by | May 29, 2020 | Lockdown Diary

Two months, two metres

Lockdown Diary

Katie Oborn

Rainbow paintings in windows to thank the NHS have faded in the relentless sunshine. Two months since lockdown began and recent weeks have seen some measures slightly eased, though there are reminders everywhere to stay apart from other people.

We can now meet one other person from outside of our household in an outdoor space at a two-metre distance, a new ‘freedom’ that has recently been permitted in the social-distanced world that we find ourselves in.

People are now allowed to drive unlimited distances for exercise with no time limit. Beauty spots are becoming crowded at times, as people come out of their caged-up lockdown spaces. I feel empathy for nature and wildlife, after weeks with few humans around, natural areas are invaded again.

Complexities of this situation are still looming on a daily basis, the virus could fade out but then return, it could change its strain and affect people differently. There are elements of fear on the possibility of an uptake in the spread of coronavirus as lockdown is gradually lifted and people start to mix together and move about again.

Plymouth Hoe has become busier now that visitors can drive in and park up. Most days I take an early morning walk from Coxside, over the footbridge to the Barbican, along past Jacka Bakery where there is often a long socially-distanced queue. Or sometimes I go along pavements in Cattedown, strewn with dark-pink Chestnut petals, towards Saltram.

Staying two metres apart, local people have been spending time sitting in the south-facing amphitheatre area in Teats Hill Park with a family member or friend. The mini theatre platform is a suntrap and has become a community meeting point.

Two months without leaving the circumference of Plymouth, I’m beginning to get a little restless cooped up in the bubble of the city. My family live near the Devon and Dorset border I miss seeing them  but we’ve made do with video calls during this time.

Gratitude though, as I leave my front door and walk to a nearby shore, there is much to appreciate where I am and in these strange moments. Eventually, things will change again.

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