Lockdown 3: This Time It’s Serious
With the beginning of term 2, I was greeted by final essay deadlines, a new timetable, and one huge new reading list. This was all to be expected. But what was not to be expected was another lockdown. Well, it certainly could’ve been predicted. And when I say unexpected, I guess I really mean I didn’t want to face the truth that such a course of events was going to happen. Alas, Lockdown 3: This Time It’s Serious is upon us. Now, one could argue that Lockdown 2: Electric Boogaloo wasn’t really a lockdown, or that Lockdown 2: Electric Boogaloo never really ended, but I’m gonna let the historians of the future decide whether that was the case, and they can cite me and this blog when such a matter is at hand.
What I feel we can all agree on, however, is that this current term is going to look like no other that has come before. With a number of students staying where they are to lockdown at home as opposed to going back to Warwick (I am one such student), there’s uncertainty and a lot of questions floating around. There’s a mantra you may have heard throughout your life. I know I’ve heard it spouted from numerous routines from stand up comedians (they needed new material), writers (apparently they give anyone on Twitter a book deal these days) and blogs much like this (I like to think I’m self aware enough to know this information won’t lead to an epiphany), and it goes a bit like this: life is just us (people) navigating through the world based on what those who came before did and learning from such people and others around us. If there is one silver lining to this current event, this unappealing start to 2021, it’s that we’re all doing this for the first time. The pioneers have yet to be found and named. The advice yet to be written and preached.
To maybe make this a little more personal: just before Lockdown 2 occurred – in the era which I’m sure won’t bother Robert Smith if I name it ‘Inbetween Days’ to quote The Cure – I visited a pub with a few friends. The pub at question will remain anonymous, but it’s safe to say that it wasn’t our usual establishment, even if it clearly was for some of its patrons. We got chatting to a few people, and one gentleman offered the following advice: “this life is like an apprenticeship, and we’re all apprentices. All we can learn is what others teach us, which in turn is what they were taught. No one truly knows or understands what is going on, so just learn and enjoy yourselves.” Now that isn’t verbatim, but considering the circumstances it was rather profound, if a little intoxicated, advice. In a moment of time such as ours, the idea that we’re all apprentices has never been so welcome. It was a moment I feel will be rewarding in the future, and I’m sure I will return to it’s well of anecdotes for many blog pieces to come.
If I may repeat a moment from my first blog post, I realise that once again this scenario may not have been the ideal circumstance to return to University – if we can truly call it returning at all – yet to once again quote Boethius, “history is a wheel. “Inconstancy is my very essence,” says the wheel. “Good times pass away, but then so do the bad. Mutability is our tragedy, but it’s also our hope. The worst of times, like the best, are always passing away.” I can’t say I know what lies past lockdown, or how long the heat of the current times will last. But I do know that it will pass – one day that cool breeze will come blowing back.