The good side is I was told if you sing 'Happy Birthday' twice, well then that equates to the correct amount of time to be spent handwashing.
o there I was singing out loud. Just to be on the safe side, I gave a blast of 'For He's a Jolly Good Fella' after the double birthday tribute. The man who wandered in to the Gents at Thurles racecourse when I was washing away the faded rings on my fingerprints galloped out the door with the fright.
Thurles was the only race meeting to be held in Ireland and England and possibly the only one in Europe, unless the Cossacks held a flapper for the fun of it on the Steppes.
The cold north wind blew down from Russia and chilled the rain. Fit jockeys without any fatty insulation shivered. They sat more than two metres apart in the lonesome stands.
There was no whispering. Racing people are always whispering. They might be out in the middle of the Curragh with no one within a whinny and there they'd be whispering about stallions, strokes and useless yokes.
Down below us on the track, jockey Ricky Doyle was running with Millie. Ricky was trying to lose a pound or two. Corona closed down the communal racecourse sauna. Millie's short legs worked overtime to keep up with Ricky. Millie the Jack Russell, or should it be the Jackie Russell, was well wrapped up in a dog's blanket.
But there was warmth there in Thurles on the day when spectators could only look over the wall like GAA lads who are too mean or too broke to pay in. Thurles is the only privately owned and run racecourse in Ireland. The Molony family have been managing Thurles for five generations. Saturday would have been one of their biggest days of the year. Kate Molony, the manager, was friendly, warm and relaxed. There was pressure for sure.
ITV in England, and Virgin Media here at home, showed five races. The eyes of the equine world were on Thurles and Irish racing.
The race meeting was well run and the few who were there were only present because it was their job. They kept lengths apart. I snooped and spied. The decision by Horse Racing Ireland (HRI) to allow the meeting to go ahead was fully justified.
The only closeness I saw was when Millie snuggled up after Ricky's mount Fourina was passed close to the finish.
I know how tough it is to have to close down. It's all about risk assessment. There is far more danger abroad in the wide world.
A middle-aged man came up to me at a rural petrol pump on my way to the races and he said: "It's you isn't it?"
I ran back and told him to stay away but he kept on coming. He was in my face. I got thick with him. The brave girl at the shop counter who is doing her bit for Ireland, unheralded and unsung like so many more, told me the stalker's wife had cancer. We are still not taking this virus seriously enough.
But I do believe racing should be allowed to continue for the immediate future. I was approached by someone in Thurles who said, "Please don't write anything bad".
The consensus now among racing people is that Cheltenham should have been run behind closed doors. Let us give thanks for our leader's good sense. Boris Johnson has none.
I didn't write anything bad about Thurles, because there was nothing bad to write. This is no time for plugs.
There are many thousands who make their living from horse racing. The sport is labour-intensive and we are the best racing country in the world. Usually when we're observed to be the best, the words 'per capita' are added on.
In racing, we are the best in the world, full stop. I would not suggest for a second that racing should go on if there was a danger to our country. But millions of euro have been paid out in the industry that will be spent in the economy. Millions more will be paid in tax and levies. The savings can be readily given to those who need an income boost.
The Pierce Molony Memorial Novice Chase was named in honour of the man who ran this track for many years.
Pierce passed away about five years ago. His wife Riona asked her girls to "bring Daddy down". The framed photograph of Pierce was there for all to see on the window of the weigh-room.
Davy Russell was sitting in his Jeep just opposite. We were well apart but I heard him talking to his wife about banana bread and apple crumble.
"People are gone mad on baking to kill the time," said Davy. "I'll be 20 stone weight if the baking keeps on going."
Then one of our best ever jockeys turned serious. "I think we are doing the right thing by racing. I honestly do."
Fifteen minutes later, Davy was shaken in a fall from Dallas Des Pictons in the Pierce Molony. He was stood down for the rest of the day. That's racing. Davy sent a picture just now. He can't be that bad. There was a photograph of a lovely bowl of apple crumble and you could float a Youghal trawler on the custard.
Riona Molony was in the parade ring with her daughters Kate, Anne Marie, Trish and Helen. There was a silent tribute for their dad's cousin Pierce Duggan who passed away a few weeks ago. Pierce manned a turnstile in Thurles racecourse for 22 years and did his bit for the redevelopment of Semple Stadium.
The Molonys formed a circle there in the Thurles parade ring before Pierce's race. Riona and her daughters obeyed the rules. The Molony girls kept more than two metres apart but the circle remained unbroken.