The View From Here

Week Four has started, week four if you happen to live in the UK and hadn’t already started self isolating because you had symptoms or that dreaded term ‘underlying medical conditions’. I’m sure those with medical conditions wish they were underlying rather than a feature of their lives that cannot be ignored.
But whether you are fit and well, or one of those ‘vulnerable’ ( another overused word ) folk who received a letter from the NHS telling you to stay indoors for twelve weeks, your experiences will differ and prove again that life is not fair.
Different countries have evolved various sets of rules and ways of enforcing them. Here in the UK a lot has changed in the past three weeks; while the number of deaths has increased, we are no longer just hearing numbers but hearing the stories of those who have died. Many people have recovered, but any of us could lose family and friends. Most of us probably now think we should have started this sooner; letting the virus run its course and building herd immunity now seems a ridiculous idea.

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It doesn’t feel right that most of us have to stay at home doing nothing, while medical and essential workers hardly see their homes, but we have to keep as many people as possible out of hospital. So the routine for most of us is leave home only for vital shopping, to help our vulnerable neighbours and for daily exercise. For those of us with a vulnerable person to care for at home we have to accept we should not go near shops.

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My view from my home is good; the house across the road is on a corner plot and has a lovely garden with cherry trees in blossom; just to see people and dogs in a garden is a welcome sight in a deserted road. In our back garden the new peaceful atmosphere is highlighted by blackbirds and our robin singing their hearts out. The next door neighbours have been bringing shopping and as they are working from home and the children being home schooled it is much livelier than usual on weekdays and we have chatted more – at a safe distance or texting. The children have started writing stories, inspired by me giving their parents a paperback copy of one of my books; they also write notes on paper aeroplanes to fly over the fence, all good activities for home schooling.

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Our road is not completely quiet; families go past on their daily exercise, Mum jogging while Dad and children pedal furiously to keep up. Couples who never considered ‘going for a walk’ now have a new routine.
For writers, bloggers, gardeners and retired people who have plenty of hobbies and are used to being at home, so far so good. But what of those in cramped flats with children, nearby parks closed, or people living alone in one room who need the space and company that come with being out and about working and spending time with friends.

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If we have had a chance in the past to choose where we live, how could we have foreseen that downsizing to a ‘convenient flat’ or being adventurous and buying a run down stone cottage on a remote mountainside, might be a mistake?
How is the view from where you are?

13 thoughts on “The View From Here

  1. Hi, Janet. Please forgive me for side-tracking from your important post but your blog, like many others, is ad-supported. I just want your views on (a) does this generate any actual revenue and (b) how do you feel about the inane click-bait that appears below your otherwise intelligent and witty posts? I’m not meaning to be rude or critical but I genuinely want to know more about this phenomenon and I will be asking other bloggers the same question. Regards, Doug. PS – It won’t stop me from following your excellent blog 🙂

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    1. A very valid point Doug. Having read your comment earlier I started taking note of how many blogs were ad free and how many were not – the former are winning so far. I tend to mentally block out the ads when I see them on other people’s, but of course what one’s blog looks like on home base is not what it looks like to the reader. Even before ads drop in we don’t know if people are reading us and looking at our pictures on a huge screen or a tiny phone. No I don’t get anything for having the ads, only using WordPress for free. I do also have a paid for website and domain – which I have had for a long time and wish now I had started on WordPress in the first place. I have read that people have had problems when upgrading, but I have thought about it. It will be interesting to see other bloggers’ response to your question.

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      1. I have since discovered that the ads are the price you pay for the free version of WP i.e. that’s how they generate revenue to pay for the ‘free’ sites. I paid for the upgrade and I don’t regret it, even though WP can still be tooth-grindingly painful to work with at times. The Premium version also allows you to monetise your site in your own way, should you choose that route.

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  2. I have had similar thoughts, Janet, although lately (the past few days) I have been a bit preoccupied with the looming food crisis here in South Africa as many thousands of people don’t have money to buy any food at all. I suppose feeling lonely and frustrated because you are stuck inside a small apartment and battling to manage with kids is a luxury of a sort when you think of the poorest of people.

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  3. We’re also on week four here. We have fifty cases, but no new ones in the last month. When I go out for my daily walk, I would say 50% of the people are wearing facemasks. In a public place, such as a store, nearly everyone wears one.

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    1. Yes lucky indeed, I think we are supposed to stay locally and going in a car arouses suspicion that you might be leaving you local area ( sounds like a police state! ) Police have stopped vehicles they suspect of going on a jaunt from the city to the Lake District or the seaside. We don’t have total lock down like France where you have to prove what you are doing out of the house! Most people have been sticking to what we have been asked to do, especially now family of Covid victims are pleading with people to stick to the rules.

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      1. If we are asked to stop driving we will. but at this point, we figure no harm is being committed; we leave our house, get in the car, drive around for a while, come back home and return to our house. I’m sure everyone wants this to end sooner rather than later, but not until the crisis has passed…

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