Day 75 – Reflections on Lock-Down

posted in: Stories | 1

Today is Saturday my Day of Rest.  I stayed up too late last night, getting to sleep at 3am!  I had the ‘Friday Feeling’…which I haven’t experienced for over 10 years.

Being self-employed for so many years, I find my work is more of a lifestyle, bluring the boundaries between work and not work.  So those feelings of excitement that it is Friday and soon the weekend or that sinking feeling on a Sunday evening, with the weekend over and going back to work tomorrow.  Just doesn’t exist.  Especially, working as a magician – my work usually begins Thursday, Friday and Saturday!  I have missed not experiencing them!

But, with lock-down, now that I have such a busy life and do Chi Gong Sessions Monday to Friday, I have that work/life structure and so its back 🙂

I was thinking today about how I haven’t felt lonely since lock-down.  Which is weird – outwith lock-down, if I haven’t seen any friends, etc…for a week or so – and not been out my flat much, I would often feel really lonely.  Honey the Dog helps with that a bit, but doesn’t really overcome the feeling of loneliness that I would feel.

But no feeling of loneliness in lock-down.  I think it is due to writing this blog every day and all the lovely comments I get from people the following days.

Even if no comments, it feels like I am connecting with all you readers out there – even knowing that a few of you are enjoying the daily reading – somehow has shifted the loneliness.

I guess I am sharing how my day has been as if I am “talking to you all”.  Plus, forever taking photos, of anything I see that is interesting to be included in my blog.

Also, just running through kind of conversations in my head – writing words in my head – to be included in the blog.  I remember writing about that in the early days of my blog.  I “write my blog” in my head when I am on my daily walk/run with Honey the Dog.

So I guess, in a kind of way – I am “talking” to you all day – as I put my blog together.  So you are “with me” through my day – which I guess eases the feeling of loneliness?

I also think has more of an enforced routine helps.  That is probably the thing I miss the most being self-employed (outwith lock-down), there is no enforced routine of going to work.  I have learnt, over the years, that a routine, leads to a rhythm in life.  I don’t think I have really ever felt having a ‘rhythm’ in my life since I became self-employed in 2007!

In lock-down, I have Chi Gong morning and night in week-days.  The writing of this blog.  And my afternoon walk/run with Honey the Dog.

So I have a routine and that feeling of rhythm is here.  Maybe that is why I don’t want lock-down to finish?!

So if any of you are feeling lonely in lock-down, why not write a daily blog?


Another thing that has been going round my head for the last few days is how people are not recognising me as a magician.

In the last few years, I couldn’t go anywhere without being recognised as ‘Jim the Magician’.  People (who were not friends) in the street, in the pub, on the train, on holiday – everywhere and anywhere – would recognise me!

In fact, when I was out for Hogmanay (new years eve) this year, I had this strange feeling that something was missing.  I was out with some friends in the Edinburgh Corn Exchange, for Massaoke – so lots of different Edinburgh folk.

I worked out later, it was because no one throughout the whole night said/shouted “Oh my God – it’s Jim the Magician”.  Which made me realise, that this happens so often, when it doesn’t happen, I feel something is missing.

But since lock-down started not one person (who I don’t know) has said this to me.  A few people, who I don’t recognise, whilst passing in the street have said “loving the blog”, but no mention of my magic.

In fact, I have now started doing a magic trick each day to the staff at Easter Greens – which feels weird, as they don’t me as ‘Jim the Magician’, but more as “the guy who walks Honey the Dog”.

Actually, it seems that Honey the Dog is now replacing ‘Jim the Magician’ and being recognised from my blog!

It’s nice to have a break from all the fame 😉

Today I had a long lie and got up about 11am.  By the time, Honey the Dog and I went out for our morning walk it felt quite hot outside.  My jeans and 3 layers was making me hot!

We went to Dalmeny Street Park to see the finished planting from Thursday (Day 73).  It’s looking good!

On the way back, I started spotting various people walking around with plastic pint glasses of beer.  Then I noticed, a whole load of people standing in the street, with pints of beer, socially distanced chatting.

At the top of the street I found the Iona Bar, was open for the first time, doing take-away beer.  But you couldn’t sit in their beer garden, hence why folk had gone to the street nearby.  Plus, a growing queue outside.  £5.50 for a pint of Tennents Larger, £6.00 for a pint of Strongbow Cider!

I then decided to re-arrange my living room.  It never really recovered with the main centre piece, the dining room table, being moved to my spare bedroom – now my office.  So I moved the furniture around and it is looking great!

Outside, the sky was now a full blue sky, I decided to go for a long walk early.

So I put my shorts and t-shirt on and headed out.

Expecting there to be hundreds of people having picnics on Holyrood Park I was pleasantly surprised that there was a lot less.  Only one picnic, the rest was socially distanced gatherings / beer drinking.

Honey the Dog is great at sniffing out the picnics – trying to eat some of their food!  Last weekend, after helping herself to a couple of picnics, I had to put her on the lead.  But today, she was fine – so clearly no picnics happening 😉

Honey’s ‘pond’ in the valley or ‘fish bowl’ as I have come to hear it is is called, has shrunk a little bit more since Day 72 (last photo I took of it).

When we got home, it was time for Gandolf’s Birthday Zoom Party.  I opened the email to see that it was only going on for 40 minutes.  It was now 50 minutes, since it had started.  But when I arrived, there was still about 6 people there.

It turned out the 40 minute curfew was due to Gandolf having an free account on Zoom.  Which limits you to 45 minutes of more than 2 people.  But, at the allocated 45 minutes, apparently a message popped up and said they could continue!  That was nice of Zoom.  Did they know it was his Birthday?

I then fell asleep this evening, watching some TV and now my blog!


Readers Corner

Nothing to include in Readers Corner today 🙁


It Made Me Smile

I created this section yesterday.  It was called ‘It Made Me Laugh‘, but as I cannot find anything online, that has made me laugh – I have broadened it to ‘Smile’.

I found an article by The Guardian from a few weeks ago, with their readers favourite coronavirus street art.  You can see the full article here –

Here’s a few that made me Smile.


“This made me stop, smile and take a photo”

This is street art in Ealing, London.  The description in the article for it is –

“This curious glittery sign appeared on the street overnight and made me stop, smile and take a photo.

I was pleased to see that there’s no shortage of creativity despite everything else that’s going on. Ben Park, Ealing in London



“It is representing something we all want to say”

This is street art in Hackney, London.  The description in the article for it is –

“These sign paintings have been accumulating over the past months.

They have become a landmark in our area.

The route is a main road between two major hospitals so ambulances pass by regularly.

I like it because it is representing something we all want to say.

With all the museums closed, it feels like art has found a way to come out into public space and remind us all why we need it here – and more than ever at this time. Asif Khan, Hackney in London”


“I wanted to use my art as a voice”

This is street art in Cambridge.  The description in the article for it is –

“I know my friends are missing being at school and that the teachers are missing us too, so I wanted to use my art as a voice to acknowledge that.

The crossing at my school, Comberton Village College in Cambridge, felt like the perfect place to make an artwork. Rowan Briggs Smith, Cambridge”


As I come to the end of today’s blog, it is still a reasonable time and not too long a blog.  Apologies if the last couple have been super long!

This evening, on our bedtime walk it was raining.  The sun had gone.  The forecast was rain at 4pm, so we did well to have a lovely sunny afternoon.

With ‘Black Lives Matter’ protests happening across England today, triggered by George Floyds death, I have been wondering how it has felt for everyone to be amongst so many people again.  After 10 weeks of lock-down and for many people hardly seeing anyone, how has it been for them all to be with so many people again.

Tomorrow, Honey and I are heading on the bus for the first time since lock-down to go to our first pre-arranged socially distanced event – a BarBQ.  The last time I got the bus was on the 14th March (my last magic gig, a baby shower in Glasgow), which was 12 weeks ago.  So we have our face coverings and lots of alcohol gel.  I am feel quite apprehensive about going on the bus, but also excited to be going to a new part of the city.

The last time I was in the city centre was on Saturday 22nd March, when I was driving back from the south of England.

Hope you have all had a good Saturday.

Thanks for Reading.

Jim xxx

  1. Susi

    Hey Jim the Magician!

    I can imagine the whole bus trip will feel odd, I’m interested to know!

    I was trying to explain to Marco that he could see a friend because the rules had changed. He is only 4 and the first question he asked was, ‘can we touch people now?’ It makes me feel sad that this will be part of his childhood memories! I hope he can touch people again soon.

    A friend of mine has moved near to you, I must try introduce you remotely some how.

    Enjoy your bbq!
    Susi x