Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Diary of Covid-19 confinement, day eight

French Village Diaries covid-19 confinement day eight
An isolated dog walk

Welcome to the club, UK

I started this daily update as we found ourselves in an unusual situation. China seemed so far away and although Italy and Spain were a few days ahead of us here in France, for most of the English-speaking world it was difficult to comprehend what living in lockdown meant. 

Writing about our daily life here is giving me something to do, as well as a record to look back on in years to come, but also as with any form of journaling, it is a way of focusing my thoughts and helping me come to terms with the changes that have been rapidly imposed on our lives. With the UK being the latest country to impose lockdown, how quickly the unusual has become normality for so many of us. 
French Village Diaries covid-19 confinement day eight
Official rules regarding going out to exercise in France:
No more than one hour, once a day
No further than 1km from home
Individual activities only
Walking with those you are in confinement with
Walking your pets

I think we were all a little guilty to begin with of creating our own understanding of the rules, especially as things are changing so fast our minds are taking a while to catch up with what is happening. I envisaged using my bike a few times a week to pop into Chef-Boutonne, 7kms from here, to do a bit of essential shopping or pick up a prescription for a neighbour, and at the same time enjoy being out in the fresh air. 

It doesn’t work like that. Staying safe means staying in. 

I have done one essential shop in the last week, but alone and by car, and although we could do with some more fresh fruit and vegetables soon, I am no longer in any rush to leave the safety of home. The sooner everyone stops trying to find a way around the rules and stays in, and away from others, the better, for everyone.

I am once more counting my blessings that we have outdoor space where we can enjoy fresh air and where there is always something that needs doing. I am also thankful that Ed is old enough to understand the situation and can occupy himself without my constant supervision. My day to day life is easy, I am lucky; single parents, at home with little ones and no garden, must be feeling overwhelmed and very isolated. One positive that does seem to have come from this bizarre situation is the online resources that are available. From free exercise sessions to museum tours, choirs, concerts and courses, there is something out there for everyone to try something new. Ed is working on his music theory, Adrian is improving his French, his mum has signed up for a history of royal fashion course and I’m on the verge of diving into an online writing course, when I can find the time.

French Village Diaries covid-19 confinement day eight
The first courgette seedling

Light at the end of the tunnel

On day two of our lockdown, Ed and I started seed sowing for this year’s potager crops and this morning, a mere six days later, the first little courgette seedling poked its head above the soil. This is all the proof I needed that life will go on and the fact that I am one step closer to having a courgette harvest this summer, put a huge smile on my face.

I also had a message from a friend who I haven’t seen in person for over fifteen years. She said she used yesterday’s blog as reading practice with her nine-year-old. It is messages like that, that keep me going. 

Thank you to everyone who has commented, liked and shared these posts. 

Stay indoors and stay safe.

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