As I wrote last week, July is about me moving out of the fearful, home-focussed me – actually it’s been more “home-captive” – into the normal me, who is out and about and seeing life.
This long weekend (my weekend includes a Friday) has been a great start. I am still a bit nervous, I have to admit, but I am pushing myself ever so slightly and hopefully I am taking enough precautions to not contract coronavirus, whilst also working on reducing the fear that will only become less helpful as time goes on. So far the adventures have, as predicted, been small yet memorable, but there have been quite a few.
I started with a long walk with one of the offspring in Wyre Forest park, which is about 45 minutes drive from home. I have not been that far away from home since the start of March, never mind about driving there myself. We treated ourselves to coffee and cake from the takeaway café at the end of a good march around the forest in the rain. The first food I have eaten out of my house/garden since 15th March.
Saturday was a huge step as we decided to go back to our favourite café in the village to give them a bit of support on what they admitted was a nerve-wracking day of reopening. It was just coffee, we were there as a family, supporting each other. There was a grand total of 9 other people in the place, including all the staff and everyone was very well spaced out. It was lovely to be back, but it was far from normal.
I have seen friends and family as well – but all outside, either in our garden or on a walk with our excited dogs happy to be out with more humans and a variety of dog treats – my dog claims everyone else’s treats are better than his own.
Possibly the high point of the weekend was an impromptu coffee and croissant early yesterday morning on our now traditional early Sunday morning walk. The café was open, and it was a delightful interlude in our usual routine, and empty cafes seem like a good way to build up courage and some mental resilience.
The fear that I have caught the virus is still there in my mind, but I am soothing the agitation with the knowledge that I was not back to normal contact with people by any stretch of the imagination and that this worry is probably very normal after three months of being safe in my house with very little contact with the outside world.