Let me begin by saying I’m not okay with coronavirus killing over a quarter of a million people, breaking up families, disrupting children’s education and imprisoning the innocent & vulnerable. None of that’s cool.
However, having been in lockdown for like 8 weeks, there are a bunch of ways the UK has changed that I would argue are better than before. Here’s some of them:
CO2 Levels are down
It’s forecasted that CO2 levels will fall by over 5% in 2020. That’ll be the largest annual reduction on record. This is partly due to all of us becoming pedestrians again (something I’ve personally really enjoyed). Not to mention we don’t use aeroplanes anymore.
Why only 5% though? No flying, barely any cars on the road, industries coming to a stand still and only 5 damn percent? It comes down to how these forecasts are put together. The economy is set to rebound towards the end of the year un-doing most of the great work that’s been done. In order to save the economy, does everything really have to go back to the way it was?
On the third day of lockdown I went to sit in the sun in my back garden and didn’t hear a single car on the road that passes by my house for over 20 minutes. Let me assure you: that’s really unusual for this road.
What I heard instead were the birds tweeting and the bamboo on our garden boundary blowing in the wind. It felt like the countryside had been brought in to the suburbs.
I’ve worked from home for over 3 years now and have been talking about the benefits of it for most of that time. Before lockdown, most people have had trouble convincing their employers to let them work remotely. In a lot of cases it was simply “not possible” to do their job remotely.
Shock, horror though – it is possible. It always was and always should have been. Why insist that an employee drives the to the same place and back every day? It’s stupid.
Remote working isn’t for everyone. Some people need a break from their day to day life at home or can’t concentrate with their kids around. But for those of us who love the remote working lifestyle – lockdown’s shown employers that people are quite capable of getting the job done without an office to go to.
As a result of both working remotely and having nothing else to do or spend our money on, we’ve all found ourselves spending a lot more time with the people we live with. And for a lot of people that’s their family.
Lockdown has given us the gift of a little more time to spend with the people under our roof. I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many family bicycle trips…
Speaking of bicycle trips, notice how everyone exercises outside now? I know most of these people were going to the gym before lockdown and it’s also kind of coincidental because we’re coming into spring. Still though. It’s nice to see so many people exercising outside now.
For me personally, lockdown has forced me outdoors more regularly. It’s disconnected me from people socially, but it’s re-connnected me with nature and I think that’s something we’ve all been lacking for quite some time.
I guess I’m just not so sure we should be in such a massive rush to get back to the old normal.