Was the maskless man in my carriage dying of Covid?

A man without a mask appeared to be dying of Covid, or something quite like it, on the London to Guildford train. Hunched double in his seat across the aisle, he groaned as he coughed, gasped as he sneezed, and sniffed as a way of clearing the mess because he hadn’t got a tissue. Sans mask, sans handkerchief he spluttered and spattered. His capacity to ignore my stare was magnificent. I’m not a tolerant person, and when someone is sneezing at me during what is supposed to be a pandemic I cannot muster generosity. Sitting on the worn, red upholstery of the 1453 South Western train service from Waterloo, I

Trust the NHS to take the worst elements of the private sector

After driving around the hospital grounds in concentric circles until I was surely down a wormhole, I found the scanning unit. It was shoehorned down a narrow alley and had four parking spaces outside its door, all of them empty, but the sign above them was clear: ‘Private parking, wheel-clamping in operation.’ It did not say patient parking. Most likely, with a sign like that, it was staff parking. I looked around and realised I was stuck down a dead end. My only option was to reverse backwards, craning my neck around because the old Volvo long ago ceased to have functioning beepers. As my neck was the reason I