It is inconceivable that we are on Lockdown Day 75 today - when we went in to lockdown on 23rd March 2020 & we all had the notion that it would be the three weeks initially. I think if we were told it would be 75 days & counting, we would have all taken fright at the prospect.
However, the deadlines have come & gone, been extended, regulations have changed & yet our death toll is over a sobering 40 200 souls. However, the only way to do these unprecedented times is to take it day by day & to keep focusing on the things you can control & to practice gratitude for the things you do not have i.e the Covid-19 virus.
My great grandfather was born in a little rural Shropshire village near the town of Bishops Castle in 1810.
I found this on the Bishop’s Castle Heritage Resource Centre site about a previous plague in 1665 & how they dealt with it:
Bishop’s Castle Plague
One of our research volunteers recently came across this in the BC Borough Minute Book for 7th August 1665.
With limited knowledge we’ve roughly transcribed it. It is incredibly familiar in terms of the measures being ordered-keeping strangers and travellers out of the town ordering a
‘Continual watch and Ward had and held at the several entrances to the town’...., appointing ‘Inhabitants of the town’ to new posts to provide it and even imposing fines of ‘two Shillings’ on those appointed if they fail in their duties.
But it is more draconian still in relation to the hospitality industry ordering that... ‘no Innholder or Victualler or any other person whatsoever do presume to Receive into their Houses any Stranger or Traveller coming from any place or Country Infected or supposed to be Infected within the Realm upon pains of the Sum of Twenty Shillings’.....
[Basically the whole town is being quarantined. It would be interesting to know how quickly this measure was introduced, once news came through about the pandemic. Certainly it is evidence of the fact that though we live in strange times, they are not ‘unprecedented’, even in this quiet corner of the country.]
What struck me about the transcription of the account of the plague more than 350 years ago, is that they understood how to protect the population by quarantining the town. It also surprises me how strict the fines were & that they understood how easily it could spread & therefore the actions they needed to take.
We have the benefit of all the modern conveniences to keep us safe, of grocery home deliveries & broadband to keep in easy contact with our loved ones. We in the UK have not had the tough regulations many other countries have; we have largely appealed to people’s sense of community to keep themselves & others safe by shielding our vulnerable, yet some have flaunted the guidelines with no thought to the NHS staff who would have to nurse them in the worst case scenario.
Many of us have embraced the sense of calm, peace & the luxury of time to just keep busy, we have embraced the sense of neighbourliness by looking out for each other, the sense of community as a coping strategy. Many of us have become so used to our own spaces that we almost have Stockholm Syndrome where we are comfortable in our lockdown & the prospect of leaving it is not appealing.
Lockdown has changed many of our lives quite dramatically - I have become an unemployed, self employed person. However, I am fortunate to have many hobbies, skills, talents & the ‘b’ word (bored) is never, ever in my vocabulary.
Lockdown has also made many of us aware of how hectic life had become, the glorification of being busy have has been lost & I think we have returned to a simpler time, without the need for commercialisation of our time.
Every morning we get a chance to be different, a chance to change, a chance to be better, a chance to keep calm & carry on.
Thank you for stopping by, I hope you are weathering your own storm in these trying times,