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Face it - being rid of masks is a thrill worth lining up for


Sick of spending your time in endless queues? You’ll need to take your place in line, writes Rebecca Levingston

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I took my mind off vaccine queues while I was on holidays last week. Instead, I went to multiple theme parks to wait in another type of queue along with most of Queensland. Oh, how I loathe standing in a line.

Perhaps I should be a little more pandemic zen about the chance to pause and reflect on the world around me? Nah, I just fought the urge to tell my fellow linesman that a mask worn around your neck doesn’t work.

As someone said to me this week, imagine your mask is a pair of undies and your nose is another pointy appendage – not pulling your pants up is pointless.

Up until last weekend I’d been fortunate enough to avoid any COVID testing queues. Then I flew to Townsville and came calamitously close to someone who did have coronavirus. It feels like a long wait overnight for a negative result.

Kudos to whoever is testing those swabs every time there’s a lockdown. Wonder how many more times during outbreaks people will turn out in their thousands to get tested? Line ups for swabs and jabs might be the enduring images of 2021.

Not everyone has to queue up. This week, tension rose between rugby league and regular citizens who feel like footy players might be getting a free kick when it comes to free movement around the states.

No lineups for them to come and play in the Sunshine State. As the Premier’s slogan says, they’re good to go. Plenty of punters have pointed out that not being able to visit a loved one in difficult circumstances is a loss when others seem to win.

I did feel like a winner when I received my second dose of the Pfizer vaccine. I was astonished there was not a single person ahead of me in that queue.

I walked straight in at my appointment time, sat down and got the jab. Amazing. If only every doctor visit was like that. Speedy, almost painless and no supply issues evident.

While you’re checking the national medicine cabinet, did former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd bump us up in the global vaccine queue?

For a country that dislikes queue jumpers, even in desperate circumstances, it’s still not clear where the real and virtual line up starts or ends.

I will avoid queues whenever I can. Long before social distancing made it awkward, I remember seeing a fancy foodie place in the city where people would queue for sushi.

Not me. No nori roll is worth the wait. Last Saturday night I saw people lined up for gelato. No thanks. No lick is worth a line.

Buy it is astonishing how long people will wait for a thrill.

Yes, back to the theme park where my family walked into a “world” to encounter a two hour wait for a rollercoaster. Wait – sorry – that was the virtual queue. Physically standing in line was closer to 60 minutes before you could climb on, strap in and scream.

Remember this time last year when Japanese authorities asked thrill seekers to “please scream inside your heart”

Next time you see someone flouting the COVID rules give it a try.

And for those who’ve been masked up in Queensland for the last few weeks, enjoy removing your mask this Friday.

Spare a thought for our friends in New South Wales whose next ride looks long and scary, where some get sick and others get turned upside down.

We’d better strap in for more highs and lows during this pandemic rollercoaster. Even though most of us are ready to hop off.


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