A Lockdown Blog

I hadn’t realised that our children use so much toilet paper, but now
that I am fixated on it. I gawp at  how much they go through and I
twitch as they happily re-enact the Andrex puppy advert.

Even though I have always appreciated where we live, I feel especially
grateful at the moment and my heart goes out to those living in
cramped conditions or built up areas where outside space is at a
premium. We are fortunate enough to have the space for the children to
run around and we can even take lessons into the garden.

Ah yes…. lessons, the fun of home schooling. It hasn’t been all bad –
for example, Angus is working on a project about the ancient Egyptians
and  I am now a bit of an expert in how to mummify a body, although
no, I will not be using loo roll to practise with.

However I do get slightly panicky when my 7 year old brings out his
maths homework. Children think you are superhuman at this age and it
is rather dispiriting to see that die in my son’s eyes as I struggle
with his fractions.

We, like the rest of the world, are learning to muddle through and
adapt. Can any good really come from this? Two things spring to mind.
The extraordinary acts of kindness across all communities supporting
and administering to the most vulnerable and an appreciation for those
hitherto invisible workers, usually badly paid, who are now much more
front of mind. I feel we need to hold onto all of this as/when we move
beyond lockdown.

One near term danger is that we begin to turn on each other as the
weeks drag on. Frustration, of course, is high when we see others
‘flout’ the rules yet perhaps it is simply through ‘not realising’
than flagrant disregard. It is too easy to stray into the
sanctimonious. Giving people the benefit of the doubt can be so
difficult, yet I feel we may all need it during this challenging time.

Our business, like everyone’s, has taken a real hit as the bulk of our
revenues are retail and hospitality trade. However, we have a small
but growing online retail business and we are very grateful for this.
Our NHS campaign, whereby we are donating a hand balm to the NHS for
every online order we receive is proving very popular..

We can’t imagine how raw the hands of those working in the NHS must
get. Like so many, we feel rather helpless in this crisis and we hope
that with this small act we can alleviate some pain and show our
amazing NHS that we care. Already we have sent out close to 300 hand
balms to NHS teams across the UK, including some locally in Cumbria,
which is all fantastic. The biggest thank you goes out to our
customers for making this all possible.

This is a time where being grateful for the things we so often take
for granted, our health, where we live, our families and friends. When
I get dispirited about maths homework or whether there will be toilet
roll or flour on the shop shelves, this is what I need to remember.