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Walk in my Shoes23rd May 2020

Lockdown life for a learning facilitator

To honour Mental Health Awareness Week and to encourage our staff, volunteers, and organisations we work closely with to pay more attention to the present (aka mindfulness), we’ve asked a few of them to write a journal post and diary a day in lock down. These blogs will provide a snapshot of the everyday lives, experiences and wellbeing of our people.

Pip Blackmore
Learning Facilitator

I am woken up by my tabby cat most mornings now instead of my alarm, that is one big change to my life.

I have never been a morning person but I miss the routine of getting up early, eating my breakfast, talking to same set of people I see at the bus stop, sitting on the bus and listening to Smiths.

I even miss walking up Dock Road and saying hello to the same people I pass in the mornings, like the older gentlemen who dresses like a teddy boy with his perfectly sculptured quiff, waving to the guard as I go through main gate, walking past the big figure head just beyond Main Gate and giving him tap on the shoulder. I like doing that as my Mum said she had a tradition as child that when her Grandad talked to the guard on the gate of Dockyard she would have to run and tap the figure and come back as fast as she could for luck (it also makes me chuckle as I suspect it was a ruse to keep her quiet whilst he had good chat with his mate.)

I even miss the wind that blows off the water and hits you as enter the yard. I always fancy you can smell the salt water like you do the sea . I miss seeing my colleagues and looking forward to the day ahead of teaching children and exploring the dockyard.

Thankfully, there’s technology. Though my little sister said isn’t it funny that social media has for a long time received a lot of negative press, but now people have turned to it for support and encourage it. She is right, I have turned to it. I use it to talk to my colleagues and friends that I am missing so much now and to pursue my hobbies.

I have been taking art classes and listening to live music which has been a wonderful distraction, without such distraction I am not sure how I would have coped. I even took an online tour of HMS Cavalier as I am missing her so much.

I find a lot of solace in being outside especially when the weather’s good. I have always enjoyed nature and walking so that is a great comfort to me and satisfy my bug to explore since lockdown. I miss the ability to explore new places and towns, something I love doing normally.

Find out more about Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust’s initiatives for Mental Health Awareness.

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