London Lockdown

The streets and squares are empty here in London. It’s quite surreal for a city that was packed with people only a week ago. I know that they’re in the houses and flats somewhere, living their lives behind the windows, but it feels deserted.

London is now officially in lockdown. Bars, restaurants, cafes, gyms and businesses closed. Very limited public transport. No cars on the road.

Buying food is now a problem. We have some stores of dried and frozen food, but have no idea how or when we will be able to buy more. Online food services are overloaded and either suspended or not taking on new customers due to demand. The local Tesco supermarket has been stripped back to the bare shelves through panic buying.

I have bread flour, and when my current loaf runs out I will bake bread at home. Sourdough, flatbreads, rolls, scones. As long as I can source flour we won’t starve. I know how to make meals from scratch and cook with the dried pulses and grains that we always have on hand, but I do wonder how many of the generation who don’t cook this way are going to cope.

Perhaps this will be a reset for humanity. Maybe this will act as a very real warning that we have lived disposably, wastefully and with excess for too long. I believe that we will get through this, but I also think that what we will be left with when we do will be a very different world.

On the Skye build front- it looks as if work should start in the next few weeks at last, subject to contracts next week. If we still have builders who are able and allowed to work, that is. I can’t think in chunks of more than a week at a time at the moment so where we go from here is very uncertain.

Both Hugh and I wish that we were a year further along and had the resources of the croft behind us for isolation, but there’s no merit in that thinking. We are here and we need to make the best of our current reality. All this has done is to re-strengthen my resolve to be more independent – to grow vegetables, keep a well stocked pantry of essentials, and build the life skills to get through such times as these as easily as possible.

6 Replies to “London Lockdown”

  1. Your attitude is a good one.

    Like you I always have dried beans, flours and grains on hand and am accustomed to scratch cooking, but still am very dependent upon the grocery store/local farmers/Amazon. I definitely learned from this too about being more prepared in ways that I am able.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. We’re not under any lock downs here, though many are being told to work from home, if they can, and a lot of businesses are reducing hours or, in the case of many restaurants, doing take out orders only, no dine in.

    I find it so very surreal. I’m told, in the city, there are greater issues with grocery store shelves being emptied by panic buying, including the meat counters, bread and fresh produce. In smaller towns like where we go to do our smaller shopping trips, it’s not been quite as much of an issue. In fact, people from the city are now going to small towns to do grocery shopping, because the big city stores are being cleaned out. I popped into the grocery store this morning, after dropping my daughter off at work (she works at a pharmacy, and she’s now down to only 2 days a week). The shelves were full of meats, bread, produce – but no toilet paper. White and whole wheat flour are gone, and all the different types of yeasts are gone. We normally do a big city shop once a month to stock up on things, since my husband’s disability payments come in once a month, and that’s what we live on. Hopefully, things will normalize over the next few weeks, or I’m not sure what we’ll be doing. It’s so much cheaper to buy basics in bulk in the city. If we have to buy locally, we won’t be able to stock up for the month properly.

    It’s not even that there is any shortage of these items. The producers are still producing just as much. The problem is the panic buying and stockpiling. As soon as a shipment comes in, those with the money (or room on the credit card) swoop in and buy it all. Even with stores limiting how much people can buy at one time. For now, we’re fine, but we have health issues in our household, and that sometimes means using more of some products, like toilet paper, than average. At some point, we’re going to need to do our normal restocking of such things. People panic buying is going to cause problems!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s a crazy, crazy situation. We have quite a lot of dried food (thankfully) and our local farm shop is still getting fresh produce, albeit at far more expensive prices than the supermarkets. But at least something is available. We’ve all just got to hang in there, because I suspect this is going to go on for a while.

    Liked by 1 person

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