Neil Gaiman, the Good Omens and American Gods writer, has apologized after breaking Scottish lockdown rules by traveling from New Zealand to his home in Skye, Scotland, at the height of the coronavirus pandemic.
In a blog on his website last week, Gaiman revealed he made the 11,000-mile trip more than two weeks ago so he and his wife, Amanda Palmer, could give each other some space and he could work in the British timezone.
His confession created headline news in the UK and in a new blog post on Monday, the writer said he had been visited by police to discuss his movements, which involved flying into London and using a friend’s car to journey to Scotland.
“I did something stupid. I’m really sorry,” Gaiman said. “I got to chat to some local police officers yesterday, who said all things considered I should have stayed where I was safe in New Zealand, and I agreed that yes, all things considered, I should.”
Gaiman said he “panicked” after reading travel advice on the UK government website, which states that people “are strongly advised to return now” if they are stranded overseas. “I waited until New Zealand was done with its strict lockdown, and took the first flight out,” he added.
Police Scotland inspector Lynda Allan confirmed that Gaiman was spoken to. “Officers have visited Neil Gaiman and spoken to him about his actions. He has been given suitable advice about essential travel and reminded about the current guidelines in Scotland,” she said.
Gaiman also apologized specifically to the people of Skye. He said: “I want to apologize to everyone on the island for creating such a fuss. I also want to thank and apologise to the local police, who had better things to do than check up on me. I’m sure I’ve done sillier things in my life, but this is the most foolish thing I’ve done in quite a while.”
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