Mercy tea, yoga and Pat Butcher

I'm still making my morning cup of tea when Dylan comes on screen, and it's less than a minute before he's promising to send me a mercy parcel of Yorkshire Tea, shocked at the barbaric tea conditions this Brit has to endure here in New Zealand. I laugh and ask him how lockdown's going. 'Weirdly... Continue Reading →

Live the life you love

Jenny laughs, when I ask her how lockdown is going. 'Well, I'm quite enjoying it, I have to say, although it's been a real emotional journey, from absolute, acute, ridiculous, over the top oh-my-god-I'm-going-to-die-tomorrow kind of anxiety at the start, with me making out my will and all sorts.' That anxiety went away a bit... Continue Reading →

The tortoise and the hare

'Lockdown is very slow,' Gemma pops up, and then ducks out of sight on the screen. 'I was furloughed for the first four weeks, and as soon as I started loving furlough life, they called me back; our systems aren't set up for working from home.' The first week was weird, she says, mainly because... Continue Reading →

Planes, sailboats and faffing

Scott spent lockdown with his girlfriend, who moved in with him when the UK lockdown was announced. It went well, with Scott wishing he’d asked her to move in sooner, and they celebrated their anniversary with a BBQ and local adventures, rather than the sailing trip with friends they’d originally planned.  Generally he’s felt fine,... Continue Reading →

Lockdown dating diary

The screen flickers and I see the beams of Ruth's kitchen ceiling, and I picture her little country cottage nestled in a picture perfect Cotswold village, surrounded by rolling hills and endless green English countryside. I see a figure in a dressing gown moving about at the bottom of the screen, and a voice shouts,... Continue Reading →

Race against the moving clock

It's been two and a half years since I last saw Charlie, when we ran across the Wadi Rum desert in Jordan together. I'd forgotten how calm and collected she is, and how soothing her voice is to listen to. "I would probably say our lockdown has been better than some other people have found... Continue Reading →

School dayz

"Do you know what," Kim says, coming closer to the screen like she's telling me a secret, "lockdown hasn't really changed any element of my life whatsoever. I was already antisocial," she says with a smirk, "it's just now I'm doing it on someone else's terms, so, you know, it's just like 'yay, I don't... Continue Reading →

Experienced detachment

The face on screen is familiar, yet I've not seen or spoke to this guy in 23 years. He's not aged, I think to myself, apart from he's grown a beard. Definitely wouldn't have been able to do that at sixteen. It's not awkward though, and he starts talking. "In some ways, I think my... Continue Reading →

Birthday rollercoaster

It's Laura's birthday the day we speak, the 7th May, and she's planning a chilled day with the family. Not that she can really do much else, she tells me, being in the middle of the UK lockdown. The way Laura pronounces the words 'music' and 'avenue' remind me of my Mum, and I have... Continue Reading →

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