How has this week in lockdown been for you? The Internet has made it tolerable for me.

I live alone and I’m in a vulnerable group age-wise for the coronavirus. So I’ve been observing all the lockdown precautions, but still having a walk each day. What has made this experience much more tolerable though has been access to modern communications, especially the Internet.

On Monday, I used FaceTime to deliver an online session on Victorian history for my nine year old granddaughter in Milton Keynes. This week we covered developments in transportation and industrialisation and used a couple of short films on YouTube. On Tuesday, I had an online lunch with a young friend using Skype. On Wednesday, I repeated my session on Victorian history for the nine year old son of a good friend of mine in south London.

On Thursday, I should have been at a hospital for a routine consultation on a health issue, but instead the consultant phoned me at home. The same day, I used Zoom for the first time to attend a lecture on the American presidential election provided by the City Literary Institute which has now put 80% of its courses online. Over 40 students were part of the session.

On Friday, I had a Skype call with my Chinese ‘family’ in Oxford. They have family in Wuhan – the original location of the virus – which I’ve visited twice. On Saturday, I had an online chat with my granddaughter and we each used puppets or cuddly toys to give a little performance.

Also on Saturday, I joined an online launch of a new book by a very good friend. Thanks to the wonders of Zoom, there were participants from 14 locations around the world in seven time zones. There was a short slide presentation, a film clip, and a short video as well as discussion.

On a day to day basis, I’m part of a WhatsApp group of some residents in my block of flats. Throughout the week, I’ve been checking into Facebook several times a day and it’s been a comfort to see pictures and messages from many of the 300 friends with whom I’m connected.


  • Tom Kiedrowski


    It’s good to see that you are keeping active and making the most of technology and connectivity available.

    When this is all over, I’d like to take you to lunch in town.

    Take care of yourself.

    Best Wishes,


  • Roger Darlington

    I’d like that very much, Tom. Meanwhile stay well.

  • Janelle Hartman

    Bet I’m not the only one who’d love to see your history tutorials! 🙂

  • Mavis


    So pleased to see you are, as usual, just getting on with it and helping with education, which as we know is essential. Young children having different teachers is a good experience – so continue on as always – stay safe.

  • Roger Darlington

    Thanks for your encouragement, Mavis.

    This week we covered political reform including the Peterloo Massacre and the Great Reform Act.


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