Monday 25 January 2021

Let It Snow, Let it Snow, Let It Snow......Please!

So, how are we all doing right now? Another year, another lockdown. I know some people are finding this one harder than the last two and there are a variety of reasons for this. I am not any kind of psychiatrist so I won't even begin to bore you with my thoughts. Your reasons for hating/loving lockdown are your own. I can only speak for myself.

Firstly, let's talk Christmas. Due to the change in tiers just before the holidays, I decided to stay put for Christmas and not venture up north to spend it with my family. I didn't hate it. I wouldn't want to spend Christmas alone every year but I actually might actively arrange to spend it alone again from time to time. It was nice to not have to travel here, there and everywhere during a holiday period for once. I had a couple of weeks to veg out on the sofa, eat chocolate and watch whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, on the TV. This, of course, led us into lockdown 3.0 and a whole new way of being.

It's very strange not being able to do things when you want but it isn't a feeling I completely dislike. It makes you realise what you really think important and what you don't. For instance, as anyone who has ever read this diary will know, I LOVE a trip to Costa or Caffe Nero. BC (before Covid) I would visit a coffee shop 4 or 5 times a week, easily. I can now count on two hands the amount of times I have visited one since March last year and I can count on one hand the amount of times I have eaten in one. I have not missed it and don't intend to return to my old ways once this craziness is over.

What I have been doing, since this third lockdown began, is meet a friend for a socially distanced walk once a week in Selsdon. We go to an independent coffee shop, Planet of the Beans for the most excellent hot chocolate and then wander around the local golf course talking nonsense and getting our prescribed hour of exercise. Yesterday was Sunday and was the best day I've had in a long time. 

Yesterday the snow came to South Croydon. Thick, heavy snow reminiscent of the Beast from the East last seen in 2018. Being a northerner I miss proper snow. My weather app had told me to expect snow so on Sunday morning, as I told the people who follow me on Facebook,  I leapt out of bed with the enthusiasm of a small child but with the body of a middle aged woman and hobbled to the window. Hobbled because my ankles take a while to warm up in the morning nowadays. Alas at that point, 9am, there was no snow. I was due to meet my friend at 11am so I had everything crossed that the weather app wasn't lying to me. It wasn't and at 10am the thick snowflakes began to fall from the sky.

My friend and I met as arranged and picked up our hot chocolates and walked, in the snow, to the golf course. The snow kept coming and created the most incredible winter wonderland.

The thing that made yesterday particularly special was the fact that I had time to go out and enjoy the snow the way I had when I was a child messing about in 3 feet of snow (we got about 2 inches yesterday but it felt like more). Had we not been in a lockdown it would not have even occurred to me to go and make the most of the weather.

If being alive in these most crazy of times has taught me anything, it is that 'things' are unimportant. As they say, "you can't take it with you" and I believe I truly understand this now. Of course I would love to own my own little house and there are 'things' that would make life easier if I had them at my disposal but life is what you make of it not what you acquire along the way. 

The one thing I wish I could do during this lockdown is sing more for myself. I made a few simple resolutions at New Year and most I have stuck to, go for a walk everyday is one I have managed to achieve thus far. Another resolution was to sing for myself at least twice a week. Unfortunately I haven't managed this. I can't sing at home because my neighbour objects to my singing so that leaves my car as a possible place to practice but I haven't done so as yet. 

I also thought about starting a little project whereby I record myself singing in my car and upload those recordings to YouTube. My walking friend and I had been trying to come up with a pithy name for this project. We thought of Car-aoke but  Tesla use that already so I'm thinking I could call it Clair-eoke or In-Car-Tations or Petrol-Head-Voice. Unfortunately I haven't really felt like doing it so the name is irrelevant right now. If anyone can think of one, though, please let me know.

Ooh, before I go, my friend took this picture of me yesterday during the snowstorm (btw the snow was almost completely gone three hours later). I asked him "Do I look like I'm in a catalogue?" "Yes", he replied, "Screwfix".