Day 351 – Reflections on Lockdown

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As the days tick by, it feels like we are getting closer and closer to 365 days, a significant day for me as this was the commitment to myself – one year of writing a blog!  Day 365 feels like my day of freedom, the commitment to myself will be over – a day of celebration and rejoice!

Of course, I will continue writing the blog after this day, but, it will be my choice.  That is weird to say, as I could have stopped writing this blog at any point in the last 351 days, but still that is how it feels.

Although, saying that, it’s not actually Day 365 that I reached a year of writing the blog, as it fact I didn’t write a blog for the first 2 days!

I can’t believe it is so close to 365 days, thinking back to the middle part, the end of the hundreds or the start of the two hundreds, it felt like an uphill struggle, but now (well nearly) I have made it!

But then there will be the difficult decision on when do I stop writing it?  At least when I was writing it for a year, I knew I had to just keep on going, whereas after a year, it maybe so much harder?


Wow!  How windy is it right now?   Heavy rain on the roof and Discovery is rocking severely, with sudden gusts of strong winds, it’s quite unnerving.  It’s meant to get up to gusts of 47mph tonight, with gusts up to 55mph on Thursday.  My front door has burst open a few times this evening, so I have had to lock it!  But at least the fire is roaring away, being powered by the wind outside 🙂

This morning I woke up naturally before 7am and felt wide awake, so got up and went for a long walk with Honey the Dog.  Then did my dishes, had breakfast outside, went to the shops and still arrived at Qi Gong early at 9am.  On the way to the shops I noticed a guy cycle past with a trailer with soapy water in it, it looked like an ingenious way to clean windows!  On the way back from the shops, I saw the guy cleaning some windows and his bike chained up round the corner – he was a cycling window cleaner!!

Felt great to have so much time on my hands first thing and certainly had an impact on the rest of my day 🙂

After QI Gong, I was all set to go to a Zoom webinar at 10am to learn about using the online conference platform Hopin.  I tried to join without success, only to notice it started at 10pm today not 10am – so I changed it to tomorrow.  This gave me a free morning for me to do some paid work.  Then I remembered the laminate cutter I had bought at Screwfix had to be returned today to meet within the 30 Day Returns Policy.  I had bought the laminate cutter to cut the laminate Hannah had given me for my kitchen, but since then have decided to get vinyl instead.

Wondering how to get to my flat and back on my bicycle and ensure Honey got a long walk, I came up with the realisation to take Honey with me.

So at lunchtime we jumped on the bus and headed to Easter Road, I dropped Honey off at Mo Beans Coffee Shop to hang out with her friend Nuno then headed to my flat.

I collected the laminate cutter and headed to Screwfix.

The memory of the last time I tried to take something back came rushing back to me and I got nervous.  The last item was a Soup Maker, which is ultimately a kettle with a handheld mixer at the top.  I bought this early summer 2020, with the inspiration to make more soup.  I used it once and then realised it was a total waste of money.  I washed it out loads, packed it all back up and took it back, saying I hadn’t used it.  However, the returns department were very thorough, opening the box, unwrapping it all, checking all the parts were there and smelling the inside.  They told me it had been used, refusing to let me return it.  I felt so guilty!  But I left it at the top of my street on Easter Road with a wee note saying it was free to a new home and had only been used once.  It had been picked up by someone within 10 minutes !  I hope that made someone’s day 🙂

I hadn’t used the laminate cutter, although I had assembled it, I felt a nervousness going into Screwfix.  But they didn’t even open the box, just gave me a refund 🙂

Then I returned to collect Honey and we went into the Ear Shop and got her a Pigs Ear!

Then we got the bus home, but it was only 4pm, so I did a few more hours work, before a Zoom meeting at 7pm 🙂

Lockdown Restrictions Corner

Today Nicola announced that that proposed easing of restrictions to take place on 15th March (Day 357) has been moved to this Friday (Day 354).

So from Friday

  • Up to four people from two households can meet outdoors.
  • Restrictions for young people (12-17) will also be eased allowing up to four of them to meet outdoors from up to four households.
  • Outdoor non-contact sports for adults willl also start.

She also announced that on 26th March (Day 368) people will be able to gather for communal worship of up to 50 people as long as physical distancing is maintained.

However the “stay at home” message will remain in place.

She also announced that on the First Anniversary of lockdown – March 23rd – there will be a national silence.

Of course, this is a controversial date (for me) as I would say a year of lockdown is March 24th.  23rd March is when lockdown was announced at 8.30pm, which was only 3.5 hours long before the end of the day and really were our movements affected by the announcement?  I would argue (see Day 99) that lockdown began on the first full day – 24th March 2020.

Nostalgia Corner

Following on from ‘Lockdown Restrictions Corner’ today I am taking you all to Day 99.

This is the day that the world (well most of it) announced 100 days since lockdown.  I did loads of research and picked up their errors (from my viewpoint)!!

See below –



This article starts with “Tuesday marks the 100th day since the UK went into lockdown.”.

But is that strictly true, because a day is 24 hours long, not just 3.5 hours long!  Wednesday marks the 100th day since the UK went into lock-down.



The Mirror starts with “We have lived in lockdown for 100 days, life before March 24 a distant memory.”.

This gets more confusing, as it says “lived in lock-down for 100 days” – BUT “life before March 24th”….suggesting that lock-down did not start until March 24th, but announcement was on March 23rd – which means tomorrow is Day 100 not today!



The headline of this article is “UK reaches 100 Days in lockdown”.  But goes on to say “today marks 100 days since Boris Johnson announced the UK was going into lock-down”.  

The headline is wrong, the words after are correct.



This article says “It’s remarkable to think that we’re here marking 100 days since we were told to stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives”.  

Clearly he is acknowledging that it’s 100 Days since we were told of lock-down, but does that mean it is Day 100?

Interestingly, it is saying 100 Days of lock-down in England, not the UK!  I had to think for a moment, whether Scotland, N. Ireland and Wales are classed as now being out of lock-down!



The article starts with “Edinburgh is slowly returning to a form of normality after 100 days of lockdown“.

My argument again, is that a day is 24 hours long, NOT 3.5 hours long!


Readers Corner

A mammoth sharing from Helen for today’s Readers Corner!

Helen was following up from yesterday’s (Day 350) ‘Nostalgia Corner’ when I asked how does ‘Stay at Home Choir’ work?!


Helen writes:

“I was trying to think how to describe the virtual choir recording/submission process…

This is my submission video for You’re All I Need To Get By with The Swingles, except I’ve added the guide track on top of my voice, because my voice on its own sounds horrific. I am NOT a soloist!”




In regards to this video, Helen checked it was ok to share saying “I also got a reply from the SAHC that it’s ok to share.”  See the Facebook post below –


Helen continues saying:

“So the poor people at The Stay At Home Choir get my raw video that’s just me, my voice & I (the guide track is playing in an earphone in my ear and that’s what keeps me in time and more-or-less in tune).

Then the audio engineers take all the submissions and do some kind of black magic and sorcery to put all our voices together and blend us into one choir.

At the beginning of each submission video/audio you have to clap very audibly in time with the guide track. This is what they use to line up all the submissions so that we all start at the sane time.

Everyone does their own recording on a smartphone, ipad or pc at home. I normally record in the sauna. Quietest room in our house and if I lock the bathroom door then I won’t be disturbed.


Helen even made a wee video, for the blog community (Brayshaw, MJ, 2020) with a summary of all of the above!




Thanks Helen!  Sounds fun – I may join.

I’m very impressed that you have a sauna in your house!!  I have one too in the form of my wood burner 😉


As I come to the end of this blog it is a bit later than I had hoped, now nearly 11.30pm, but I seem to have more energy this evening.

Discovery continues to be blown around as gusts of mind whizz down the canal, with a sudden rock and everything creaks.  I’m not sure what is worse, the strong winds or the sound of someone hitting the boat when they are trying to break the frozen canal?!

Today it has been cold, but a nice day with a bit of sunshine.  This evening it has been stormy with wind and strong winds.  Looks like more to come for the rest of the week.

Hope you’ve had a Tremendous Tuesday 🙂

Jim x



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