Mother’s Day How a na­tion found new ways to pay trib­ute

The Guardian - - News | Coronaviru­s - Josh Hal­l­i­day

It was a Mother’s Day un­like any other. There were to be no hugs, kisses or even a cuppa as Bri­tons were told not to visit loved ones. But in the grip of the coron­avirus the UK came up with in­no­va­tive ways around so­cial dis­tanc­ing. Some left cards and presents at the doorstep; oth­ers turned to FaceTime to catch up with their fam­i­lies.

Pamela Foulis, 56, went one step further. The hair­dresser, from Dun­fermline, recre­ated a scene from her favourite film, Love Ac­tu­ally, when she sur­prised her 83-year-old mother in Ed­in­burgh. To the sound of Wet Wet Wet’s Love Is All Around, Foulis spelled out a mes­sage to her mother, He­len Mur­phy, from the end of her drive.

Dis­played on one card at a time, the mes­sage be­gan: “We all wish we could give you a hug and a kiss … But due to the virus, we will just give that a miss … sorry we aren’t out eat­ing, drink­ing and hav­ing fun … but hope­fully by next year this will all be over and done.”

A video taken by Foulis’s daugh­ter Lily had been viewed thou­sands of times within a cou­ple of hours of be­ing posted yes­ter­day af­ter­noon.

Foulis said she wanted to do some­thing spe­cial for her par­ents, who are self-iso­lat­ing and wor­ried about the virus. She said: “She was very emotional. I usu­ally see her ev­ery week but I’ve not seen her for a fort­night now. I was try­ing not to cry be­cause I knew it was be­ing videoed and I thought if I start I’ll set my mum off. She was get­ting emotional any­way. I was bit­ing my cheeks.

“I just feel for my mum and dad. They’re get­ting older now and my mum’s re­ally wor­ried so I just thought it would cheer her up.”

Foulis said she had just been told the bar­bers where she works was closing be­cause of the virus, and was on her way to sub­mit her CV to su­per­mar­kets for a part-time job when she spoke to the Guardian.

As the UK faced its first week­end be­hind closed doors, many turned to video-call­ing apps such as FaceTime, Housep­a­rty and Zoom to mark Mother’s Day or to share a Satur­day night in.

The celebrity chef Gor­don Ramsay shared a video mes­sage to his mother as part of ITV’s Bri­tain Get Talk­ing men­tal health cam­paign, which has re­launched in re­sponse to the out­break.

He said: “So­cial dis­tance, yes, is im­por­tant, but even more im­por­tant is so­cial com­mu­ni­ca­tion – talk­ing. I prom­ise you, we are go­ing to get through this. Please don’t over­cook that beef. I love you. Take care.”

PHO­TO­GRAPH: MARTIN RICK­ETT/PA WIRE

▼ Ben and Isaac talk to their grand­mother as she and her hus­band self-iso­late at home in Knutsford

PHO­TO­GRAPH: JA­COB KING/PA WIRE

▲ Olive Trot­man, 76, re­ceiv­ing a visit from her son Mark, his wife, Denise, and his sis­ter Kelly Pamela Foulis (above right) took in­spi­ra­tion from Love Ac­tu­ally for a trib­ute to her mother, who is self-iso­lat­ing at home

PHO­TO­GRAPH: DO­MINIC LIPINSKI/PA WIRE

▲ Many peo­ple used video mes­sag­ing to get in touch on Mother’s Day. Above, He­len Walters chats to her mother, Gil­lian

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