The Empty Streets of Lockdown Limbo

It’s eerily quiet in Inverness town centre just now.

There are still a couple of essential shops open – shops selling food like Marks and Spencer and the Co-Op, and of course Boots the chemist (which was the main reason for my necessary walk through town the other day) but usually at this time of year Inverness is full of colours and sounds, full of tourists and locals alike mingling with occasional street performers like singers and kilted pipers adding to the general buzz of everyday life.

I took my camera with me, as I realised this would possibly be my only chance to record the empty streets of lockdown limbo – photographing a temporarily moth-balled ghost-town felt like an opportunity not to be missed. I didn’t wander while I was out, but I did deliberately walk back home a different way, creating a circular route that took in both the chemist and the supermarket without doubling back on myself.

It felt really strange and surreal to feel so alone and exposed in such a public space, like one of those weird nightmarish dreams where everyone has disappeared expect you. I did see a few other people out and about, walking as if on errands like myself, cautiously and considerately in the main, some with face masks and some without, but with everyone doing their best to keep a respectful distance from each other.

We’ve been in lockdown for six weeks now, and I’m hoping things will start moving again soon and restrictions can start to be lifted slowly but surely, allowing life to open up a little more each month while maintaining appropriate distancing measures. We still need to manage this deadly virus, without a doubt, but we need to achieve that in a way that is more manageable longterm.

Fingers crossed for a fledgling post-pandemic future for all of us, starting sooner rather than later, taking things one baby step at a time… One thing’s for sure, one way or another this current Covid 19 pandemic is certainly turning out to be an eye-opening education for all of us…

Fandango’s One Word Challenge: Education

3 thoughts on “The Empty Streets of Lockdown Limbo

  1. Ruth it certainly is a weird feeling isn’t it. When we went out for our drive in the car yesterday we managed to get as far as Gainsborough which is the next town south of us. Before lockdown we used to go there every day since I used to live there in my childhood and it was just a nice place to go. even before lockdown we did not used to get out of the car and we certainly did not yesterday but we did go to the shopping mall where we normally go just to see what was happening. My husband was able to describe it to me and apparently there were hardly any cars parked there at all when normally you would have difficulty even finding a parking bay. There were barriers around marks and spencers although it is only a very small one selling only food. It must have been a very odd site. There were hardly any people around at all and the streets likewise were deserted. It was apparently like a ghost town. It felt very weird indeed and almost like something out of a movie or a novel. We could never have imagined something happening like this in actuality could we. it feels almost bizarre. There is also a Wilkos in the shopping mall and there were about 10 people queueing outside and they were only allowing one person in at a time. There was a shop assistant at the door asking people questions before they would allow them in. It is almost impossible to imagine life going back to normal in the future. But I hope it does. I miss the sound of people bustling around and I miss my husband being able to describe things to me as the crowds jostle with each other. That to me signifies life and at the moment life is very hard to find I cannot see your pictures properly bus but I can see them in a rather blurred way and I would love to be able to see Inverness properly

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