18 March 2020

Big, red and sweet. I spotted the strawberries at our local grocery store. There was still plenty of fruits and vegetables. Lots of food and drink. It was comforting to see.

There is no forced lockdown in the UK as yet. There are warnings to be sensible, to avoid large gatherings and limit travel, but nothing enforceable. By closing things slowly, it has been suggested that the Government is trying to avoid a “second spike” in illness once people come out of isolation.

Our local café up the road is still open. Not a lot of people in it though. Usually it’s packed. Thankful I could still get a coffee and a muffin for the time being.

It also looks like our community is mobilising to help people who are self-isolating. I just put my name down with Wandsworth Council as a volunteer should they need one.

19 March 2020

No museums. No theatres. I walked out of our flat to find some lunch, only to find the restaurant was closed. I went to our local supermarket and found today, it was packed with people.

The shelves were bare. There were hardly and fruits and vegetables left. Thankful I was able to get my fix of strawberries the day before. People were polite though. Many smiled when our eyes met.

I bought my lunch, some treats for our son, and came back to the flat.

20 March 2020

Everything is shutting down around us. It’s our son’s last day at school today. His studies will now be done online. We also heard that there will be no more youth group at church from tonight.

My husband has a few days off work. We would have gone into the city and spent some time together exploring. But we are discouraged from all non-essential travel these days. We walked to Wandsworth instead to grab some bread and a few groceries for lunch.

When we went to the shopping centre, most of the shelves were bare. We looked for a loaf of bread. Unfortunately, other than packets of bagels, there was nothing.

“Who hoards bread??” asked my frustrated husband.

I wish I knew. I bet they were a scared though.

The image was taken at King George’s Park in Wandsworth. I liked the ivy clinging to the brick.

Back at our flat we turned on the television to see the British Prime Minister tell the country to close all restaurants, pubs, cafés, night clubs, theatres and gyms from tonight.

21 March 2020

This was our local grocery store. The one that had plenty of fruits and vegetables only a few days ago.

This is not the toilet paper aisle. This is just your regular food aisle. People must have cleaned it out this morning.

By the time I went in to buy a few things for lunch, it was completely empty. Everyone keeps reassuring us that there is plenty of food in the supply chain, but with all this panic buying, I’m wondering if our family is being too complacent.

It’s all getting a little silly. All I wanted was a sandwich. Who hoards sandwiches?

As well as my family, I am getting worried for NHS staff and other essential workers. Only yesterday the Guardian reported on Dawn Bilbrough, a critical care nurse who couldn’t find any basic food items at her supermarket after a 48 hour shift. The poor woman burst into tears and reminded people to shop thoughtfully.

It was a short walk. But during that walk three different people saw me, came up close and coughed in my general direction. It made me quite paranoid. It almost felt like they were doing it deliberately.

I am telling myself they were just being inconsiderate. Next time that happens, I think I’ll politely ask people to use their elbow.

22 March 2020

It’s Mothers’ Day today in London. I wasn’t expecting anything when my two men surprised me with this card and gift.

Our son thanked me for birthing him into this world and hoped I would live with them for the longest time possible. He also reminded me not to be ashamed of my white hair because if anime has taught him anything it’s that white hair is “rad”.

He’s a sweet thirteen year old. I love him very much.

We went to virtual church today. This time streaming the service through Facebook. I was too tired to hear the sermon properly. But it was nice to read the comments from other people.

23 March 2020

Trying to self isolate as much as possible now. Took a short trip to the supermarket to get some lunch for us and came back to the flat as quickly as possible.

I went early and was able to get some fruit this time. The sandwich shelves were almost gone, but I was still able to pick up a couple of things for me and our son.

It’s our son’s first day home from school. He’s done an hour of maths and music. Now he is reading a book.

I should be at women’s bible study today. But they have also stopped for the time being.

24 March 2020

The country is now officially in lockdown. The Prime Minister announced last night we are not to go out of the house except to get food or medical supplies.

We are also allowed to have one period of exercise outside a day. And that’s it for the next three weeks at least.

I will need to do a big shop this morning. I hope the shelves will be stocked.

I ended up going to two stores this morning. The first hardly had anything on the shelves. I was lucky at the second. I got there after they had just restocked the shelves. I was able to get a few things and come home.

Usually I keep my eyes down cast as I walk, too paranoid now to make eye contact with people just in case they may not be friendly. I forced myself to do the opposite today. To look people full in the face and smile.

I’m glad I did. Many looked stressed. But there was one woman walking her dog who gave me the warmest smile. That was nice.

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Project 2020 is a weekly roundup of images and experiences. It aims to capture moments of joy, pleasure, and thankfulness that are found on any given day. It’s an attempt at remembering the good things and being grateful for them. Thank you for stopping by and I wish you a wonderful day.

6 Comments

  1. The UK (or at least England) has changed so much since we went there in 1991. I so hope that having to all go through this together brings out the best in people instead of increasing fear and hatred. Thinking of you and hoping you stay safe and well.

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