argument.
Two weeks later I volunteered to become a Camden Covid-19 Health Champion. I would be encouraging others to get vaccinated. I attended a two-hour training session. And guess what? It was all about ‘Having Better Conversations’! I learned the importance of listening properly before attempting to deliver a health message, and that some people really need to talk to their GP.
Feeling slightly more confident after my training, I went back to see my security guard friend. I thought he could get very ill with Covid. He had a number of questions about the vaccine. And he wanted to know the sources of my information. No challenge there then! I went home and did my homework. You can see his questions and my answers in the Vaccine Q & A below. I am hoping my answers will change his mind.
Now it’s time for my second jab. But my blog ends here. Thank you for coming with me on My Vaccination Journey. I would love to hear about yours. I celebrated ‘FEELING SAFER’ with these fish and chips from Gigs, Tottenham Street. Delicious!
PS. If you missed your vaccination appointment you can re-book at https://www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination or ring the NHS on 119. Or try your GP.
Vaccine Q & A
Do I need to worry about side-effects?
“Most side effects of the Vaccine are mild and should not last longer than a week. Serious allergic reactions are rare.” This is what it says on the NHS website. By contrast, the side-effects of the Virus (particularly in those over 45) can be serious, are sometimes fatal, and may persist for months or years. I’m not quoting this from anywhere. We all know it from the News. It’s not the Vaccine we need to worry about. It’s the Virus!
Is it safe?
Oxford Vaccine: How did they make it so quickly? This is the title of a fascinating BBC News article from 23 November 2020 which you can google online.
In a nutshell: some years ago scientists in Oxford prepared a vaccine formula that could be quickly adapted for a new coronavirus when needed. No corners were cut at any stage of its development. And you can find similarly reassuring assessments online of the safety of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.
Does it work?
On 22 February 2021, the British Medical Journal reported some wonderful news: “In Scotland, hospital admissions fell by 85% in those who had received the Pfizer Vaccine and by 94% in those who had received the Oxford vaccine” For the full article, click this Link.
Will it be effective against new variants?
New variants are a problem. Existing vaccines may be less effective against them but do seem to offer protection against serious disease from some of them. So it is still important to get vaccinated now. We may need to get vaccinated every year, as with the flu jab. Scientists are working on a different type of vaccine which would be effective against all variants. See Telegraph, 1 March 2021, the article entitled: New Covid-19 variants: what we know about the Kent, South Africa and Brazil strains.
Sandra’s Blog Posts
Sandra. My Vaccination Journey – Side Effects and Beyond – #5
Sandra. My Vaccination Journey – Side Effects and Beyond – #4
Sandra. My Vaccination Journey – My Vaccination Day – #3
Sandra. My Vaccination Journey. Waiting for my Vaccination – #2
Sandra. My Vaccination Journey. Before there was a Vaccine – #1
Workshops @ The Phoenix Garden
From Leah at The Phoenix Garden
The Phoenix Garden is offering FREE online workshops to local residents! Join in to meet new people and learn new skills!
Flower Arranging Workshops for Over 55s
Wednesday 24th March or Wednesday 7th April, 3 pm – 4.30 pm.
Sign up HERE
8 sessions starting Friday 26th March, 2-3.30pm.
Sign up HERE
6 sessions starting Tuesday 23rd March, 2-3.30pm.
Sign up HERE
All materials (for example, pencils and sketchbooks for the drawing class) will be provided to you for free before the sessions!
A few are from my morning walks in Regent’s Park, with some of the animals that can be seen in ZSL from outside the gates. Jimmy and Yoda, the father and son Northern White Cheeked Gibbons, make amazing vocalisations that can be heard from far across the park.
The photos of the ill-looking Bactrian Camels were taken in the summer when they were moulting. I took them with their lovely fur this morning, 15 March.
The monochrome purple crab apple trees in Regent’s Park were from 8 March 2021. The hellebore and blackbird, seed balls, and acacia were all in Ridgmount Gardens on 8 March.
The parakeet and goldfinch were at a new bird table in Russell Square Gardens.
These lovely daffodils were are in St. James’ Park. Thank you for sending them in, Catherine.
Funny, Silly, Light-hearted Nonsense
That’s it for this Wednesday. I hope you all have a good week and enjoyed this week’s content from Dragon Hall!
Covent Garden Food Bank
Please do contact us if you need a food parcel – CCGG @7Dials can provide you with a free food package each week.
If you need help with shopping, collecting medication or just want someone to talk to by phone – please let us know. You can contact Amber at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can reach John either at email@example.com or 07759 646507 in case of an emergency.
Can You Help Dragon Hall Trust?
Your donation will support vulnerable members of our communities with food via Covent Garden Food Bank, calls via the phone support line and assistance to get online for those who are digitally disadvantaged.
Please do contact us if you need a food parcel – CCGG @7Dials might be able to provide you with a free food package each week. If you need help with shopping, collecting medication or just want someone to talk to by phone – please let us know.