Something that none of us have ever experienced and could never imagine has happened. We are “locked down”. This phrase that only a few days ago we would have mocked as some sort of Hollywood gibberish and is now firmly part of our daily vocabulary, just as selfie and Internet before it came to be. We are locked down, up in a balcony-less fifth floor apartment. On a piece of paper we have a list of games and activities to keep the kids entertained which we add to whenever we think of a new one. The infant has tried his best to destroy the list on a number of occasions but so far it has been rescued every time.
At set times over the last couple of evenings, the windows in the residential blocks have opened and the residents have lent out and clapped and clapped. We have clapped too. Apparently we are clapping to show our appreciation for the emergency services: the medical staff who have got our backs for as long as there is room in the intensive care units. And also simply to show each other that we are all still here and still alive. It is both an uplifting and eerie experience because it feels like there should be a parade below, but the streets are completely empty save the odd dog walker. Dog walkers are exempt from the ban for the duration of their walk, which of course they slow down as much as they can: A sidra cork up the dogs arse to prevent defecation, legs hobbled with fishing line, that sort of thing. Exempt too are those who are shopping for food, medicine, and cash money ching ching.
During these times, in-house stress levels are fluctuating. We each take it in turns to melt down in our own ways. The selfish infant, too young to understand turn taking, really takes the piss and has multiple meltdowns completely out of sequence.
My stresses are mainly occupied with the dishwasher and bad dishwasher filling practice and the dishwasher not being filled at bedtime practice and poor dishwasher dish washing practice due to the use of the eco liquid we bought before all this kicked off.
“Harry.” My wife earnestly began as I was leaving our bathroom. “You really must write your blog.” I smiled at her because perhaps she was right. Perhaps the people need me to keep going, keep writing – but then she put the vibrating neon pink face-cleaner-thing against her soapy forehead and turned to the mirror, thus negating any serious thing she had to say.
*Later proved to be massively incorrect. Ah, hindsight my smug little friend