17th February, 2021. Sunshine and Horses and Kindness.

There is sunshine and wind and the snow is melting. I go down to the horses and meet my posse. These two sisters and their mum are my bubble; they are the one household I am allowed to see. We meet outside every day and social distance like crazy things, but they are human andContinue reading “17th February, 2021. Sunshine and Horses and Kindness.”

16th February, 2021. Showing Up.

When I started the original lockdown diary, almost a year ago, I was going to write everything. I was going to write the world. I was going to write all the incredible humans and all the shocking events and all the doubts and hopes and fears. I would write it all.  Then, when I startedContinue reading “16th February, 2021. Showing Up.”

5th February, 2021. Sing Your Song.

A poet sends me a poem. It has a line in it which goes, ‘This is a song of sorrow’. That is her song and she is singing it. It is a song for a country which is lost, for somewhere far away, for memories and dreams, for long-dead family, for childhood tales, for somethingContinue reading “5th February, 2021. Sing Your Song.”

15th January, 2021. Give it to the Page.

The sun is shining after days of dreich. A young friend rings up. She is twelve. She has been asked to write a critical essay on Little Red Riding Hood and she doesn’t understand it and she doesn’t know where to start and she would like me to help her. I’ve been offering any tutoringContinue reading “15th January, 2021. Give it to the Page.”

7th January, 2021. Anarchy and Famous Blue Raincoats.

There is madness in America.  I don’t really know how to write about this. Watching from far away, I found the noise and the lunacy and the fire and the fury not quite real. My brain could not compute or calibrate. Who were these people, and what were they doing, and what did they want?Continue reading “7th January, 2021. Anarchy and Famous Blue Raincoats.”

6th January, 2021. Words and Flight.

The sun is shining and the world is blue and gold and white. It has gone silent again, as everybody is indoors, confined to barracks. The normal mutter and chug of the diggers and tractors and vans is missing; the occasional shouts and whoops and hoots of laughter that filter through my window are gone. Continue reading “6th January, 2021. Words and Flight.”

5th January, 2021. Birdsong.

It is just before eight in the morning and two little birds are singing outside my window. One has a high, light, staccato beat, a kind of tik-tik-tik. One is singing lower and longer, a bass note by comparison. They sing in harmonious unison for a while; sometimes together, sometimes as a call and response. Continue reading “5th January, 2021. Birdsong.”

4th January, 2021. Midnight and Bridget.

I got a little bamboozled over the weekend. The whole point of this new diary – and this new year and this new resolution – was that it would not be predicated on the lockdown. It would not be doom and gloom and pandemic and we are all going to die. It was going toContinue reading “4th January, 2021. Midnight and Bridget.”

Lockdown Diary: New Year’s Eve. Farewell to 2020.

Oh, I was going to write you such an end-of-the-year post. It was going to be magnificent. It would have everything in it and it would send you into 2021 with a smile on your face and a dance in your step. But my work ran away with me and now it’s 6.45pm and IContinue reading “Lockdown Diary: New Year’s Eve. Farewell to 2020.”