Lockdown Writeup

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In May 2020 - and with the campus closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic - Crawley College students were set a college-wide writing challenge about life in lockdown.

They were invited to write 250 words – fact or fiction – about the lockdown experience, and they didn’t disappoint.

LockDown WriteUp

Students of all abilities sent in entries, giving us transactional accounts of days spent at home to imaginative stories with twists and turns!

We’re delighted to be able to share some of our students’ stories below:

The world is still. With the cluttered cacophony of human noise now extinct, the silence is deafening.

I recall the public address the PM made that night we went into lockdown. 

“There is a new virus!” he said.  “Stay in your homes!” he said.  

If only people had listened!  So here I am, alone.  Standing outside holding a cup of tea made from the rampant mint that has now conquered the garden. 

Everyone thought the virus came from bats in China; but by the time governments realised that the virus was part of an invasion, it was too late.

Next door’s cat slinks into view. He looks well fed, and I wonder if he hunts. He rubs himself round my feet, meowing. Maybe someone feeds him. 

Suddenly, the silence is sabotaged by what sounds like a loud insect buzzing. As it whines closer, I realise it’s mechanical, and I decide to retreat inside and watch it from a safe distance.  I take refuge behind the curtain and see a small drone-like hovercraft darting around the garden, searching for something. It must have detected my movement.

But it doesn’t see me. In my haste to get in the house I have forgotten about the cat, and a surge of guilt washes through me.  A white-hot laser and a deafening crack; and all that is left is a scorched patch of smouldering grass where I remember the cat having been. 

I say this; we are isolated, but not alone.

This person is a caring, intelligent, and a superhero cook, but now everybody knows her by the term of Super-Mum.  Why? When? Where? You are about to find out….

After following the government advice to stay at home, save lives, save the NHS; every mum in this country has been promoted to a new career - private tutor - nevertheless free-of-charge, for her beautiful offspring.  As a member of the family, mum defends peace, equity, and friendship on a day-to-day basis.

Additionally, she uses her pyjamas as day uniform, as she is not allowed to sleep because she is on a stakeout for the virus who has caused this misunderstanding of a career change. Her costume is made from soft, velvety cotton with joyful, playing sheep patterns inspired by the pandemic trend on BBC World News.

Powerful, emotional blackmail is her secret weapon to control the household because it forces the occupants to tell the truth and deflects harmlessly from any rising situations that may appear.  

To many people’s surprise, she is trained in multitasking tablets, laptops, and any electronic devices that may lose connection during the video conference for her work.   Unfortunately, Super-Mum will lose her powers if the pyjamas are being washed and ironed regularly. Over the weeks, Super-Mum has faced several enemies. Some of her evil enemies are called Netflix and Amazon Prime while others like social media platforms want to inform and stress that, finally, Greta is happy.

John woke to another day knowing it was just going to be more of the same.  Not only was he in lockdown, but he was also considered extremely vulnerable and he had to remain indoors.  These four walls, and the space in-between, had become as well know and familiar as the most intimate of lovers.  He knew every grime laden stain, every groan and moan the room could offer.

He had moved into this room the day before lockdown started and in those early days it was a space worth exploring, all new – well to him.  He had only brought only a few possessions with him.  His pull-down wall bed allowing the space to be maximised.  His mini set of exercise kit, despite his vulnerability maintaining fitness remained important; although their dustiness belied his commitment in recent weeks. Most importantly, his kitchen.  John was a gourmet chef by career and a foodie by inclination.

John started across the room at the box of supplies that had been delivered late the previous evening.  Whilst it was laudable on every level.  The dedication and risk the volunteers took, the free food – essential as he could not work – John could not help but think of the poverty of choice this food bundle gave him.

John started to create today’s menu, tinned soup to start, then flash fried volunteer kidneys with baked beans – not even branded beans.  John wished he had got the volunteer’s name before his axe took that life.  Too late now.

24th day of May, the year 2020.

24-hundred hours into the detriment of a lockdown placed upon us ever-so careless "brits" of the Nation. To me, it was just another day. Nothing had changed. The so-called isolation was part of my usual daily routine anyways; sitting behind a computer almost for the rest of my day, either composing music that convey sad pentatonic emotions or playing the breath-taking 'World of Warcraft' that I had just got into recently. Either way, I find time to fit both into my schedule since work is out and college is over.

25th day of May, the year 2020. 13-hundred hours into the day.

We are out of milk! How can one eat dull-as-cardboard cheerio's without milk? The answer is no-one.

25th day of May, the year 2020. 15-hundred hours into the day.

I had not even stepped out of the house, to notice a somewhat enormous queue which had spanned from the shop to my front yard and it is worth mentioning that my local Co-operative is a 5-minute walk away from where I reside. What should I do, questioning the ghost that dwells in the corner of the un-inhabited part of my audaciously large room?

I gave up of-course.

26th day of May, the year 2020. 18-hundred hours into the day.

I can feel it. I can feel it! My fibres, my tissue, my muscle becoming weak and flabby. This is the power that the isolation holds against us that rely on sweat and chlorine ridden gyms. What do I do, questioning the witch that rests under my ludicrously large desk? I went back to sleep of-course.

Lockdown has been many things such as challenging, emotional rollercoaster. I have learnt to appreciate what I have as we all try to get through the rough times facing us all. Trying to keep my motivation going, keeping myself strong and positive.

I have been filling my time with various things. One of which was doing some baking with my mum. We both thought it would be a joy to have some quality mother and daughter time. We made mouth-watering jam tarts and checkers. Mum loved the idea because she wanted some company as she was stressed with what is going on!

I thought long and hard about the struggles that the NHS is going through, putting themselves at risk whilst caring for the devastated people who have the tragic virus. I drew a picture of a rainbow to show my support and I have been appreciating the keyworkers every Thursday at 8:00pm by going outside and clapping for them.

I am lucky that I have a gym in my house and I have been working out every day, keeping myself fit during my time in lockdown. Unfortunately, that’s the only way I can exercise because sadly I am considered a vulnerable person.

I had some chill time just re-watching my favourite childhood series. This brought back happy memories.

I am blessed that I can communicate to friends and family.  I decided to chat with them to see how they are? It was brilliant to make them laugh and brighten their days.

Suddenly It happens. Lock Down begins, without any warning or prior knowledge. The world gets shut off for ever or it feels that way, all life in the world stops and goes silent like it is always night-time. Suddenly it feels like all human rights have been thrown out the window and forgotten about. Its like we are back in the caveman era or world war 2 era. No freedom, No Rights. The whole world caves in on itself leaving no air to breathe or light to see. It feels like always night-time. The only smell that can be smelt is the simple yet strong smell of the house and its inhabitants. The many thoughts crowd and fill my mind to the breaking point, Will this lockdown ever truly end? Or will it go on indefinitely or will we one day see the warm, peaceful sun shining down on all of us? And will I ever get to see my loved ones and friends ever again and if our last meetup was our one last goodbye?

But one must stay positive in times like these,   one must not cave in to these thoughts and ruin all the progress this country has made to get rid of this invisible threat and one day we all will see our friends and family again - but only if we accept the lockdown and what it stands for. Let us work together to wait out this nightmare and the world will thank us for our sacrifices. One day there will be no death, no pain, no misery. But that can only happen if we as a population stay inside