Friday 20 March 2020

Covid-19 Diaries - Lockdown Day 6

I almost didn't write a blog post this evening. I thought, it's Friday night, who's going to read it? Everyone will be out.


Anyway, I decided it's time you all knew the truth behind the panic buying of toilet rolls.

It was the mums. Yep. They could see into the future and they knew those empty toilet rolls would be worth their weight in gold during lockdown. Because if you stick an empty toilet roll onto the wall, just maybe you'll be able to distract a toddler for a while as they drop things through it. If you're really lucky, they could spend a whole ten minutes dropping a pen lid through the hole over and over while you make lunch.

I wasn't lucky but another mum was. Despite my husband's engineering of three toilet rolls and an egg box, Sol showed little interest. Still, there were other successes during the day. 

We looked at a millipede for quite some time. I used to ignore them, even dislike them when I saw them on the walls and ceiling of the communal area in the block of flats. But since confinement every living thing is precious. I even toy with the idea of leaving food out and seeing what arrives. "A colony of ants, probably," my friend says, "but I guess that could be fun to watch?"

Signs of life are so important. Perhaps there are relationships which were dying which now might receive the attention they need to flourish again. There is a woman I've been worrying about who I finally contacted today. A few months ago she'd had to leave her twelve year old daughter with her father behind for quite some time so she could look after her dying mother in Latin America. On her return she found her husband had been letting her out to places far too mature for her years and her innocent daughter had turned into an unrecognisable and angry young woman who told her she wished she had never come back. Home had become a hostile environment.

She replied to my message of concern to tell me that thanks to the lockdown she was recovering the time she had lost with her daughter and  that she was happy because their relationship was healing.  

I'll end with a clap. El Aplauso.  It happens every evening in Spain. At 8pm everyone goes outside or opens their windows and claps in gratitude to the medical staff. Usually I'm putting Sol to sleep, but tonight I was free so I stepped out onto the terrace at 7.59 and I clapped. In the distance, I could hear faint clapping and cheering. I clapped even though our neighbourhood was deathly quiet. I clapped for all of us united in this strange new existence working it out one moment at a time.  

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