Day 17 – Reflections on Lock-Down

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Today the weather has been cloudy and cold all day.  The weather seems to depict my mood and energy today.  I’ve had little / no energy and little / no motivation to do anything.  Is lockdown getting to me?

I wonder if everyone else has been feeling the same in Edinburgh?  On our daily exercise on Arthur’s Seat there was hardly no one there.  It is the same time we go everyday, so can’t be anything to do with the time of day.  On Tuesday’s walk, when the sun was shining, it was busy, busiest I’ve ever seen it (in lockdown).  There were people everywhere.  So I wonder, whether everyone in Edinburgh has been feeling the same as me and the weather has been affecting everyone’s mood?

Honey the Dog has not been well today either.  Not in any physical sickness, but just not had the amount of energy she usually has, seems a bit under the weather and a bit fed up.  I wonder whether the lockdown is finally starting to affect her?  Or maybe she is tuning into my mood?  Or she has eaten something that she shouldn’t have and it’s causing her to feel unwell (she is a Labrador, after all!).

We bumped into some friends on Tuesday – Miles and Lily.  Honey jumped up at both of them to greet them.  Miles commented that she doesn’t usually do that for them and was she being affected by the lockdown?  I said, I didn’t think so.  This made me wonder.  Outwith lockdown, she certainly does see lots of people she knows on our daily walks.  And she drags me into 3-4 shops/cafe/pub as we walk home, to people who give her a biscuits/treats, etc…There is also the ‘Ear Shop’ (see Day 4).  She still stops at each place (on lockdown), waiting to go in, looking at me despondently, but not knowing that the shutters are down and it is shut.

So perhaps the lack of fuss and attention from everyone is affecting her?  Perhaps I need to give her some more attention, give her some more love.  Some regular time everyday on the sofa together?

About two weeks ago, when lockdown was still a novelty, someone shared a video of Miles, playing a balloon game.  I asked if I could share it in my blog (GDPR and all that) and he has finally given me the go-ahead.  So here it is below on my You Tube Channel.  I don’t have many videos on my You Tube Channel, but everyone I load up (since lockdown) a guy called ‘Tom’ comments virtually immediately saying “great video, keep it up”.  It’s nice to think there is someone out there encouraging me to post stuff on YouTube:

I must say, today felt quite “normal”, as if I am getting used to this daily routine of lockdown.  It seems less unfamiliar and a struggle and more just what life is at the moment.  It has something I have been feeling the last 24 hours.  After all the fear around change and worrying that maybe the lockdown will be coming to an end and not wanting it to change and go back to “normal” (whatever that is), it feels like this is now “normal”.

I’ve found today and yesterday, that by not struggling with the unfamiliarity and “strange times”, I am less in the moment.  I am less aware of the stillness and quiet in the air.  I remember in the early days, writing about the astonishment of the difference that lockdown was bringing to the city.  Now that “newness” is disappearing.  That scares me too.  I strive to live, as much as possible in the moment.  Which, for me comes, when things are different to the daily routines and patterns of life.  I am scared that I will stop being aware of how special life is.  Does that make sense?

One of my regular readers, Matt, has been sharing with me over the last couple of days about perhaps focusing on what hasn’t changed.  He said, he was walking in the park on Tuesday night and suddenly noticed a magnificent tree and looked at it from underneath for a while.  Then thought that it’s always been there.  Wondering what else hasn’t changed?  His thoughts have continue since then, leading onto thinking about nature.  Nature is still carrying on.  The virus, in many ways, is a kind of natural disaster, which has become a health emergency.  Except it is hardly affected the non-human world.  It has in fact, helped the environment clear up a bit.  It’s us humans that are anxious about it, but nature is beginning to thrive.

What do you think?

I will take that thought into my life for the next few days.  Perhaps looking at what has not changed and enjoying nature.  The trees that have been there for hundreds of years!  They don’t seem affected.

I continue to listen to The Art of Letting Go, by Richard Rohr on my Audible book, during out daily walk this bit caught my attention.  He was talking about how human’s strive to live how it used to be.  Bringing life to how it’s always been, how it has been for hundreds of years.  This struck me, of what I have been exploring and struggling with over the last few days and throughout this lockdown.

How everyone talks about when the lockdown ends and we return to “normal” (whatever that is!).

It’s hard to find a good break in what he was saying to quote him, so bear with what he says at the start:

“It was a protection of the status-quo….trying to protect the past.  Tradition.  If all good things happened, hundreds of years ago.  But there was no goodness…available right now…

Always looking to the protection of the past, what we’ve forgot is that we were largely protecting ourselves.  Our own comfort.  Our own securities, or frankly what we were used to.

The ego is comfortable with what it is used to.  It doesn’t like to move outside of it’s comfort zone.  What we are talking about here is, I hope, a kind, I hope a gracious invitation to move outside of what we are comfortable with…the unfamiliar.  Beyond what we are used to.

Beyond our comfort zone.  Beyond what we can explain or understand”.


Did you follow that?

The last part seems clearer to what we are experiencing with lockdown.  The Ego is wanting to return to “normal” to what it is comfortable with.  But now it seems, for me, that my ego is becoming comfortable with lockdown.  Life in lockdown is becoming the familiar way of being.  So maybe when it ends and we return to “normal” it will be unfamiliar again?!

So how did you get on with the last quiz?

Fi said she could not read any of it, because it was too out of focus.  Sorry about that.

It took me 45 minutes to try and copy and paste it.

So I am sticking with what has been shared in my WhatsApp Group.

However, sadly the last remaining quiz shared has been of Edinburgh Pubs.  Not so useful for those of you who don’t know Edinburgh!  Hopefully, there are some pubs with the same name near where you live!

But Fi said she knows a few Edinburgh pubs, so hopefully she will come up with a full list of answers before the night if over!

Here is the quiz (to the right).

Unfortunately, my routine of trying to finish my blog before Bedtime Chi Gong did not happen today.

It is now 00:45, so I won’t be asleep before 2am.  I am sure Honey the Dog doesn’t like all these late nights either!

Hopefully, I can re-set myself over the weekend and try again next week.

I am thinking, I want to try and bring in some more of a routine to my life next week, so I can get the blog finished early and be in bed before midnight!

As always, thanks for reading my blog.  More and more people say that reading the blog has become their daily routine whilst eating breakfast.  Beats the newspaper 😉

Will post the new Chi Gong login details over the weekend.  These will have added security (a password) which I will not share on this blog.  On Tuesday morning, we had an unwanted visitor who had hacked into the Zoom Meeting (I’ve heard it is called Zoom Bombing).

So after extensive research on Zoom and watching lots of videos.  The password is the way forward.

Thanks for reading.

Good Night.

Jim xx