Chief takes swab for team

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All over . . . Apart from my right eye being a bit watery, I've survived Covid-19 testing without embarrassing myself in front of a colleague. Phew! PHOTO: CHRIS TOBIN

In the absence of any other willing volunteers in The Courier office, chief reporter Claire Allison took one for the team and went along to have a Covid-19 test to find out what it was like.

On Friday, it seemed like a great idea.

Go along to the Covid-19 testing station to be the “model” for photographs of the testing process.

They could mock it up for the photos, but I decided it made more sense to do the actual test, and then I could write about what it was like.

By Monday, I was wondering just what I was thinking.

But knowing I’d never live it down if I chickened out, I rolled up in the Courier car to the testing station on Butler St.

Sitting in the car, I’m met by one of the staff in full protective equipment, handed an information leaflet about the rules I have to follow after having the test, and given the now-familiar squirt of hand sanitiser.

Not so familiar is the mask I’m to put on I’m already feeling a bit hot and sticky, and have a new-found admiration for people who have to wear them all day.

It’s getting real . . . I’m handed tissues to give my nose a good blow before getting the test. PHOTO: CHRIS TOBIN

I’m given tissues to give my nose a good blow, and I leave the mask pulled down below my nose for the main event – the swab.

I know a few people who have previously had the test. None have been particularly enthusiastic about the process, so I’m getting a bit nervous now about what it’s going to feel like and how long it will take.

So when I’m instructed to lean my head back against the headrest, close my eyes (already firmly squeezed shut) and either clasp my hands together or hold the steering wheel point of view, to ensure I keep my hands to myself to comply, and am gripping the wheel tightly while a swab is inserted up my right nostril.

Up it goes . . . The swab slides into my nostril. Looking at this photo, and hearing Chris’s description of what it looked like, I’m glad I had my eyes closed. PHOTO: CHRIS TOBIN

There’s a mild burning sensation, and my right eye is watering a bit, and then it’s done. My verdict? Slightly unpleasant, but over very quickly. If you need to get tested, don’t stress about it.