Coronavirus diary - coming to the end of the lockdown in Wales
Tomorrow we come to the end of the "firebreak" lockdown in Wales, two weeks and two days of further restrictions. It has not felt like the first lockdown at all and it is interesting to wonder why. In March it felt as if life had truly gone inside. The roads were empty. The skies were blue and silent. We went nowhere. But the sun shone and spring came tumbling over itself in its rush to blossom and growth. We worked in the garden and took advantage of the fact that, living up here, we always have a full freezer and a well stocked pantry. When Ian went food shopping, as rarely as we could, I waited with bated breath for him to come home. We saw no one.
This time has been only a shadow of that. There was still traffic on the roads. We continued to do some childcare for our locally living daughter. Yoga and Pilates classes which had only recently restarted were suspended again but Zoom meetings for Welsh and Spanish continued. Again we have stayed home and exercised from home but it has not felt too different from the life we have been living for months now. Perhaps we have got used to contact with others online and to the slow pace of life in coronavirus Britain. Cases of covid 19 had been quite high here in Flintshire but they are beginning to come down now, although still high enough to make us cautious in what we do. The greatest difference I think has been the absence of shock. In March it was hard to believe what was happening. We watched the news constantly, I monitored numbers of deaths daily. There was a strong sense of the country coming together in an attempt to combat the virus. Political differences were temporarily laid aside.
Now in November there is no shock, just a weariness and resignation. Normal political battlelines have been redrawn. There is a lack of trust in the UK government and divergent views on how the coronavirus crisis should be handled. Despite that there appears to be a holding up of support for restrictions. Cases in France and Spain are also high. It feels as though across Europe ordinary people are simply putting their heads down and getting on with it, doing their best to look after themselves and their families. Stoicism has replaced shock.
The presidential election in the United States has hogged the headlines for weeks and is still doing so. Biden seems to have won but Trump continues to cry foul, with no evidence for the fraud which he alleges has taken place.
And it is November. I have never been a big fan of November.
But actually November is full of beauty. Apples, these ones generally left for birds, hang like baubles on the little apple tree in the kitchen garden.
We walk up the hill and run down again. Here at home, halfway up, many of the trees are only just losing their leaves but higher on the hill the wind has already taken them. In the morning skeins of mist drift along the valley.
When we walk to Caerwys the woods are unchanged. It is still and quiet. The birds don't sing so much now but if you stop and sit for long enough you will become aware of them darting in and out of bushes, quietly going about their business.
I make a Christmas cake. Who knows how many of us will be able to share it but it will keep if it needs to, or I can send it all over the country in little boxes, like wedding cake!
I decide, in the face of gentle pressure on my waistband, to have a go at time restricted eating, where you leave a longer period between meals so that you eat in a window of eight hours and leave more like sixteen hours when you don't eat, in some of which you are thankfully asleep! Today is the first day of this attempt. I thought I would try to eat between 11.00am and 7pm. I have no idea whether I will keep this up. I like my breakfast and if I am honest I am doing it partly for something different to do! I am not a great fan of routine and my life has become very routine in 2020. This morning I did manage to go to 11.45 before having a breakfast/lunch of eggs. We will see. I am regarding it as an experiment!
And this coming week as restrictions lift we are hoping to see our older daughter and her family in South Wales. Travel outside Wales is discouraged still but they at last are within reach, if we bubble with them which we shall. I am so looking forward to seeing them!
How are you? If you are in England what are your plans for lockdown? And if you are elsewhere are you finding ways to have things to look forward to?