• Lara

Life in the time of Corona

Week One


So how’s your first week been?


I feel alternately like I’m in Shaun of the Dead (with less zombies) or a Game for a Laugh prank (with less Jeremy Beadle).


We had a BBQ last Sunday for Mothers Day. It was a traditional British BBQ because we all had to wear coats, but it meant we could all stand away from Eldest Son, who was the only one still going to work at the time. It was touch and go whether we even had enough gas in the bottle but there was enough for us to not get food poisoning. Turns out people don’t panic-buy burgers and sausages.


Shopping for food is weird isn’t it? We haven’t panic bought anything. I feel guilty for going, and also that people are checking what’s in my basket. One woman’s essential is another’s luxury but I’m sure you’ll agree that gin is definitely essential. See also chocolate. We are lucky living near the centre and can combine our exercise with shopping and the shops are as busy as the big superstores because people can’t park near them.


Youngest Son is currently working from home with us. After the first day which included a ‘Friends’ marathon and several conference calls I created him a home office in the spare room. Currently he has a conference call every day at 9:30am so we know not to go running round in our pyjamas (or worse) at that time of the day. He still watches crap American tv whilst working but at least now we don’t need to watch it too. He emerges into the kitchen at lunch time then disappears again until 4pm.


We have been getting out on our bikes every day, following the distancing advice of course. So glad we are in Norfolk and not London as it’s much flatter here. Thank goodness for the glorious weather we have had this week. Mind you I suppose if it had been horrible we would have minded less about staying home. The first day we went out we saw a lot of people, mainly dog walkers and runners. It tapered off as the week went on, seeing fewer and fewer people out and about.


I have tried to get Him Indoors to join in with my ‘Yoga with Adrienne’ but he says he’s just not that bendy. I pointed out that he might be more bendy if he did join in, but he’s blaming his dodgy knee. My downward dog isn’t much to write home (or to you) about but I do feel better once I’ve

done something. My body type is currently “does yoga but also loves chocolate”… Youngest Son has been going out for a walk after he finishes work every day, although he does insist on looking like a mugger with a Buff over half his face and his hood up.


Now that Eldest Son is working from home that’s all of them safely ensconced in their homes, except for Eldest Step Daughter’s BF. I can’t tell you what he does because then I’d have to shoot you but it’s a key role and he is still going to work. We have a family WhatsApp on which I take a register every morning and they reply with the most imaginative GIF they can find which kind of sets us up for the day.


Mum being as far away as she is is a worry but I am happy I can get provisions to her if necessary and she has neighbours looking out for her too. I did have to talk her down from going to the Post Office (the bloody Post Office!) to post my brother’s birthday card though. I have FaceTimed her but mostly I just see the top of her head so it isn’t very successful. can you imagine doing this 20 years ago? No FaceTime or Zoom or WhatsApp. no on-line shopping. It would have been so much harder then, we are very lucky to have those resources. A video call with one's [adult] children isn't anyone's ideal, but it's definitely better than nothing.


I think we have effectively moved now. We accepted an offer on the house within a week of putting it on the market and it’s all still going through, although even more slowly than usual of course. After watching the news we weren't sure how much freedom of movement there would be around London so we decided to hire a van last Monday and brought a load of personal stuff up here but I think we will have to return in our car this week just to get a few more bits and pieces. I feel so sad that we had to leave this way, I wasn’t looking forward to leaving anyway but to drive away with just a few bits, and without saying goodbye to our friends was hard. We will go back again soon and say goodbye to everyone. We were supposed to be having a big 50/60 birthday party next Saturday which would have meant we could say goodbye to all our friends. They will just have to come and stay here for the weekend instead. When we are all allowed out again. Oh the parties we will have...


We don’t have much of a garden up here, ironically our garden in London was a proper garden and this one is just a courtyard that doesn’t get much sun unless it’s high summer. Last year I potted up several shrubs in a bid to get some greenery out there, but they didn’t thrive and it was a bit of a mystery why, but it turns out that I was killing them with our softened water. So I have managed to rescue a couple of them by repotting them this week and now only watering them with water from the bypass tap. Ian has been out there with a pressure washer too (something for him to do) but I don’t expect Monty Don will be visiting any time soon. I did order some dahlias and lilies yesterday. I hope to sit in my garden in a few months and every time I look at them I will remember that they were planted in the darkest of times but they still flourished.


Anyway I’m pretty sure the sun is over the yard-arm (if not my garden fence yet) so I’m off for a G&T. I can’t even begin to imagine what life would be like if there were an alcohol shortage.


Stay safe and well everyone. And most importantly, stay home




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