Looking to the future as restrictions ease

(Image courtesy of Unsplash)

14th May 2021

By Abbey Bryant

With the restrictions relaxing, we are finally seeing the first glimpses of the light at the end of an awfully long tunnel. Whether you are excited to be reunited with family and friends; eating inside and not wearing 600 layers to combat the cold; the hopeful possibility of returning to normal life presents itself as extremely exciting!

Just remember, it is completely normal to be overwhelmed with this new glimpse of reality. I am feeling anxious about returning to the lifestyle I had grown so accustomed to pre-COVID. With the support of your friends and family, you will be just fine and we hope you enjoy every moment of it!

Substituting zoom for socialising?

Socialising. One of the biggest leaps we are making with the new restrictions, although we must remember to walk before we can run. With different variations of the term ‘socialising’ being thrown around throughout the pandemic, I think we all need refreshing on what the term ‘socialising’ entails. A question I bet you never thought you’d be asking yourself….

So we can eat out, literally out… (don’t even get me started on outside dining fashion!). But, we can finally gather outside with our friends and family which is brightening all of our days. So, wrap up warm for a cuppa and catch-up with your loved ones!

I think I can speak for everyone when I say I am thrilled to be communicating with my family in person rather than via Zoom. Though it was a great method of interaction during lockdown, it was painful teaching our grandparents the importance of not covering their microphones when they spoke! Opening Christmas presents and eating dinner via zoom was not what anyone expected. Definitely a Christmas Day we will never forget.

Family parties are going to be non-stop in light of the recent restriction alterations. I am most excited to be reunited with my family. Seeing our great aunts, second cousins, your Nan’s neighbour’s cat – you name them, I want to see them! Having spent the entirety of the pandemic cooped up with your immediate family, the thought of mingling with your long-lost cousins is so exciting. We will cherish these precious moments. Make sure you hug all your loved ones a little tighter!

Despite being a known social butterfly, I feel my social battery has depleted a crazy amount due to restrictions. Though it may seem so daunting to resume to ‘normal’ activities, this will be a momentous occasion for all of us. Take your time with easing into socialising and our previously called ‘normal lives’.

Outdoor dining

A concept we have all been conquering since the 12th of April announcement. It was a momentous day for us all, I recall so many Instagram stories of pints upon pints at the local beer garden. But did we really think the practicality through? You can always rely on the ‘English summer weather’ to let us down. So you need to try outdoor dining places with adequate outdoor heating – my personal Canterbury favourites have been Citi Terrace and The Dolphin.

Thrilled by the concept of ‘going out out’, my housemates and I dressed up for the occasion, only to be freezing cold. Lets just say, you’re not going to look cute or Instagram ready for the time being. Tackling a cheeseburger in the freezing cold was a weird experience to say the least, but nonetheless, an experience I’m grateful for. Learn from my mistakes, a Zara bodysuit and denim jacket is NOT sufficient clothing for outdoor dining. Layer up – the insta pic is not worth hypothermia!

However, come the 17th May, we will no longer be confronted by the cold and we can move to different territory – inside! Venturing to places like the cinema, a cheeky Nando’s and your Nan’s front room, these moments will be precious, and I hope you all experience the first-time excitement once we’re allowed.

Just picture all of these moments for the first time. Your first cuddle with your grandparents, walking excitedly down the steps to your cinema seat, Tango Ice- Blast in hand of course or eating a meal in a building rather than an unstable outdoor table. The list of exciting ventures are endless. I hope you are looking forward to the exciting opportunities that arise with the new restrictions!