Day 3 – the worst half hour yet

The worst half hour yet.

I decided yesterday afternoon – on a whim – to try a backyard run. Other people have done it, why shouldn’t I?

I shouldn’t have done it.

It was half an hour of boredom, extreme concentration, hectic effort and very little reward.

Boredom because it was the same thing over and over and over and over again. Concentration because there were trip hazards everywhere, one of which was mobile and kept barking at me and trying to eat my shoes while I was trying to run. Effort because there were so many turns and obstacles that my average stride length turned out to be just 0.65m. That’s against my average of 1.12m on a normal run. So despite what that very dodgy looking 9:30/km average seems to suggest, there was an awful lot of hard work going into getting myself around the front and back gardens. And little reward because all I felt at the end was hot, bothered and miserable. There was no post-run glow or exaltation. No feeling of achievement. There was just one endorphin. I wanted thousands.

Still, I did it, and I’ll likely do a couple more over the next three weeks, because even though it’s not very pleasant, it does still get the heart going and it does still get the Discovery points.


UPDATE: Experts don’t like it either.

Day 1

Day 1 of the lockdown. First impressions: it’s quiet. Now I know that may sound blindingly obvious, but it’s startling just how quiet it is. Other people have said that it’s magical to be able to hear the birds singing, but all I’ve heard is pool pumps, a lawnmower and some screaming kids.

We’ve had about ten cars go past our place this morning. I have no idea if they are out and about legally or not. One guy just went past in a Qashqai with all the windows down. He was wearing a mask and gloves and was reading a book propped up against his steering wheel while driving.
I’m pretty sure that’s still illegal.

To be honest, nothing has really changed from any other day that we might have voluntarily spent at home. I guess the change comes when I would have walked out of the front gate and gone for a run, or taken the beagle out (not in an assassination kind of way) or wandered down to Pick n Pay for some milk.

Social media remains really anti-social, with more people than ever finding crap to support whichever political, racial or moral narrative they’ve chosen to follow. I dip in for the latest news and then dip out again very quickly. Sadly, given the fluidity of the situation and my thirst for information, it’s something I feel that I have to do fairly frequently.

I need to find a way to only get the news and avoid the rest of the nonsense.

Finally for today, I have a plan to try to take a photograph each day while we’re all stuck inside (or inside our property, at least). Some will be snapshots, some will be more technical – when I’m not busy with other jobs and I can find the inspiration.¬† I’m going to put them into an album on Flickr, but I haven’t made it yet. Check back tomorrow for the link and to see what disappointing image I’ve rushed through this evening.

I sure know how to sell an idea, don’t I?

Keep well, stay home, wash your hands.


From midnight tonight, South  Africa is on lockdown.

( a word first coined in this year…)

Meaning that unless we have to go out to buy food or seek medical attention, we have at stay at home. The full rules are here, but for the majority of us, that one sentence sums it up quite nicely.

Bizarrely, there will be no alcohol or tobacco products sold during the 21 days (not legally, anyway), and so huge queues – with no social distancing – formed outside those kind of shops this morning. It does seem bizarre to put the population into lockdown like some sort of guinea pig in some dystopian experiment and then not allow them to access any of their usual goto coping mechanisms.

This will not end well.

Not that it was going to end well anyway.

I went for a last (out and about) run this morning, and got some last minute chocolate in to placate Mrs 6000, just in case there was a late rush.

We managed a late afternoon family dog walk. With the family dog.
The school field was chained up already. We had to walk around the block instead. The beagle was disappointed at the lack of Hadeda-chasing opportunities.

And now, I guess this is it. We stay home unless we have a genuine reason to go out. The situation is changing every hour, every day. But as it stands at the moment, I can’t see three weeks being enough. Nowhere near. Six or eight, maybe.

But who knows? See you all on the other side*.



* blogging is classed as an “essential service” and will continue throughout the SA lockdown.