Still in lockdown? Let’s grow a beanstalk!

Sunday 26th April 2020

Prime Minister's Letter
Well this all looks very official.

Today was a lazy sort of Sunday mainly consisting of turnip buying and toys and nothing much else happening. Still not able to go out (in the normal sense of the word), the most exciting moment of the day was when jef stood on a carefully consealed stegosaurus and shouted (I think for the fourth time this week) that there was too much junk on the floor and ALL of the toys were going out for the bin men! …and he meant it this time!! After this hilarious episode I decided that with not much happening indoors (and having recently received our offical COVID-19 letter from the Government which had been sent to all UK households), I would write an update about what is happening outdoors. We’d now been locked down for five weeks now and were meant to stay at home, except for a small number of exceptions;

  1. We can shop for ‘basic necessities’, but this should be an infrequently as possible.
  2. We can seek medical advice or treatment if needed.
  3. We can travel for work, but are encouraged to work from home if we are able to.
  4. We can go out once a day to exercise.

    If exercising or shopping we are allowed to be with members of our households, but we can’t meet up with anyone else. All social events have been cancelled (and people mostly seem to be sticking to this) and all our schools are closed, along with pubs, clubs, restaurants, gyms, playgrounds, libraries and all non-essential shops. Essential shops are classified as; food shops, hardware stores, laundrettes, newsagents, pet shops, petrol stations, pharmacies and post offices. Nationally, there seems to have been some confusion about what constitutes exercise or whether you are allowed to travel to exercise, but for us it seemed pretty simple. We could go out for medicine or food (this has been largely dictated by our need for milk), we could walk to the field near our house for a ‘runaround’ with warp-girl and warp-boy and I should largely be working from home, except for when I was needed on site. That evening, George Eustice (the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) announced that Prime Minister Boris Johnson would be returning to work on Monday morning, exactly a month after testing positive for COVID-19 and needing a seven night stay in hospital. He also said it was currently too early to ease the lockdown restrictions, suggesting we had a while to go yet before we could return to some semblance of normality…

    Monday 27th April 2020
    warp-girl’s BEAN STALKING around the garden all afternoon.
    Monday was much more exciting as (in addition to jef’s daily toy rant) I had plenty of work to do and warp-girl was tasked with more 2D and 3D shape exploration and making a beanstalk! First we had a bit of a Finders Keepers-style* hunt for 3D shapes around the house and talked about what their 2D counterparts were called. Next we set about creating a beanstalk master piece! With a cardboard tube, some string, some paper and a pot of green paint, it was a scene reminiscent of a Blue Peter make**. In the afternoon, the beanstalk got a little out of control and we had to move it to the garden where warp-girl was able to climb it. At the top she found a golden harp (it was made of materials suspiciously similar to those we had used to make the beanstalk earlier in the day), a piggy that laid colourful coins (…it was the best we could do) and I really hoped that anything else that was lurking at the top stayed there!

    * Kids of the 90s will probably remember Finders Keepers, the CITV children’s gameshow in which host Neil Buchanan would lead contestants around a wacky house and encourage them to trash rooms to find particular objects in order to win prizes.
    ** Most British people will probably know of Blue Peter, a BBC programme which first aired in 1957 and that is now the longest running children’s TV show in the world!

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