Are you missing this?
Like many of you we have been gardening, walking, maintaining social distancing, learning about and getting closer to nature and enjoying the benefits of a wonderful sunny and relatively warm Spring. We have noticed how prolific the hedgerows have become and how unspoilt the beaches are. There appear to be many more insects and more chirping birds in the thickets. Nature seems to be getting closer to us and the healing plants and seaweeds that we use in our products are blousy and screaming for attention. Is it that Nature has suddenly become more abundant or that we are now much more appreciative of what is around us? It would have been a wonderful time for the St Davids Open Gardens to take place; for the Wild About Pembrokeshire Foraging Walks to be showing the countryside and beaches in all their glory; for inviting visitors from all over the UK and abroad to understand and appreciate our amazingly rich and diverse county of Pembrokeshire and the particular delights of our Smallest City in Britain.
What is ‘Lockdown’ like?
Those of us that have been taking the advantage of time and location have discovered the benefits of lockdown. With the normally crowded car park at Whitesands beach in St Davids being closed and deserted for weeks we have noticed the gradual movement of plants into the vacated places along the hedgerows, green verges, normally barren car parks and even creeping out of the undisturbed drains. Only a solitary car in situ that has obviously broken down and has had a boulder placed under its front wheels to stop it rolling into the sea.
Walking the roads, lanes and green pathways around the city has revealed similar signs of ‘dereliction’ – perhaps better described as ‘going back to nature’.
The silence is deafening!!! There are no sounds of cars, planes or children playing. No sounds of overloud radios or motorbikes to break the tranquillity, only the gentle birdsong all around us and the occasional blackbird gaily singing from his chimney pot perch. The blackbird’s love song floods down our chimney into our kitchen and making us smile.
‘Lockdown’ is indeed a very essential part of us coping with and eventually defeating, Covid-19. Social isolation can be uncomfortable, distressing, debilitating and life changing. However, there are some wonderful benefits and opportunities and many of us now have the time to appreciate in the world around us in a very different way.
Possible outcomes of lockdown
Apart from the obvious negative impacts upon our normal daily lives, the disruption and despair it has caused, most of us are still alive and able to appreciate the possible benefits of :
- a cleaner environment – less pollution, rubbish, plastic on beaches or litter in the streets
- blousy hedgerows and green lanes left to become healthy and natural – showing what we have lost through the strimming and poisoning of the natural vegetation
- less pollution on our beaches and roads from human detritus of careless visitors
- more wild plants and birds surviving – with less disturbance of their environment
- less greenhouse gases – as the number of cars on our roads has declined dramatically
- improved ozone layer – and therefore less harmful radiation reaching our delicate skin.