It’s been a weird time, these last twelve weeks or so. We’re still in lockdown, apparently, but the lid is gradually being lifted on some of the restrictions and the more concerned among the population wait, somewhat apprehensively, hoping there will be no repercussions.
In this post I am in no way making light of the situation we have found ourselves, there are, after all, no upsides to a killer pandemic and my heart goes out to all those who have lost loved ones, or those whose health has been badly affected, and of course I’m in awe of everyone in the NHS and who work as carers, as well as all keyworkers who have been keeping our country going.
For me, however, there have been some perks of lockdown, although I’ll admit it’s taken me this long to manage to come up with ten… some are more serious than others and they’re in no particular order:
- I’m all for comfort; stretchy jeans, flat shoes, Hell, I’ll even go so far as an elasticated waistband. So, being able to discard my bra much earlier in the day than usual has certainly been a perk for me. Once any chance of seeing another person has gone (basically after my dog walk) off it comes. What a relief!
- I can cook with more garlic… no one (other than the one other person in my household) is ever going to be close enough to be offended. Tasty bonus.
- The number of calls telling me I’ve been in an accident, my computer has been sending error messages, that I need life insurance or my loft lagging, is way, way down. To zero. I usually get 6 to 8 cold calls a day. I ignore them but they still happen.
- I’ve found I really am an introvert. It’s official.
- Shops and supermarkets have done a terrific job at feeding the nation and I know they’ve struggled to keep enough stock on the shelves, but I have to say on the few times I’ve had to shop the lack of choice has come as something of a welcome relief. Only one or two different types of pasta, tinned tomatoes, fruit? No problem, decision made.
- I have revelled in the silence. I live within a mile of the A14 and you don’t realise how the hum from that fills the background of every minute of every day. This Spring has been so unbelievably quiet. A one off (hopefully). But with no sound coming from the sky or road traffic the countryside has been filled with birdsong. It’s always been there but it’s never been more noticeable. That first sunny weekend when the population were allowed to venture out further meant the assault on the ears from the motorbikes passing through was quite shocking. It’s amazing how you can get used to changes in a relatively short period of time.
- I’m fortunate to live in an area where air pollution is minimal but I’ve loved seeing those photos taken of cities before and during lockdown. To see the difference to the air quality after such a short period of time is truly inspiring and I’ve heard recently that BP won’t be opening up the oil fields they were expecting to because they suspect the world will be turning to greener fuels at a much increased pace than was previously thought. This can only be a good thing.
- I am not good at keeping up with the housework and a particular anxiety of mine is someone popping in when the place is a mess. It therefore comes as something of a relief that nowadays no one is about to call round unannounced. Ironically, the house has never been cleaner.
- Football. Or rather the lack of it, together with all other sport. In this house this has meant a great many long-standing jobs have been completed along with a decent amount of house maintenance and fresh paint. This has been much appreciated but with football now back on the television I’ll, ahem, leave this one there…
- I’m enjoying the slower pace of life. I have been fortunate (as has my other half) that we’ve both been able to carry on working, at least so far. I did have a few hairy weeks which, along with the initial shock of all that was happening, took some getting through, but since then life has been much quieter. And I rather like it. It’s given me a bit of headspace. I suppose I would usually get some of that on holiday, which is where I should be at the moment, but with that cancelled I’ve turned off a lot of the outside noise in my life to try and free my creative brain. I hope it might be working so watch this space.
So there it is, the ten-point list, and I even managed not to include how much I’ve enjoyed it becoming entirely acceptable to start drinking much earlier in the day than in the old normal.
And I’m adding a special number 11, because I got to go on an outing this week. An actual outing. I went to West Lodge Rural Centre near Desborough with my daughter and grandson. A freedom once taken very much for granted was hugely enjoyed and appreciated by all.
How about you? Have you found any perks of being in lockdown?
Thanks for reading.