Normally I would go this morning to a small village war memorial and stand in the cold November air while we prayed a little, sang O God, Our Help In Ages Past, and observed the usual silence between bugle calls.
But a few weeks ago, I was told this was impossible. Apparently we would all be too close together, or something. So the event was to be switched to a nearby cemetery, where we could all stand a long way from each other.
‘There will be white crosses painted on the grass to indicate where people should stand to ensure social distancing… Masks are not compulsory in this scenario, but their use would be appreciated,’ said the parish circular.
And, of course, we were supposed to leave our names and addresses in case, in the wind and the cold, as we avoided each other, we somehow contracted or passed on Covid.
How, I wondered, would those we were commemorating have viewed these pathetic precautions and the spirit of subservience to the State (constantly advised by Church leaders) which they express?
I was getting ready to endure this parody, wondering if it would make me laugh out loud or lose my temper, or both.
But then Johnson and Hancock, our prison governor and chief warder, once again made normal life illegal. The feeble pseudo-ceremony was cancelled, as are all other religious services.
Quite a few people in the churches and in politics are beginning, too late, to seethe about this repression of an important part of national life. Any actual war veteran, should he take part in a Remembrance Service inside, could be fined on the spot by an official.