Tick Tock

Photo: We discovered a footpath under the famous bridge with no one around

Just like everybody else we’re counting down the time when we will have a little more freedom. Life for us in lockdown isn’t too bad. We’re used to each other’s company and we’re a lot better off than most.

We’ve tried to use the time to help out. Ever wanted to do more but bureaucracy got in the way? The old normal is still with us.

NHS Volunteer Responder programme

As soon as it was announced, we signed up. The technology hasn’t always worked as well as we hoped. It took a while to get Colin some tasks as his location showed as being in the Gulf of Guinea, off the coast of Ghana. Once Colin was safely re-located back to London a few tasks came in. On his bike, he was out buying food and collecting medicine for older people in isolation. Cycling and helping others, what’s not to like?

It hasn’t gone so well for Jan. She’s frustrated as she’s only received three requests for help. As they were from people in St Leonard’s-On-Sea, Nottingham and Yeovil they were all a little too far to help with the shopping.

Colin got a request yesterday from someone 300m away. At least Jan is off the mark as we combined our exercise walk with buying some food for a Barbican resident in isolation. We received this message of thanks, which makes the frustration worthwhile:

NHS Blood donation

We’ve both re-signed up to give blood. We did it at the same time using the same process. They responded to Colin, his first appointment is the 6th May. Nothing for Jan, not even an acknowledgement. Jan’s beginning to think it’s her.

Food bank Collection

One of our cycling friends, Cliff, has been collecting food from local bakeries and greengrocers at the end of the day’s trading and taking to a community food bank. I joined Cliff and a few others. We then publicised the scheme within Islington Cycling Club (ICC) and we now have a rota of enough riders that we only have to do it once a week each. Great to see so many cyclists coming forward to help.

Colin & Jyde doing the rounds in Muswell Hill, Highgate and Swain’s Lane.

We’ve also been looking after ourselves.

Jan has started running again after more than a year off with injury. She’s out every other day, re-doing the Couch to 5K programme she did in 2017. She’s also back to recording her running adventures at jancanrun.com.

Having bought a trainer just before they sold out, Colin is combining short, local rides in London, with training rides on the balcony. The trainer means that Colin can join virtual rides with both ICC and the Pansèrs in Italy. colincanride.com

We would normally be in Italy by now, but we just have to be patient. We will have to wait until the borders are open and we can drive through France to Le Marche. Tick tock.

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