It used to be that I sat here at my computer, maybe glancing out of the window on my left, across our back garden, past our neighbour’s house on open side and the Victory Hall – our village hall, and down Westfield Close to the main street, Old Church Road. It used to be that I’d sit here, fingers poised above the keyboard, staring expectantly at the screen and a thought would come into my head and I would begin to write. It used to be that my thoughts might be of what I had recently done, where I had recently been, who I had recently met and what I had done with them and the conversations we’d had. It used to be that my thoughts might be of what I was planning to do, where I hope to go and what might happen there, what adventures I might have and what exciting and unexpected thigs might happen – modest and commonplace though they be. Of course I might also write about what I had been reading and writing, what I had been watching on TV or on-line, or memories of my childhood or work experiences or holidays I’d enjoyed. I might write about recipes I’d been reading about food I liked, books about food and making it, eating it, possibly even growing it.
All these were things I used to do, but life is different now. I still sit here and look out of the window before contemplating my keyboard, but whereas before a thousand thoughts flooded to mind, a few of which I have mentioned above, now I mentally sort through such a limited selection of possible writings that it takes quite a while to actually get going. What have I recently done? Not very much, the same things I’ve been doing over the last months and months. Where have I been? Round the village, along the beach, once a week or less often to go shopping with possibly a short detour round the town just so we can drive home along the sea front. What have I done? Walked the dog, walked the dog some more, gone shopping once a week or less often, ditto driving home along the sea front, tried to write, read, written my blogs – oh wait, I can’t write a blog about writing a blog… housework – but not a lot, cooking – but not a lot, gardening – barely at all. The things I’ve done I’ve repeated over, and over, and over again. Who have I met? No-one except the lady in the paper-shop, passing friends by chance in the street, seeing friends on my computer screen as we zoom – which is lovely of course, heart warming. I’m not complaining about this, I’m lucky to be living with family where we enjoy each other’s company, but we’re all dull and uninspired.
However, spring is coming, snowdrops are here, and daffodils are beginning to follow, and soon there will be bluebells and cowslips, and soon things will be unlocked and we can joyfully meet our friends and take pleasure in seeing more than our small locale. We have been so fortunate and soon we will be able to celebrate that, and I may write about things I’ve seen and done, conversations I’ve had, places I’ve been, experiences I’ve had. I won’t though, forget this strange year, or of sitting with an almost empty head.