The Lockdown diaries week 5: less video conferencing and a work anniversary

Another week of lockdown, the death toll in hospitals in the UK has passed the 20,000 mark, the sun is still shining, I feel a building sense of restless. More traffic on the roads, more people out walking and cycling in groups, more police sirens, more indecision from the UK government, a bit more information from the Scottish Government who have at least published a framework for moving out of lockdown.

I’ve found this week quite hard; hard to stay focused on work, hard not to think endlessly about the wider consequences of what we are living through, hard not to feel guilt about the relative pleasure and privilege of my experience of a 21st century plague.  I switched off my computer on Friday, and had a proper day off, that made a difference.

There have been some highlights this week too particularly catching up with various people. Thanks Suzanne Hardy for wearing some fabulous shoes for our catch up with Lorna Campbell.  In case you were wondering dear reader, yes my standards have slipped and I was actually in my bare feet.  

This week also  marked a year since I started out on my own as a consultant and artist.  It’s been quite a year and I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has had enough faith in me to give me paid work over the past 12 months.  In particular, Melissa Highton and Stewart Nicol at Edinburgh University Nic Whitton at Durham University, Leigh-Anne Perryman at the OU, Rosemarie McIlwhan, Heriot Watt  University, Carina McGinty, GMIT, Eamon Costello at DCU and Karla Benske, GritED.

I remember joking with people last years as I was telling them about my decision to give up my job, and saying “well, what’s the worst that could happen?”  Never in my wildest, post Brexit, post Trump dreams did I think that one year on we would be living through a global pandemic. But here we are. I’m still standing as the song goes and hopefully I will be for another year. 

Perfect cue for a cheesy video . . .

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