A year of lockdowns

Yesterday, 23 March 2021, marked the first anniversary of the first lockdown in the UK. I am still unsure if the last 12 months have been long or short. It feels one way or the other depending on my mood, perhaps both. The everyday mundaneness has turned into a blurry continuity and I have lost sense of time.

A year ago I had no idea that we would be in this situation now, indeed I could not have imagined any situation for that matter, because there was so much that we didn’t know. Fear or something akin to it was probably the strongest sensation I felt then. Not knowing what you are dealing with often induces fear. Now it is boredom. Over the past year, we have learnt more about the virus, and while there is still a lot of uncertainty, there seems a reasonably good way out through vaccination.

I am fortunate that the worst that could be said of the pandemic is the monotonous passage of tedious time. I have not lost my life, I have not lost someone very close, I have not lost educational opportunities. Many have suffered grievously and unimaginably.

Recently Google Photos showed me images from a year ago, and it was interesting to see how much things have changed or how the society has adapted to the situation. The photographs reminded me that I was running out of toilet paper and there was none to be had in the supermarkets nearby. By late March 2020, many things were running out, including fresh fruit and veg, as the images below illustrate. For some reason, red onions, melons, and mangoes were still available.

Looking back, what was all that panic buying about?