Cabin fever has struck.
Suddenly I want to get out of our small London flat.
The weather is getting better. The sun is out longer. I can feel its warmth every time I step outside. The once bare winter trees are now blooming with new flowers and leaves.
It is spring. It’s a time when the world is mud-luscious and puddle-wonderful. When Eddie and Bill come running from piracies and marbles; when Betty and Isbel come dancing from hopscotch and jump rope to play outside.
Everything seems to be calling for me to be outside; to go exploring this fantastic city.
But I can’t.
I’m stuck inside.
Safe where the virus can’t get me.
Every day is much like the day before. I go out for the lunchtime shop. I stand in line to enter the supermarket. I try to enjoy this brief period outside as much as I can before I walk quickly back home.
On difficult days I walk around our neighbourhood block or head to the park in front of our flat. I need to feel the sun on my face and get some fresh air. The outing is brief.
We walk a little longer when my husband is with us. We are allowed a period of exercise outside. We either walk to the next suburb to do our groceries or walk up to the Common.
We couldn’t wait to explore London when we arrived. We packed our bags and swapped the warm blue-skyed Australian summer for the cold grey London winter. We were ready to see and experience this remarkable city.
People worried we would struggle with the weather. But I didn’t mind. It was all so new. I liked the London winter. Coming from a dry country, we’ve learned to appreciate the rain.
The city is full of stories; of lives celebrated and lost. History is there in the old cobbled streets right next to modern buildings. London has been a big city for a very long time.
Colonised Australia was federated on 1 January 1901. Our London flat was built in 1900. History is all very new to us.
We bought a family pass to all the palaces and various heritage sites across Britain. Then the country locked down and restricted travel.
I am telling myself the lockdown can’t last forever. I try to console myself by saying these places will still be there when this pandemic is over. I need to be patient.
When this time of forced isolation is over, we’ll be out exploring again.
I can’t wait!