I am sure that everyone has faced challenges over the course of the pandemic, which seems to have now taken over most of a year now. And while I have struggled with staying motivated, a key part of what has kept me, and many others I am sure, occupied, is school. For adults, I am sure that work has served a similar purpose, however, for the older generation, I expect that daily life has become much more monotonous with the restrictions which have been imposed. In order to gain more insight into this, I interviewed my grandmother, Catharine Skipworth.

The first and most logical question to ask was how she had found being in lockdown over the last year, and the first thought which sprung to mind was “lonely”. She then specified “the second and third lockdowns more so” this was due to the first lockdown being almost novel, and one had more energy to do things, and it being spring also helped with this. I then enquired as to why it had been more difficult in the second and third lockdowns. The response to this was that the “winter has been long and boring, making the daily routine more difficult. I think that my generation have been unnerved or even frightened about the emphasis of what Covid was and is doing to people of our age, meaning that we have been even more restricted. Even more so, because I live on my own and don’t speak to anyone all day”.

Following on from this, I asked “what has your biggest difficulty been during the pandemic?”. She responded, “Not being able to see people. I am fortunate now though that I am in a bubble with others. It was particularly difficult over Christmas, when family members were ill and I couldn’t see them. I also don’t like not feeling useful, and there are less things that I can do now”. In addition to this she also said that she was finding it difficult being in the same four walls all of the time and that a daily walk was helping to provide a change of scene. However, she did add that there were things that are making lockdown easier, such as phone calls and FaceTimes.

Then, given the UK vaccine success so far, I asked her about her experience in receiving the vaccine, and if she had been apprehensive beforehand. She responded that she had been “slightly nervous as it was made very quickly, and normally vaccines evolve over a longer period of time, however it was recommended to be the best way forward”. She continued on and stated that “fear of Covid was enough for much of our age group to get it” as it was scary to imagine getting Covid, adding that she thought that it needed to be taken seriously. A key point for getting the vaccine, was, in her opinion, that many people have lost someone due to the virus, and she was grateful that she hadn’t directly had that experience and would like to keep it that way.

I then enquired as to her opinion on whether the country’s leaders could or should have acted differently. Her response was that it is “such a unique experience, and there was no right or wrong answer as no one knew what it would be like, as no one had been through it before, and so there was no way of preparing for it. Maybe there should have been restrictions on people coming into the country earlier on, although I appreciate that this would have been a difficult thing to do”. Finally, on a more optimistic note, I asked about what she was most looking forward to doing when everything returns to normal and her main point was being able to feel safe when going into other people’s houses, and the annual family trip to Cornwall.

Overall, we need to ensure that we stay as safe as possible, whilst continuing to live our lives, so hopefully as soon as possible, our lives can return to normal!