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Home Safety

Lockdown 2021 feels so different to the one last spring. Obviously I haven’t been out much, so I could be wrong, but there is a general sense this time that people are just resigned to it and getting on with it. I’m not seeing the rainbows or the teddies in the windows; and clap for carers is a bit of a damp squib (which I find totally understandable, as it became politicised and tired. Even the person who initiated it won’t participate this time around).

On social media there is a distinct lack of quirky lockdown memes trying to keep our spirits up, and even the advertising seems to have changed – no more romanticising how we’re all in this together and trying to outcompete each other on the Coronavirus caring stakes. Instead we’re seeing lots of adverts for nurses and teachers (hmm, can’t think why……), and some quite amusing ones too, as if humour is allowed again. Oh and a lot for property sites, which I guess is a reflection of the stamp duty holiday, and for home delivery. Who doesn’t love the ‘Just Eat’ advert with Snoop Dog doing the catchiest jingle since ‘Do the shake and vac and put the freshness back’? I think that, and the ComparetheMeerkat adverts, are just about getting me through lockdown.

Well, I’m digressing, but I do think that this has been a fascinating period for social history, and it is interesting to see how fashions quickly change, even in terms of the perceived acceptable public response to a pandemic. I guess, one year on from when we first started hearing about that ‘Novel Coronavirus’ in Wuhan and wondering what it has to do with us, living with the virus is now the new norm.

So, maybe today’s picture, which was taken in Ramsgate incidentally, looks suitably nostalgic. It harks back to that time, way back in 2020, when war was declared on a virus and we all pulled together to help defeat it, with that misguided belief that it could all be over by Christmas….

This image forms part of my Daily Print series, and is available to buy here

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Life

Life. It’s what this pandemic, and all the measures to fight it are about. Ending life vs preserving it. Fighting for our lives; mourning lives lost. Limiting our own lives so that someone else may live.

Over 1,000 Covid deaths were recorded today, in the UK alone. And how many more were lost through delayed hospital treatment, or fear of going to hospital? How many lives are slowly ebbing away through loneliness, and a sense that life isn’t really worth living anymore?

We now understand the fragility of things we have taken for granted – even our ability to breathe hangs in the balance. Are we going to be lucky when the virus strikes? Or are our cards numbered?

Life for us is frozen, and yet it thrives. Nature is testiment to that. And as we suddenly marvel at the natural world, now that the noise has been turned down again, we begin to question our own existence.

Maybe it is good to pause a while. Everyone needs to be put in their place when they get above themselves. We are not invincible. Let us remember that. But still, let us fight for every breath for everyone. By just doing nothing.

This image forms part of my Daily Print series, and is available to buy here.