• Matthew Couper

A lot about nothing, the diary of a lockdown dad

Updated: 21 hours ago

Lockdown 2.0 - week 1

“Guess who’s back, back again...”

So let’s recap.


I started my original lockdown diary on Facebook back in March, before the official lockdown.


My daughter, Phoebe, was ill and we were told to self-isolate for 14 days, so I thought I’d keep a record of our fortnight in self-isolation – I kept it going for six months!

A lot of not much happened…although my brother having Covid and being admitted to hospital was a big deal and being a stay-at-home pretend teacher was a nightmare.


A few people on Facebook wanted me to carry on - by a few I mean 10 at the most and I'm probably being generous - so when we went back into lockdown I said I'd bring in back. 


Have to say this one feels like lockdown light, I mean the schools are open, streets are busy, people still don't like wearing masks, maybe I'm just adjusting to being indoors all the time.


I stopped my diary entries on day 175 (roughly) when Phoebe went back to school. Naively I kind of thought that might be it, but here we are again.

Good news is schools are open, so at the moment there won’t be any posts berating home schooling. Strangely this actually makes me feel like I’m cheating at lockdown, but found that asking Phoebe to do her homework has the same effect.


Back in October Phoebe had her tenth birthday just after London entered tier 2, which meant the celebrations had to be reimagined and just didn’t live up to her expectations. This was because in tier 2 you can't mix with other households and having parents is embarrassing enough without them trampolining next to you instead of your friends.

Phoebe did get a phone - yes, it does feel wrong - however, she actually uses it to speak to her friends and watch tick tock (I’ve played around with phone settings, so hoping it’s all ok, plus she’s mainly interested in cat videos, aren’t we all)


The truth is as she can't play outside, her having a phone is wonderful, as she can connect with all the people she can't meet in person - I guess that's the idea behind phones isn't it?

She’s also discovered something called “Among Us”, (Roblox is so May)

Halloween was saved by neighbours coming together to plan a scaled down trick or treat on the road. It was scaled down in terms of houses she could visit, not in terms of sweets, so many sweets.

Phoebe had just got a place in gymnastics squad thanks to our amazing neighbour advocating on our behalf. This means Phoebe going twice a week for two hours a time, naturally that has stopped, so I guess we’ll go back to using the spare room as a substitute gym (without the safety measures and qualified teaching, I am not a gym teacher)

Covid is still around and has claimed the life of the wife of someone I know, which is truly awful. I am really worried that some people seem to think about the older generation are dispensable.

I have to say that today (lockdown part 2) there isn’t much difference to yesterday. I went for a jog (still slow and still hate it), the streets were busy and in my local co-op people still aren’t wearing masks.

Loads of little firework displays going off, but I do miss the main display on Blackheath. That said I have been entrained by the fireworks of the US elections, intrigued about the idea that you don’t have to count all the votes. Wonder if I can use this on the lottery, just get 2 numbers and then say “you can stop now I’ve won”.

About the author: Matthew lives in Hither Green with his partner and daughter.

He's been working in the arts for far longer than his CV suggests. You can check out his work on his website here.

He's currently trying to re-write and play (again) and desperately trying to live in the now (and failing miserably!)


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