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Lockdown 2.0

It’s started cold and misty outside today – a typical November morning. It has been sunny and crisp this afternoon, just as it should be.

And yet, how different it is this year from last. 

In November 2019, I was quite recently back from Croatia and still pretty pleased with myself for having quit my job. My seasonal annoyance at the early onset of Christmas was tempered by the knowledge that I had plenty of time to ignore the endless retail plugging of all things festive by doing other things. Although I didn’t know it at the time, I would in fact embrace the Christmas spirit in my next expedition, to a German Christmas market in Hamburg in early December 2019. Fond memories.

There will be none of this gallivanting in November 2020. We’ve managed a trip to Wisley (Royal Horticultural Society garden nearby) to see foliage last week, and I was outdoors in beautiful sunshine yesterday for a socially-distanced car-park chat by the river in Walton (as part of a lockdown project in fact. More of this another day perhaps.) But otherwise, there is no prospect of travelling anywhere remotely exotic or exciting. I have a trip to the dentist scheduled – I had rather hoped they would be closed, but not so apparently.

It is not so much the deprivation, or the lack of freedom to go to theatres or shops or meet people. I’m lucky in that respect and it is no real hardship to me.

It is the not knowing what’s going to happen longer term. And the worrying about the younger generation and friends/family who may not be as fortunate as me. The economy etc. Things I can do very little about.

However … it was glorious in Richmond Park this afternoon. So good that I had to stop French and Saunders Titting About* for a bit so I could take a few snaps and properly appreciate it all.


*podcast free on Audible. Highly recommend.

Lockdown of the azaleas

Isabella Plantation, the beautiful garden in the middle of Richmond Park, is currently closed to the public due to the Coronavirus and social distancing measures.

I walked around the Plantation perimeter today. Outside, of course. There were very few other people there. It was a hot afternoon and it is quite a distance from any of the park gates. Peering through the fences, I caught glimpses of carpets of bluebells and banks of proudly blooming azaleas. No-one around to appreciate them, these plants were still merrily ‘doing it for themselves’.

And, briefly and distantly, for me.

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