As is the case with many of us, my holiday this year, where I would have been doing a road trip around Scotland with my boyfriend, has been cancelled. I would have been climbing Ben Nevis, Ben Lomond and doing lots of kayaking and exploring.
The global situation over the passed few months as flipped everyones lives upside down - but none of us will have experienced things in the same way. Have you continued to work, or stayed home? Do you have a house with a garden and space to play, or are you in a small apartment and cannot get outside? Are you alone or do you have people you live with? Are you still into, or have you had enough of quizzes? We’ve all seen the same media news, listened to the numbers from across the UK and the world being compared, clapped the NHS together, but as with many situations we’ve all had our own things going on, and our own ways of dealing with things. Everyones story will be different through this same united situation. This is my story (the short version)!
I am lucky enough to call Alpe d’Huez in the French Alps my home during the winter, and when the lockdown came there was no where in the world I would rather have been.
Rules and procedure were different in France to the UK; but the same message rang through - stay home, stay safe. So we did. Our busy French village went from a classic packed out ski resort in the middle of the winter season to a snow filled ghost town within only a few days. Our village was like the pictures you may have seen of capital cities and public areas around the world, deserted, except snow-covered of course. What should have been the hype of winter emptied almost instantly. Shops, bar, restaurants and everything else closed straight away. Tourists and seasonal staff left quickly. Anyone like us that stayed, stayed home. The resort went quiet.
It didn’t take long for the lockdown rules to be made clear to us - we could not ski tour, ride bikes, climb, or do any of the usual mountain sports we would being doing - we had one hour a day that could go out for, and we must remain close to home, basically only using your feet!
We went on daily walks and runs to get out of the house and found whatever we could to pass the time, and keep active of course. Have a look at the video I’ve uploaded here for a short montage of 3 months worth of time fillers as the lockdown went from super strict to slowly opening back up!
I’m writing this at the end of a monumental day, we went to a restaurant for lunch, the first time since this has all begun! The restaurant was in open air and quiet, with only two other tables taken in a place that should have seated 80 odd people! We sat well apart from the friends we were meeting, masks on until we ate, anti-bac gel used regularly, and care taken when handling cards to make payment. An odd scenario but we were thankful to be able to order food and drinks with friends again!
Usually at the end of the winter we head south and begin summer sports, usually the day the lifts close. Because of this situation we’ve seen the snowy spring weather warm up the mountains as we turn to summer. We’ve seen the snow melt and the ground underneath grow green again. We’ve seen the animals taking over the place once again; marmots, chamois are out in their masses and cows are being moved back across the once snow covered fields.
I know how lucky we are to have been “stuck” here though this whole thing. We’ve been active throughout the whole thing (even if it was only an hour a day at the beginning), plus being such a warm sunny spring we’ve been lucky to have outside space to chill and wait it all out.
Stay Alert, control the virus, save lives - and if you can do it safely #getyouractiveon!