Life in Lockdown

There is one overriding theme for the next three months: lockdown and its consequences. Home schooling was one of those consequences and, with Duncan still receiving only limited direction from school, we were grateful for any distraction. And so it was that we became followers of Joe Wicks and his daily HIIT workout. Work tended to start around 10am for me as a consequence and, with other interruptions, there was typically time spent catching up in the evenings.

One of those distractions was the weekly shop which, in an attempt to minimise time spent queueing, was often done during the working day. As time went on, the queues got shorter and the shelves started to fill again. The nation had taken to baking and, as a consequence, there was a constant scrabble to ensure we had enough flour and yeast to make our daily loaf. The local pub, no longer able to open for business, was distributing catering supplies though and so, at one point, we had an 8kg bag of flour on the go along with 500g of frozen yeast!

At Easter, we should have been up in York at the JK. Instead, we were at home taking part in the virtual Lockdown Orienteering that was the brainchild of Chris Smithard and co. It kept Duncan and I busy for much of the Bank Holiday weekend, particularly having splashed out on a Catching Features license (which both of us were pretty rubbish at). It must have appeared like fun though as Emma joined in for the next one and they became a regular feature of the next few months.

May is a month for birthdays in our family. It started with mine which was fairly uneventful. Next up was my Dad’s and sadly we had to miss the milestone that was his 90th. Apparently, word got round in his street though and he was treated to a socially-distanced rendition of Happy Birthday on his doorstep! This was also VE day, to which the government had moved the first Bank Holiday. One of our neighbours had proposed a street party which, on a scorchingly hot day, was a lovely way to meet some people on the street that we might never have talked to otherwise. It was such a success that it was repeated on the second Bank Holiday, this time with an ice cream van in attendance!

Emma’s birthday was the last to come. It started with a walk around her friends’ houses to drop off craft supplies (not to mention pick up presents) for a party that then took place on Zoom. There was also another Zoom call, this time with the extended family, for the cutting of her rainbow birthday cake. It felt a bit mean given that none of them would get to sample the cake!

We had some lovely long walks and cycle rides during this period. The New Forest was bursting at the seams but we know it well enough to avoid the tourist traps. We also explored some of the quieter reaches of the Test Valley. Towards the end of June, Emma started to complaining that her foot was hurting after exercise, of which more in a future post.

The lockdown was also starting to ease around this time and, in particular, we were allowed to meet in groups of up to six outside. This meant that Tuesday Night runs could resume. The warm evenings meant that sitting outside sinking a few beers with friends was very pleasant. At the end of the month, we even managed to meet up with Christine’s parents, albeit just for a few hours, with Greenham Common chosen as the rendezvous point. We even managed to persuade Duncan to get his lockdown hair cut!

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