Isolation Diary: Day 38 in Spain Lockdown

Monday 27th April 2020

Rio sitting on balcony morning in Benidorm

As the waves smashed and crashed against the shore, I knew a storm was brewing. Living by the sea has taught me that the sea will always tell you what’s going to happen. I know when it’ll rain, when it’ll be boiling and when it’ll storm. You start to notice the patterns until eventually one day you realise that you just know.

The sky was still a cloudy white and pretty bright and the sun was shining so there was no sign of the storm yet, but it was coming. It was just a matter of time, and waiting.

Stormy morning Benidorm

After I click schedule on my blog post, it’s time to start work for me. It’s always something different which is what I enjoy. One day it might be making advertising posters, another day it might be editing videos and another day might be writing tweets or pinning pins. I try not to spend more than 2 or 3 hours a day, as I’m only paid for an hour, but I always go over.

We had our bacon cobs and a cup of coffee for breakfast and then Alex headed off to work. I sat on the ottoman and watched the world outside. Much quieter than yesterday, I saw two children out in the varying times I’d sat there. It was back to being deserted. “The kids are all at school, aren’t they?”, of course they are, how did I not even think about that? We thought we might see all the kids go out to play once school had finished, but no. The Spanish families around here are on their kids about studying. They’re always telling me they’re not allowed out at weekends and they’re always studying, even if they don’t have an exam coming up. “Summer is our time to play”, they’d say. The difference here is that if a child fails a few subjects, they have to retake the entire year again. And it’s common. So kids don’t want to have to redo the school year. They do this whether you’re primary, secondary or college age.

My beautiful cavalier King Charles spaniel laying down

I set a new game up for Rio and he’s really good at it. I’ve started making a trail of treats but having him sit and watch me lay them out. I only say stay once or twice as I’m doing it and he sits and watches until I say “go get it” and off he runs. He does this really cute full speed acceleration but he knows he doesn’t need to go that fast really so then has to slow down and ends up being all legs. I’m biased, but he’s such a cute and clever dog.

The storm is coming benidorm beach

I did my abs blaster out in the balcony room in the afternoon. We decided not to have a proper lunch per say as we were having a big dinner, instead we’d just have crisps and chocolate and stuff. Alex was still giving classes so I settled myself in my reading corner and got cracking on trying to get further in this book. It has been incredibly dull and slow to start, but once it got to about 45% it started to get better. It’s now relatively interesting. I felt like everything moved so slowly and that not a lot of the back story had really been covered. Instead we had in-depth descriptions about anything and everything and far too many side characters who I’m still not even sure who half of them was. It was about the time that she’d headed off on the El Camino that it got interesting, which was only about half a page. For all the constant over descriptions of everything, it felt an injustice to surmise the entire El Camino and hitchhiking around Europe into one page.

Reading my book the mixtape in lockdown

But, I made a good dent in the book. The end looks in sight and I’m hoping the next one will grab me more. I can understand why people like this book, but it’s not for me. I just don’t think I can relate to it. The one bit I could relate to, was rushed but I am into the story now which is an improvement!

It seems the whole world is obsessed with TikTok now, aren’t they? If I’m not scrolling for hours at a time, I’m making these videos. I’ve done some miming ones and a few dances. I learnt the Joey audition dance so TikTok goals have been accomplished.

TikTok selfie

It was late afternoon when the storm finally arrived. The crash of thunder followed by patters of rain. The sky was still blue until I looked properly out of the window and saw the huge, black cloud directly above the apartment. It didn’t last long, probably ten minutes or so, but in that time, the air went hot and heavy and then cold, light and fresh. Like the shedding of a skin. A reset button had been hit. It’s whole build up all day, came down to just ten minutes. Ten minutes of released weather anger. The birds scattered in every direction for some shelter, the cat who comes and sits in the pool scarpered and Rio sat by my side on the ottoman watching it. He tilts his ears when he heard the thunder. Apparently cavalier King Charles spaniels are not afraid of a storm. The only time I’ve seen him real afraid of the storm was one summers night when it crashed and crashed and if I’m being honest, it scared me too. Never have I thought that maybe the balcony room might fall, until that night. The flashes of light lit up the room, even with our blackout curtains. It’s the one time that Rio has whimpered in bed in between us during a storm.

Storm in Benidorm April 2020

Alex has been watching Brooklyn 9-9 which I’ve never seen before, I watch the odd one when I’m in the room when he watches it and it’s pretty funny. A bit ridiculous, but funny. I haven’t really watched a lot of TV in ages, I’m mainly on my iPad playing games, scrolling social media or reading my book or doing exercise. I put off doing my languages today until the very last minute, so I made a mental note that I would do it earlier on in the day today.

Alex cooking in lockdown

Alex made us the chicken wrapped in bacon with rice stuffed peppers again today. It was over a week ago that we last had it, and we really enjoyed it then. He puts lemons and limes, spinach and peppers and chilli flakes in with it and makes a Philadelphia stuffing so it’s very nice. Just as he dished up, Lockdown TV was about to go live. Everyone tunes in, my mum, my dad, my Nan and us. Asa does a show at 7pm (UK time) on his Facebook live and shows some photos, does some talking and sings some songs. It may be rapidly turning into our highlight of Monday’s, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Lockdown TV Asa Elliott set up

I’m not sure how I used to go to work and go out. Where did I find the time? I read an account of somebody who’d lived in Wuhan Lockdown long before we were in lockdown and it kinda stuck with me. “The time goes so quickly that you’ll find yourself in a new routine and then suddenly you’re free again. So start the tasks and goals that you want to achieve from the start”. Time is going so quickly and I’m so glad I made a list of ideas I wanted to achieve at the beginning of lockdown before the end, as it’s given me some sort of purpose and something to work towards. Instead of counting down days until lockdown is over, I see how close I am to achieving something else. Little victories. But honestly, how did I find time to do things before?

I sat on the ottoman on the balcony reading some more long after it went dark. There was nothing major news wise around here today, just that they said they hadn’t had any major breaches of the looser lockdown regulations, which caused a stir of debate with everybody dobbing in somebody that they saw. I did a quick 10 minute yoga flow in the dark before heading off to bed.

Every day we are one day closer. And now they’re discussing ways to lift lockdown, that one day seems closer than ever.

Keep safe,

L x



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