An Outdoor Instructors Thoughts from Living in Lockdown | Part 1

We were all still being upbeat about the situation. I was still being flippant about it not lasting long or joking about it being the cure the planet needs.


An Outdoor Instructors thoughts from living in lockdown | part one…

What a crazy time to be alive.

The week before the storm…

It goes against every fibre in my being to stay indoors when the sun is shining.

I have spent years getting out and building experience doing the stuff I love. Admittedly a lot of this was career orientated always striving for the next qualification. But this is just how I justified it. In reality it meant I have a solid excuse to do the thing I have always loved… Messing about outdoors.

The week leading up to our current situation was a good one for me, I had been getting out in the evenings preparing for my ML re-assessment refreshing my night nav skills and I had been lucky enough to spend a couple days sea kayaking down in Dartmouth on Sea Kayak Coach training. We were out on the water when things really started to ramp up, people were self isolating and there was increasing pressure from awarding bodies to stop unnecessary activity.

That all seems like a long time ago now….

The start of the ‘situation’…

As things began to escalate, I made the decision that the trip up to North Wales wasn’t necessary travel. As things were changing daily, I felt that focusing on family was the most important thing to do. 

I didn’t want my wife – Jen, or daughter – Skye to get poorly when I wasn’t around to help out; a few days later Mountain Training cancelled all courses anyway.

It was around this time that social distancing started to be strongly encouraged which meant that I suddenly had some time off to spend at home.

As a family, whenever we can, we love spending time together. Jen has recently gone back to work, with the cost of childcare as it is, we have had to split our days off to help minimise the amount of time Skye spends in nursery. So days together have become even more special. 

Following the social distancing rules came easily and we had a lovely couple of days.

Reacting to lockdown…

Being grounded indefinitely is something I’ve never experienced; especially as my Mum never chose to use it as a punishment when i was growing up. So a strict telling off and a “I’m not angry just disappointed” was; and still is the best way to make me do anything, it has been awhile since I earned one of those though

So as soon as I found myself, correctly and necessarily grounded by Boris and the folks in government trying their hardest to safeguard lives, my mind quickly turned onto what I could do to keep busy.

We live in a small rented house out in the sticks in Dorset. Over the years we have fallen into the trap of the “its only rented” mentality so have put little effort into the garden. We inherited a Rockery straight from the 90’s and plenty of clay based chalky soil which is hard to get stuff growing in. Since having a new family and still having an addiction for getting out and about, the garden has made its way even further down our priority list.

As soon as we got the news about Lockdown we suddenly realised our neglect of the garden was a blessing in disguise and we had a nice big project to keep us busy.

Outdoor Instructors life during lockdown. Walking and social distancing with a baby.

Keep an eye out for part two of Alex’s blog next week. WHAT will happen in the garden? WILL he break any social distancing rules? WILL the washing up get done? Tune in to find out… 

28 March 2020 by Owen Senior

It goes against every fibre in my being to stay indoors when the sun is shining….

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