As it stands, this is the UK’s final week of official lockdown. NHS workers are still risking their lives everyday. More and more nurses are dying from the virus as the campaign to give NHS staff more protective equipment intensifies. Stockpiling of products in supermarkets seems to have decreased slightly but still people are queuing to enter shops to buy food.
Boris Johnson has gone into hospital with persistent coronavirus symptoms as people continue to call on the government for support and guidance. The number of deaths is still rising and the pandemic continues to plague the UK and the world.
Day Fifteen: Sunday 5th April
The start of our final week of official lockdown and hopefully the end is near, soon we can all return to normal. Today was the day it was announced that the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, had been admitted to a hospital in London with persistent symptoms of coronavirus. People soon began panicking more, we no longer had our Parliamentary leader guiding us because he too, had contracted the very virus that the world is battling.
Tomorrow is my mums birthday and needless to say, this wasn’t how we were planning on celebrating it but we prepared to make it as special as we possibly could. My boyfriend and I took a walk to a supermarket, making sure to stay two metres away from anyone else in the street. We queued for the supermarket separately, and bought her cards and ingredients for the dinner we were planning to cook her.
We ended the day in a significant way. Queen Elizabeth II addressed her nation which was broadcast on television and watched by millions. This marks the fifth time the Queen has ever addressed the nation, the last time was her Diamond Jubilee back in 2012. She thanked front line staff at the NHS, carers and others carrying out essential roles in the midst of the pandemic. She also called for unity in the country in a message of hope intending to raise morale. She went on to explain that this challenging time reminded her of her first ever broadcast in 1940, during World War II.
The Queen’s address marks the increasing severity of the situation. With no active Prime Minister currently, the country has turned to their monarch for guidance. She reiterated the need for unity, and for us to stick together. I just hope people will listen.
Day Sixteen: Monday 6th April
My Mum’s birthday. I woke up early and went into my parents room to give her her card and present. She seemed in low spirits already, her previous birthday plans have had to be cancelled or postponed because of the current situation. I, along with everyone else in the house, made it our mission to keep her in the best possible mood and try and keep the day special.
We did everything for her around the house so she didn’t have to lift a finger, made sure she was comfortable and happy and made sure to give her as much attention and affection as we could. She received birthday messages and phone calls from friends and family but she still seemed down. My dad decided to take her out for a drive over to my grandparents, to get some fresh air and deliver some supplies to them.
My boyfriend and I used this time alone to bake her a birthday cake, since we had been unable to buy one from the supermarket. It was a lot more of a personal touch and we knew we could do a good job. Gathering the baking equipment, we made a vanilla and chocolate sponge cake. To ice it, we made fresh cream and added a slight bit of cocoa powder to it and grated a chocolate bar on top for extra decoration. With some finishing touches and some birthday candles we gave Mum her cake and it lifted her mood instantly. We ended the day all on the sofa watching the second half of her favourite film. Maybe not the birthday she wanted but it was the best birthday we could give her.
Day Seventeen: Tuesday 7th April
We woke up to the news that Prime Minister Boris Johnson had been moved to an intensive care unit (ICU) after being struck down with coronavirus earlier in the week. This was to give him 24 hour care and quick access to a ventilator in case he struggle to breathe. I thought maybe the government may announce today that the lockdown was being extended and use the PM’s condition as an example to take this virus seriously.
Despite all our best efforts, there are still people going outside, spending time with friends, going to parks, beaches and other things which are restricted. These are people who aren’t listening or are choosing not to follow government advice. Seeing these people from the windows of my house or on social media makes my blood boil. Especially when myself and everyone I know are isolating from their loved ones in an effort to make sure we’re all safe and healthy.
I played scrabble with my boyfriend and won my first ever game. That was the only activity we did today. I’m finding it harder and harder to fill my day with things to do and to keep myself busy. The days are starting to merge into one and blur together as we’re in the same routine. A routine we will stay in until all this is over.
Day Eighteen: Wednesday 8th April
The weather was slowly becoming warmer, we took advantage of the nice weather and spent more time in the garden. Warm weather meant we could get fresh air and be outside in the safety of our own homes without violating any restrictions and regulations of the lockdown.
My dad and my boyfriend spent the day tidying up the garden, planting seeds, watering plants and knocking down our old shed. We planned to use the bits of wood for our chimenea. Whilst the weather was good we thought maybe it’d be nice to have a small fire and sit outside in the garden one night, away from all the news.
I’m losing track of what day of the week it is at this point. My sense of time is non-existent and every day feels the same, no variation or excitement. Every day is the same as yesterday and the day before that. I feel more hopeless today than I have during the rest of my time in quarantine. I have absolutely no idea when things will go back to normal again. I think our journey back to normality will be a gradual one, rather than things going back to how it was instantly, it will be a slow and steady process. A process that I’ll have to try and be patient with.
Day Nineteen: Thursday 9th April
I woke up to another day of warm weather. I got ready for my day and proceeded to help my mum hang the washing outside. We’d all taken to cleaning something once a day to try and pass a bit of time. My parents have begun going for small walks in the morning to get their daily exercise in before they began their day.
My boyfriend decided that he hated his hair and with no idea when he’ll next be able to have a professional haircut, he resorted to shaving his head. And so, with scissors and clippers, my dad and I helped him shave his head. Desperate times call for desperate measures and he joins a growing minority of men shaving their hair off after being unable to cope without a haircut. I’m still getting used to seeing him without hair but it will grow back healthier.
Still no announcement of the lockdown being extended and this shows, I see more and more people going outside and more cars on the road everyday. People are starting to relax and right now, I’m not sure if that’s a good or a bad thing.
Day Twenty: Friday 10th April
The start of the Easter Bank Holiday and no doubt, usually a time filled with happiness, smiles and spending time with family. The weather was, for once, extremely warm. Sun shining everywhere and the promise of a warm Spring filled the air. Perfect weather for people to become tempted to go outside and sunbathe. Sure enough, looking out my window, I saw people walking about as if the pandemic wasn’t still happening.
Today the UK recorded 980 deaths, this is the highest recorded daily death toll in Europe, surpassing Italy and Spain. It seems we’re currently reaching the peak of the virus in the UK as our government warns people to stay home during the Easter weekend.
Friday evening was spent with a takeaway that was delivered to us safely, and spending the night sat by the chimenea and chatting around the warm fire. A few helicopters lurked around the area which we suspected were police keeping an eye out for any large gatherings or parties but aside from that all was peaceful. A perfect Spring evening if it wasn’t for everything else around us.
Day Twenty-One: Saturday 11th April
Today was the day we were expecting the lockdown to be extended, the weather was still lovely and more and more people were relaxing with the rules. Both of my parents are now furloughed rather than working from home so we spent the day in our garden in the sun. We had finished all the jobs in the garden and in the house for the time being and we were all feeling bored and a bit low.
Dong the same old routine every single day gets to everyone eventually. I wonder how we’ll all cope when we have to switch back to our old routines. Some of us crave it, it’s the consistency of normality that they need. Whilst others fear it, they think it won’t ever really be the same. One way or another however we look at it, coronavirus has certainly left it’s mark on the world.