Experiencing Lockdown Amidst Covid-19 – An Outsider Inside View

By Charles Leyman Kachitsa

In mid March this year, talking about people in the United Kingdom (UK), one day we woke up to the realisation that we all had lost our door keys, with almost all individual households locked inside their houses except for those considered essential workers. Covid-19 became not a matter for humour or segregation but so real.

Good news is that this week on Monday we finally found our keys after being in doors for 12 weeks (3 months). It was not easy but we are here and thank God for that, we can now tell the story of what happened in the first half of the year 2020. What an experience to have lived through it, condolences to all families who lost their loved ones during the period.

So some people in far off countries lucky to have escaped the sting of the Covid-19 virus were asking what it was like in lockdown? I could answer; imagine being put inside a maximum security facility with your children wanting to know all what is happening outside and with their schools, imagine for once hating to see the news on television and or any other current affairs news channel. Imagine not wearing shoes and or your most decent cloths for three months period not because of sickness but because you are locked indoor. Imagine talking repeatedly stories to your family they have already heard you tell them many times before, imagine hating to hear any voices or knock on your doorstep in fact avoiding to see even your parents, relatives or friends visit. Imagine not wanting to touch any surface or anything at all, avoiding all handshaking though they say, ‘love is in the handshaking’. Imagine not trusting the air you are breathing and the water in your taps. Imagine being afraid that you will run out of food and you will have nowhere to buy any. Finally imagine anticipating the uncertainty and the change coming to the lives of people and world order. Each one who experienced has a story to tell.

Lockdown Hair and beards

During this period we learnt new words like lockdown, mute, unmute, Zoom was the popular one, so was and now is ‘online meetings’. Cars not speaking about shoes went all this period without being used. Men grew hair they proudly displayed not because they wanted to, but for lack of where to properly cut it. Home learning was the norm for the elite schools, not every school. Shopping for food was a headache as one had to make sure they have enough time because of the long queues and the shopping policies of only letting two people in no matter the space in the shop. Not to mention the empty shelves so one would not be sure they will find what they wanted. Apparently we also realised the importance of the sun, it is true now proven that one can go blind if not exposed to the sun or outdoors for a long period. we as a household ‘personally’ occupied ourselves by reading a lot of books, watched movies in the night, talked to friends/ relatives on the phone, attended church online and a lot of laughing to while the days.

One of the weirdest things was that just like in dark episodes of people’s life, talking about yester years; any member of a house going out was treated with suspicion as doubting to whether he/ she is not carrying the virus taken from wherever they had gone upon return. Not to mention the need to sleep with ones hand on the wash sink with hand sanitiser all over, being washed just to make sure to kill the virus if contacted.

According to statistics in the UK two major items got highlighted; domestic violence accelerated as people became bored with each other in their homes therefore reminding each other of wounds best forgotten. This was evidenced by an increase in calls to the emergency domestic violence reporting line and the police. On the internet it is said one word got a lot of search hits and that is ‘Prayer,’ with more specifically asking google; ‘How to pray’. Suddenly faith in God became important and it is what perhaps this period has left behind; a people with more questions than answers but with one understanding that the Creator is real, God is real. We all have a story to tell.