Lucas van Leyden – an artist late in 1400s, anticipating the Coronavirus this century, painted this depiction of ‘Life in Lockdown’, and it bears a strong resemblance to Con, Rona and I this last week.
We’ve run out of ideas for entertainment and are just playing cards. As you would expect, Con is cheating and Rona has yet to master the elemental ideas of the game, but it’s passing the time.
Yesterday at 4pm, our prime minister announced ‘Just one more week’ and we could all move to level 3, which will look a lot like level 4 but with more classrooms open and more coffee available for pick up. Well, she said more than that, but the gist is ‘stay at home unless you are an essential worker or can find a way to get your small business operating safely.’ I’m happy with that.
It’s still a very strange feeling and occasionally as I sit on the couch watching the news again, I wonder when I’m going to wake up and find it was all a rather bizarre dream. I think it’s going to take a long while to realise that we are all very much awake but life is not as we have known it. For me, it has been relatively easy. I’ve still got my job at the University, and my flatmate has his own job too. I’ve been able to work from home, and catch up on a lot of things I enjoy doing, or needed to do. Friends and family have had it much harder, some estranged from beloved children who have just become parents, and struggling to deal with the keeping a distance thing. Others who have been made redundant and wonder what is next. I know some who’ve had the virus and – hopefully – have made a good recovery. I’m certainly not complaining about my lot.
There have been some positives in all this, not the least being how more consciously kind people have been to each other. That has been noticeable in the local community on walks and in the posts on the FB page. We got a huge avocado left in our letterbox by a neighbour yesterday. I get the sense that we will not take things so much for granted as we did once. Those service industries that are so essential (nurses, teachers come to mind), who have for years received less pay than the private sector are now the focus of our love and attention. They really DO deserve the pay increases they have asked for. Rubbish collectors, cleaners, dairy owners, supermarket workers . . . all of these less glamorous jobs at last receiving gratitude from a nation that needs them.
Anyway, the hours tick by with a certain swing to them, and I am surprised to find it the end of another day and have to dig deeper to remember which day of the week it is.
This was meant to be a funny post, but it’s gone all contemplative. (I must write them when I first wake up.)
The highlight to look forward to tomorrow is a trip to the supermarket! Yes, it’s been a week and we’re almost out of milk. Will I go by foot, bike or car? The choices the choices. Until next time then . . . stay safe, stay calm, be kind.