Lock down has been tough, but some of you have used it as a chance to revive old activities or learn something completely new.

Either way, there’s more to these activities than just passing the time.

As Melanie who volunteers at the Treherbert Shed put it; “When the lock down came I thought my anxiety would come back, but the Facetime quizzes and phone calls from the Shed staff have been great.” How many of us did Facetime quizzes with friends from work before lock down!

“ I’ve gone for long walks up Clydach lakes” Melanie continues. “ It’s beautiful up there and I feed the ducks and ducklings. I’ve also lifted my morale by keeping myself busy in the garden, which has kept my mind active. But I can’t wait to re-join the team up at The Shed.”

Melanie keeping busy on the garden
Mark + here’s one I mended earlier.

For others it’s been a chance to learn a completely new skill. Mark at the Reuse Centre, for example, has been learning how to strip down and service coffee machines.

Meanwhile, Lynsey in Treherbert has done an online course in metaphysics (a branch of philosophy that deals with abstract concepts like what is identity, time, being – and yes we had to look that one up online). In contrast she’s also been learning healthy recipes but “what I’m most proud of is my daily walking in the park. It has kept me sane. I’m doing four miles a day but aiming at 10.”

We’ve adapted well to the internet very quickly. Wastesavers Volunteer Coordinator Saffy, for example, joined an online choir. “It’s been brilliant – although I must admit i laughed for the majority of it.”

If you’ve got children then the home schooling thing is new territory. “I’ve had to help the kids with their home schooling which can be quite stressful,” according to Saffy.

“They miss their friends and the teacher definitely has more control than I ever will! I found that they were more interested in baking cakes, so they have been learning some of my favourite cake recipes.”

The point here is that it may seem just like baking a cake but there’s a lot of science in there, following instructions, observations skills etc. Plus its a skill they might actually use in later life.

So while the lock down has closed doors, for many it has opened new ones we were perhaps too busy to notice before.

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