Thursday 26 March 2020

Before Staying Home

I wasn't sure how I should open this post. Nothing that I can say seems appropriate at the moment but I hope you are well and are finding a way through these troubling times. Life has changed for all of us, for some in the worst possible way, and so to those still working and providing vital services I cannot find the words to explain just how much it is appreciated. Thank you.

As expected, school closed last Friday for the foreseeable future, so for the moment we are learning at home. School had already prepared for this outcome, so we have learning packs and online resources at our disposal and for now, at least, I have a willing pupil. How long this will last, however, I'm not so sure. Zumba classes in the living room have become a thing and, no, they have nothing to do with me - Lily likes to freestyle! Fortunately, she appears unconcerned by recent events and I hope that continues to be so. Her only disappointment right now is not being able to go swimming.

On my last visit to the supermarket I was reassured to see most of the shelves had returned to having almost normal stock levels. The panic buying of the previous two weeks seems to have calmed down now, although I still haven't been able to buy flour, not even from the farm shop. I'm missing being able to bake (not a real problem, I know) and although I have a small amount remaining in the kitchen cupboard, I am going to keep it for a real baking emergency. Thank goodness Lily loves flapjack.

Before the official lockdown, we went for a walk up Steel Fell. I had been wanting to walk it since climbing the nearby Helm Crag earlier in the year but the weather hadn't co-operated. Again, I wasn't sure, even on the morning we set off. There had been conflicting social distancing advice and I would never put myself or anyone else at unnecessary risk, but with the possibility of a week at work ahead of me and the knowledge that Steel Fell is one of the quietest fells in the Lakes, we set off. And what a glorious day for it. Fresh air and the most beautiful blue sky. We could see for miles and, if it was even possible, under our present circumstances I appreciated it all the more.

Life is undoubtedly different for us all right now but in amongst the uncertainty I have been heartened by acts of kindness and people reaching out to one another. The words social distancing are in daily use but I don't know about you, thanks to the wonder of technology I have been in touch with friends more than ever and I hope it continues to be this way once we are over the worst.

Conversations will not be cancelled.
Relationships will not be cancelled.
Love will not be cancelled.
Songs will not be cancelled.
Reading will not be cancelled.
Self-care will not be cancelled.
Hope will not be cancelled.
May we lean into the good stuff that remains.
– Jamie Tworkowski

Stay well.
J. X