10 Weeks Look but Don’t Touch!
It was half-term, 19 February 2020 when I was last in the hills on Sale Fell with Christine. A lot has happened since then and we have talked of nothing else. “Coronavirus”. We stayed at home. Not such a chore when the sun was shining and the garden was ready for some attention, but the hills were always calling and freedom to chose where and for how long we could drink in the fresh air and stunning views a constant thought in the back of our minds.
After 10 weeks of almost permanent sun we worried it may disappear on the day we headed out to the hills for the first time in a while. Thankfully the heat remained unseasonally hot for our first gentle ascent of Fellbarrow. Not a long drive from home and not a difficult climb, mindful that I did not want to be the one to put the Mountain rescue and our already stretched health services under any further duress it was a great place for a come-back.
My son could not understand my joy at breathing-in the new views, which to his teenage brain looked just as green and blue as the ones at home. I could feel the energy returning to my veins and was thankful for my daily 2.5 mile walk for the past 10 weeks, meaning at least my lungs and heart could cope even if my uphill leg muscles might be sore the next day.
On the summit we met Jason and Adam who in accordance with current practice kept their distance but enjoyed the spectacle of a spinner on the summit. Meeting them helped my confidence in feeling that it was somehow “wrong” to be in the hills again. Bheinn carried out a social distanced signing of the wheel, by writing Adam and Jason’s names for them, and at that moment I felt I was starting to return to some sort of normal. My mind was racing forward to plans for my next mountains. I was truly “excited”. A feeling we do not always identify when life is too busy. 10 weeks in lockdown and I realised that the freedoms we enjoy in our lives and the spectacular county we live in can easily be overlooked.
A post lockdown resolution – not to take anything for granted ever again!