So when I wrote my last blog I had as I put it been through the worst six months of my life and was trying to get used to my new normal. Living with the fact that my Darling daughter had been diagnosed with a difficult cancer. Little did I know that all our lives were about to get turned on their heads. Enter Covid-19 just in time for my three days away to Belfast with some girlfriends for a bit of a reboot.
We went anyway as the Corona Virus news was only just hitting the headlines by the time we had arrived there was talk of closing the bars for St.Patrick’s day unheard of! and from our prospective highly unlikely. But when it did actually happen we just had to make the best of it and so we did, we dressed up as planned and managed a pub crawl of lesser proportions, little did we know that it would be the last time we would see the inside of any pub for quite some time to come.
We flew back Into London not a day too soon! All of a sudden, we were all in Lockdown ! So my new normal was about to take on a whole new shape.
Social distancing become compulsory, people were fighting over toilet rolls in supermarkets, bloody toilet rolls I ask you??. Hand-washing became an obsession. Previously cared for manicured hands were scrubbed within an inch of their lives and became raw and cracked. The shops ran out of hand- wash and unscrupulous sellers on Ebay were cranking up the price to anyone who was desperate enough.
We were hungry for information about this killer virus. We googled every variation of the spelling Corona Virus! Covid -19! Saars! As fear spread our thirst for knowledge accelerated. The Government briefing’s that started to air daily at around 4pm became the new must see box set. We sat glued hanging on every word looking at graphs we didn’t understand and listening to the same words over and over again Stay Home! Protect the NHS! Save Lives! The mantra that was to haunt our dreams for weeks to come as we stayed cooped up at home reading books and painting rainbows to decorate our windows to honour the front line workers of the NHS who worked tirelessly to save those lives!
Then there was the Thursday evening clap of appreciation started by the internet (where else?) The whole street would congregate on the doorstep at precisely 8pm clapping and banging pans saying thank you to the NHS. Boris the PM was seen on the steps of Number 10 clapping on a regular basis until he too succumbed to the virus and was rushed to intensive care. The nation held its breath. Even those who hated him and what he stood for had to face the fact that this virus didn’t give a fuck who it infected and even the toughest amongst us could be bought down. The fear was real.
So, we carried on with the new not normal, normal. Schools were shut! Pubs were shut! Restaurants were shut! The only thing open were our mouths. If we weren’t stuffing them with food, we were using them to voice our opinions on Facebook. In-between we sucked on bottles of alcohol and fags and tried to remain hopeful that the pandemic would be short lived. No such luck. Eventually my whole summer got cancelled.
The new normal meant that people worked from home where possible and this meant negotiating around their children who were trying to be home schooled. Chaos ensued. People were only allowed out to exercise once a day so the usually quiet woods and parks were filled with jogger’s dog walkers and cyclists. Chaos ensued. Groups of adolescents hid in bushes leaving the smell of dodgy cigarettes wafting on the breeze. The world and his wife had taken up walking as their sport of choice or just to counteract their obsessive comfort eating.
Piers Morgan used his position to bully and harangue any politician stupid enough to go on ‘Good Morning Britain’. Day after day he tore people to shreds like a tiger that hadn’t been fed for weeks and all the while his double chin kept on growing. The Media went into a frenzy running every sad story and printing death tolls from around the world in big letters. Of course, every country was doing better than us with the exception of America. Donald Trump managed to surpass himself acting like a mumbling muppet -puppet suggesting that the American people drank disinfectant as a cure for Covid 19 and looking more like a tangerine by the day. As the death toll grew so did our anxiety, shopping became a stealth like occupation. For those who could get a slot their shopping came to the door but slots online soon got swallowed up.
The rest of us would try to creep out when the queues outside local shops were small. I could see the Co-op from my window, a view I had once despised but was now very useful! Once successfully gaining entry to the shop I would negotiate the aisles like a cat burglar, trying to avoid being seen or heaven forbid getting within two meters of another human being. Pasta was scarce and flour was nonexistent as everyone had taking to baking cakes proudly displaying the finished results on Instagram and Facebook. The purchase of alcohol was compulsory and there seemed to be an abundance available but not so the mixers! Tonic water ran out regularly.
Shopping online became a distraction and the Amazon man was our new best friend. Although, as much as we wanted the goods we had ordered, (masks, paints, puzzles, books) we were rather afraid of the boxes they came in. After the Amazon man, had placed them on our doorsteps and ran away as if he was playing a game of knock-down ginger, we eyed the parcel with suspicion. The talk of the Corona Virus living on surfaces for several days meant the innocent cardboard box became a thing to be feared. We picked it up as if it would explode or even used our feet to manoeuvre it into the house. Then we either used gloves to open it or sprayed it with bleach and then of course threw the box out immediately and washed our hands again!
As our anxiety grew it was further heightened by the continuous stream of Conspiracy Theories being spewed out like a bad case of the Novo Virus infecting our lives from every possible media angle. You Tube was full of them with Facebook leading us all down the yellow brick road to find them. People you thought you knew became fervent about these theories and would press home the main points from deep within their brainwashed heads. Their fear was obvious and only added more weight to the atmosphere of generalised anxiety that abounded on every web page. In order to save my own sanity, I would mute these threads before I became embroiled in skirmishes with unknown trolls with nothing better to do than slate the government and stir up the fear.
My anxiety was finally tipped over the edge anyway when I found a strange man had taken to climbing into my front garden in the middle of night and was watching me through the window and pleasuring himself. Social Distancing he wasn’t! Lockdown clearly meant nothing to this person who was clearly a member of the ‘Care in the Community’. The police were called but he came again and after doing some research of my own I found out that he had been terrorising the neighbourhood for some time and was clearly mentally ill. It made me so angry that while people think Care in the Community is a wonderful thing nobody seems to give a shit about Care OF the Community! I was forced to get extra locks and had taken to sleeping with a large yellow hammer and Billy Bear, although Billy was only there for the company.
So besides beefing up my security I had a ring doorbell installed and the following night got him on video climbing in again. I passed this to the police who have identified him and so far, he has not been back to me but last Friday he did exactly the same thing to a friend of mine a few blocks away! So, he remains at large even though the home he is from knows what he’s up to. Utter bloody madness!
In-between swigging gin and looking out of my window every five minutes I became acutely aware of my singleness! Yes, I date people but with my daughter to shield I couldn’t see any of them and so my Lockdown lust was born. I had taken to posting pictures of my daily Lockdown lust fantasies in the form of hunky actors. Even the politicians began to look sexy with Dishy Rishi and Dashing Dominic leading the way.
I began to envy those in lock-down with their lovers. One could make such good use of the unexpected down time and I would probably have been perfectly happy spending most of my lockdown in the horizontal position. As the weeks progressed so did my desire and then I watched the series ‘Normal People’.
If anything was going to make my lock-down lust worse it was a program with a hunky Irish lead who wore a chain and beautifully filmed sexual scenes that were honest and sensual with nudity on both sides for a change. The soothing Irish accent soon had me transported back in time and my happy hours in the arms of ‘Irish’. The program was so well received around the world it will without doubt be the most watched Lockdown box set. For me it held a special place and reminded me that the longing for my particular Irishman remains. I feel sorry for the next guy I see I hope he’s been keeping fit 😉
On a lighter note, I’ve done some daft things during lock-down. I accepted the challenge to put my bins out in my ballgown which made it on to the BBC and dressed in my Butlin’s Sailor outfit for a Social Distanced V.E Day which also made the news. I’ve painted lumps of wood for decorations and hung bunting on my fence. I have danced round my kitchen all by myself wearing just my underwear when I’ve managed to drink just a little too much Gin (which is often) and been arguing with Alexa on a regular basis. I have been on my stilts, played netball and hula hooped in the garden. I have watched so many box-sets I think that thing about square eyes is actually true!
The peace and quiet seems to have encouraged the local wildlife to be bolder and the dawn chorus is chirping away actually waking me up like never before. My little Robin family are frequently seen as are the local foxes and with the lack of air pollution the sky has never been so Blue. So maybe the earth has had a much needed rest from its largest infestation , the human race.
So,lockdown for me has been an levelling experience (although sadly not horizontal) but it would be a lie to say that I have learned any new things about myself. All it has done is underlined what I already knew. My family are my world seconded only by my friends and I miss both in varying painful degrees. I am indeed a Party- animal and love going out and dressing up for an occasion. I love London and being out and about. I really miss the pub and girl’s nights in. I enjoy my own company but love the company of men and I miss sex oh! The sex! I am tough and can put up with a lot and already have! But being locked-down is not in my nature. I am a free spirit and need to let that spirit fly. I hope it will be flying soon otherwise I might just go Covid-Crazy! Nothing normal about me already I suppose you could say. See you on the other side. Love and stay safe Gaynor xx