So this morning we were awake early and watching a squirrel lazily sun himself in the field - binoculars filled in the detail, my eyes aren't that good. We had had the usual debate as to what the 'creature' was we could see in the distance - I am getting more worried by the day that for a child brought up in the English countryside, our son has excitable ideas about what our wildlife looks like... But, like everything else at the moment, it isn't until things are brought in to sharp focus that we really appreciate the detail...
Which brings me on to this evening - we were told that our Prime Minister would be addressing the nation at 8.30pm. We all gathered to watch, even our son voluntarily came off the Xbox and told his friends to do the same. I think he felt they had asked him so many questions about the crisis that it would be good if they all watched it then could all talk about it.
It's official then, we are on lockdown, at least I think we are.
It seems that so many of our fellow countrymen have been faffing about feeling the current situation doesn't apply to them, that they can freely congregate, party, visit the seaside and generally decide to ignore social isolation, that we have been officially sent to our rooms. To all of those in charge of our nation, please be clear and consistent about what needs to be done and what we all need to be doing. To everyone else, can we just get on and do it please? It has felt like an uphill task to get our country to take this seriously - Italy and Spain have been telling us to look to lockdown as we watch with mounting trepidation, and with growing sympathy, what they are all going through. Whereas our 'response' has felt like some kind of British malady - for a moment there it seemed the government was saying, 'well, some of you will die, but it's only the plebs so we are not too worried, do us the world of good really...'. Don't get me started on the procrastination that the 'herd immunity' concept became - another sideshow while the main event gathered momentum and there seemed no real policy in place as a competent or appropriate response to it.
Anyway, now the message is clear - I hope - stay in. Essential shopping and travel to work only, and then only one person from the family to shop and try to work from home if you can. If we can slow down the rate this virus spreads and keep those most vulnerable protected from it full-stop we will have done all we can to help our NHS cope with this crisis and our elderly and infirm safe. That surely is our instinct anyway isn't it? This isn't something we have to be 'officially' told or ordered to do? I realise I am feeling emotional - exasperated, angry and fed up. It has also felt good to vent.