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  • Writer's pictureBob Lepper


Lockdown happened at a less than ideal time in my life. Following retirement, I had slowly but surely begun to find activities and interests in my life. My experience of lockdown was

that it put on hold many things and I often felt that things had been removed and replaced

with nothing. Overall it has been a difficult time but rather than be negative in these thoughts, I will try to be positive - or failing that at least to be as honest as possible!

My wife's work meant that we, as a family, had to be hugely conscientious in adhering to

Government guidance. My oldest son normally alternates between living with us and his

partner’s family. As his partner was in the group being shielded he chose to stay with him so

we did not see him for nearly three months. My youngest son had to be reminded from time

to time about boundaries. My oldest son’s godmother passed away having contracted the

virus while in hospital. We watched the funeral service online and the lady leading the

service did an excellent job in describing her life and personality.

During lockdown there were many things I missed (Starbucks, libraries, cinema, TV football

and Rat Records in Camberwell to name a few). Getting involved in the University of the

Third Age had to be put on hold. I trimmed my own hair and ate lots of ice cream. I binged on TV box sets (Line of Duty, Peep Show and the wonderful Normal People). I am still working my way through The Sopranos. I did not read or listen to as much music as I thought I would. On You Tube I watched several documentaries about Angela Davis and the Black

Panthers and I convinced myself an American revolution was imminent!

I found the weekly Clap for the NHS very meaningful though I was disappointed that (as far

as I could tell) nobody on my road joined my son and I in taking the knee on a Wednesday

evening. On several occasions I was able to distribute items from the fantastic Copleston

Shelf to people being supported by Christians Against Poverty. Overall I did not experience

the greater sense of community sections of the media were very keen to talk about.

On occasions I felt sad to think of all the people who had died and their loved ones. In my

isolation (a strong underlying emotion) I wondered about all the people without food and

shelter and human contact. I felt angry (and still do) about the lack of joined up thinking

which led to so many being discharged from hospital wards to die in care homes.

I did lots of jigsaws and collages and took up buying newspapers,rotating between the

Guardian,the Times and the Daily Telegraph. The latter, one day, contained an article I

disagreed with and I sent a letter giving my perspective. Two days later my letter was

published. What was odd was that I got an email saying my letter had been received but not

that it had been published - presumably the belief was that I must be a regular reader of their



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