A-Z

Paul X

Age at interview: 44
Brief Outline:

Gender: Male
Background: Paul is 44 years old and is White British. He is married, with two children, and works as a tour guide. Paul was not tested for Covid, but he thinks he had it in February 2020. His symptoms were a constant cough and a high temperature.

 

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Paul first heard about Covid when it hit mainstream news in the UK, around January or February 2020. He remembers it hitting Italy quite badly around this time and people talking about whether Covid would reach the UK. When the lockdowns started happening, Paul was quite surprised at just how much did shut down. He did not feel prepared for the pandemic and felt like it was a thing that affected “faraway places and faraway people.” He also became worried about money because he was not able to work as a tour guide during the pandemic.
 
In the middle of February 2020, Paul developed a cough. He says that this appeared randomly and he did not really understand where he caught it from. He was still working during this time and remembers people looking at him weirdly. Paul also decided to buy hand sainitiser during this time and felt like that was a really “proactive thing to do.”
 
In March 2020, he remembers having a bad temperature and being bed ridden for two days. He also says that his children developed temperatures, but were not as unwell as him. Paul did not ring a doctor during this time and just decided to quarantine. His thought process was that the doctor could not do much and that there would be no access to a testing kit. These symptoms lasted into April and started to fade in early to mid-May.
 
In August 2020, some symtpoms returned. Paul remembers he would wake at two or three in the morning every night. The coughing got so bad that Paul had to have a chest scan, which he said showed nothing. In October 2020, Paul was given nasal spray and inhaler because his symptoms were continuing. By mid-November his cough had almost stopped. Since catching Covid Paul has had almost no smell whatsoever.

 

 

Paul X, a tour guide, remembers wondering what he would do if tourism stopped and how his livelihood might be affected.

Paul X, a tour guide, remembers wondering what he would do if tourism stopped and how his livelihood might be affected.

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So, I’m not exactly sure when I was first aware of it but I’m going to guess around, well, when whenever it started hitting the mainstream news, I suppose so late January, early February maybe, so probably February more. As I am a full-time professional tourist guide, so I do all sorts of tours for all sorts of people and I do remember on one tour, I think late February, it started to become a thing in Italy and I remember a lot of speculation. Some people were saying, “Oh it will be good because all the Italian tours will be rebooking here instead.” So that sounded yeah, whatever, sounded potentially, you know, on a very personal level, beneficial but nobody really knew. But there was a lot of speculation as well about how things were going to get closed down. I remember having a fear that they might shut.

 

Paul X had a cough that was more violent than usual and didn’t go away.

Paul X had a cough that was more violent than usual and didn’t go away.

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It was very violent and it just didn’t go away. That’s why, I didn’t know. I’m not an, I’m not very medical so I don’t know. Simply, on a personal level, because it was unlike, I just thought the chances of getting a cough unlike any cough I’ve ever had at the same time as the worldwide pandemic, there may well be a link there.

 

For Paul X, a tour guide, Covid-related restrictions stopped his job completely for several months.

For Paul X, a tour guide, Covid-related restrictions stopped his job completely for several months.

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I remember sort of saying as well, I remember thinking clearly “I’d better work on me CV and go back to my office CV because there’s not that much here for guiding”, so I thought I’d better, you know, see what else is out there but of course, we realised there wasn’t. We probably could survive financially for a bit but it’s just a knee jerk reaction that I need to, I need to find a new career because there’s not any, you know, tours have been stopped. I remember, I remember saying something like, hopefully by June, I’m hoping by June it will be okay again, which seemed like a lot, that’s three months of work out of the window. I can’t, that seems like a, I thought that was a sensible approach. So okay, let’s write off three months then by June, which is the busiest month, I want to be back and that changed in my head to September. Then yeah and like now well, I might just change my mind because the news is but I’ve actually got no expectations now.

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