Weekly Update 4 January 2021

Lockdown Quiz
This week sees a  Ruby Anniversary of sorts as Julie Clarke’s 40th general knowledge quiz is loaded to the website, as well as the answers to number 39. Go to the quiz page where you’ll also find this week’s music quiz (number 39) and the answers to music quiz number 38. Our quiz page lists all the quizzes that have been set previously.

Group News

Another update on Covid-19
Unfortunately it’s more unwelcome news about the latest Covid restrictions. Tier 2 wasn’t great, but to go from Tier 2 into Tier 3 and then only a few days later into Tier 4 is very disappointing.
The consequence is that none of our u3a groups will be able to restart in this new year. Tier 3 would have enabled us to keep some of the outdoor groups going, but Tier 4 means that even the outdoor groups have to stop. Those of you that have been tracking the infection rates in the northwest or noting the latest advice from the relevant scientists probably expected this, but that doesn’t lessen the disappointment.
Realistically we can expect this to go on for quite some time. It’s inevitable that even limited social mixing over Christmas will create more infections, so we can probably expect a period of several weeks before the government relaxes the restrictions in our area. Let’s hope that at some point before winter is over we are able to go back into Tier 2 and we can restart some of the indoor groups as well as some outdoor sports and walking groups.
The good news is that the vaccination programme is now well under way. The Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is the latest to be approved for use in the UK, and this has the advantage of being easy to store, easy to transport and relatively cheap to supply, so we can expect this to be available in local health centres very soon. The age profile of u3a members puts many of us in the ‘vulnerable’ category. Even though lots of us object to being called vulnerable(!), it does at least mean that we will be near the front of the queue to be contacted for our jabs.
So let’s look forward to a year where we can be gradually more optimistic; where the rate of Covid infections starts to lessen as vaccination is rolled out across the population; where face to face meetings restart and our u3a gradually gets back to something like normal; and where hugging friends and family is once again something to be treasured. Group Leaders are doing a great job of keeping many of the groups in touch with each other online, so do make the most of any contact with your u3a friends through email/WhatsApp/Zoom and so on. Think about phoning members you know who aren’t online. Do make use of the Third Age Trust website https://u3a.org.uk/  register for some of their events and their national newsletter, and sign up for the u3a Support Forum.
In the meantime our update will continue every week. Many thanks go to Linda Bilsborrow for continuing Kevin Dean’s work and making the update such an enjoyable read. Also to Julie Clarke for her seemingly endless supply of quizzes! If you missed any of the quizzes you can find them on the website, https://sandbachu3a.org.uk/category/events/quizzes/
You can get important information about Covid from the NHS website, www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ or from Cheshire East at https://healthwatchcheshireeast.org.uk/coronavirus/ and https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/council_and_democracy/council_information/coronavirus/coronavirus-covid-19.aspx

Stay safe, and best wishes for this new year.
Stuart Naylor
Chair, Sandbach u3a

National News

Are you still uncertain about how or whether to use Zoom? u3a offers courses for members and group leaders to help learn about this software:
Introduction to Zoom
The aim of this session is to help you become familiar with the basics of how to use the Zoom platform, what you can do on it, some of the functions and how to be safe. This is aimed at novices to gain confidence is using Zoom.
Zoom for Group Leaders
The tutorial will be ideal for interest group leaders looking for help to run their groups online using Zoom.
Zoom for Hosting Group Meetings
The aim is to cover the basics on organising and inviting members to meetings, meeting protocols, managing your group, and showing slides. This is for anyone who runs their own meetings and would like to do so successfully.
Information on how to book – https://www.u3a.org.uk/events/online-events

On a Lighter Note

Paraprosdokians are figures of speech in which the second half of a sentence or phrase is surprising or unexpected and is frequently humorous. (Apparently, Sir Winston Churchill loved them.)

  1. The last thing I want to do is hurt you … but it’s still on my list.
  2. Since light travels faster than sound, some people appear bright until you hear them speak
  3. If I agreed with you, we’d both be wrong.
  4. We never really grow up — we only learn how to act in public.
  5. Knowledge, is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  6. To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism. To steal from many is research.
  7. I didn’t say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you.
  8. In filling out an application, where it says, “In case of an emergency, notify…” I answered “a doctor..”
  9. You do not need a parachute to skydive. You only need a parachute to skydive twice
  10. I used to be indecisive, but now I’m not so sure
  11. To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target.
  12. You’re never too old to learn something stupid