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Overthinking the rules?

This lockdown is already getting to me. Despite not being entirely squeaky clean on the Covid law-abiding front (no halo polishing here and in fact quite a lot of self-disappointment), I do want to adhere to all the rules right now in order to do my bit. I am finding it a little confusing though and think I may be overreacting.

We must stay at home and not go out unless it is for an essential reason. One of those reasons is to shop for food – straightforward and clear, and I am trying to go as infrequently as possible. Once a week is quite easy to achieve for us. All good.

Another reason is to take exercise. This has to be local. I reckon if I am going on foot then I am local, right? But I have some nervousness (paranoia?) that the police will not believe me when I am on the far side of the Park and tell them I have walked from home. Mind you, maybe they’ll take one look at my knackered footwear and mud-spattered trousers and agree. And honestly, are the police really going to swoop on Richmond Park and ‘raid’ us middle-class leafy-borough-dwellers? Common sense says no, but there are so many celebs in the northern part of the Park I guess it would make a fantastic hunting ground to expose one of them. Or maybe that would be too much like courting social-media outrage when a much-loved star is outed for driving just that little bit too far to take their exercise. 

I met a friend in the Park the other day. I walked to our meeting point (well, in fact, I almost ran because I left it just a tiny bit late to set off – good for the calorie burning I suppose even if it was inadvertent) and she cycled. She bought us coffees from a kiosk and we walked side by side (not close) chatting for about an hour before going our separate ways home. I later saw a news feature about two women being fined for doing something similar in the Peak District. Perhaps the fact they had driven there was the key difference, but it made me nervous that I had contravened some nuance of the rules. Maybe the coffee was indeed a picnic? Overthinking now, for sure!

Incidentally, whilst on our walk, we shared our amusement that people miss hugging.  We are both ladies for whom the requirement not to greet others with a hug or kiss or similar has simply brought a reassuring release from the need to decide what exactly to do on approaching a friend. A curt nod and a bit of a smile? Fine by us, thanks. Always a silver lining!


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