23:14

This evening I went to a Japanese restaurant with two friends who I have seen separately within the lock down period, but not together. It was lovely to finally be reunited as a trio! We took advantage of the current UK government Eat Out to Help Out scheme that many restaurants are taking part in and got 50% off our bill. We caught up, laughed, took photos, enjoyed some good food and each other’s company. We also went back to my friend’s flat and played a quiz game. Before the pandemic we would play board games together quite often, so it was heartwarming to enjoy that activity again.

The weather has taken a drastic turn. When we went out to dinner it was bright and sunny with no signs of thunderstorms on the way. We all wore skirts/dresses with no need for jackets! A lovely summer’s evening… or so we thought. On the way back home we started to hear the rumbling from the thunder, and began to see small flashes of lightning. As soon as my friend and I got to our respective houses, the torrential rain came down. Thunder, lightning, rain, humidity, the works. Definitely some of the brightest flashes of lightning that I’ve ever seen! I read in the news that it is a few months worth of rain coming down in one night… how crazy! Thankful to be out of the horrible weather and in a warm and cozy bed.

23:32

This evening I played tennis with a friend from 20:00-21:30. This was our first tennis session in 2 weeks so it felt good to release some pent up energy and frustrations on the tennis court. I tend to feel quite tired and drained after a good tennis session, especially if I have also ran that morning, but today I felt more energised after playing.

I went for a run in the morning as usual (7km) and then rested at home for most of the day. With tennis I use different muscles so maybe it loosened up my joints and helped with my aching areas. After I got home and showered I felt relaxed and my body is not stiff or sore at all. The fact that we played in cooler temperatures may have contributed to a more relaxed feeling, compared to our usual manic, sweaty heat-of-the-day sessions. We played until we could barely see in the dim light.

Edinburgh weather is forecast to be thunderstorms and heavy rain all week, which made enjoying the good weather in the previous couple of days more important. The nights are starting to get darker quicker. A few weeks ago we played tennis past 22:00, but now the summer evenings are fading fast. August has brought about a peaceful haze to Edinburgh as there is no Fringe Festival this year. The usual bustle from the festival and tourists is amiss. The quietness is soothing but there is definitely the feeling that something is missing.

23:07

Today it poured with rain all day in Edinburgh. Heavy, relentless rain. I decided not to go out for my usual walk/run as I would surely get soaked in the downpour. Instead I did some at home workouts, walked more around the house and did some chores to keep me active. I managed to stick to my daily 10k step count!

I recently started watching The Office (US) on Amazon Prime. I am using the free trial so am blazing through the episodes really quickly! I am on season 5 after less than a week, whoops… It is a show that is easy to leave on in the background while I do other things.

Yesterday I visited a charity bookstore which I have not been to since my student days. Recently I have been on the look out for children’s books as gifts, but also picked up a book for myself. I ended up starting and finishing the book within 24 hours! When the weather is dreary it is perfect for curling up with a good book. I love the sound of the pouring rain as I lay on my bed soaking in the atmosphere and words on the page. It has been a long time since I picked up a book from my collection, mostly because they are packed away in a box somewhere. It felt good to get back into reading again, and for it to transport me to a different world for a few hours. Revisiting old hobbies is a form of self care which is comforting and settling at the same time.

21:30

These lock down weeks seem to come in quicker and quicker as the months go by. Already tomorrow is Friday and brings around another weekend which is not much different from the rest. This week I have explored a few new areas of Edinburgh by foot (even in the pouring rain), baked scones, had video calls, cleaned and tidied my room, and also watched a stupid amount of Netflix, YouTube and films. The other things such as sleeping at crazy hours and eating weird cravings I don’t really need to mention…

More significant happenings include my younger brother and his wife are expecting a baby in December! Super happy news and I’m thankful that they came to tell me in person (from 6ft away of course). Definitely a blessing to brighten up a dreary lock down time, and something to look forward to when all this is over. I will become an aunty twice this year so have started collecting cute clothing etc for the babies in preparation for meeting them!

An important choice I made this week was to cut out black tea from my consumption. I recently noticed the toll tea took on the colour of my teeth so am actively using natural methods to combat the stains. I still occasionally drink green tea but have been sticking to water in a bid to keep a healthier system. Definitely miss the little caffeine boost from tea but thankfully I don’t need it during lock down!

22:47

Today was a ‘walk in the rain’ kind of day. Albeit I only walked from work to the bus stop, and then from the bus stop to my house, the rain pouring down felt good in a way. It felt like a cleansing of the stress and anxiety that I have been feeling lately. In that short walk I felt the raindrops patter down onto my hair, slowly bead on my forehead and drip down my nose. In nature’s weather extremities my life feels calmer and more at ease. My problems seem lessened and are forgotten about for a brief moment.

As the weather has been miserable lately I have been spending a lot more time indoors compared to a month ago. I have not been able to walk home from work in the sun, nor have I been able to bring myself to leave the comforts of my own room for fear of facing the elements. I know these sound like excuses however I look to change them this month.

My interaction with nature has dropped considerably. I am always plugged in and tuned out. I sit at a desk for long periods of my day. I prefer to look at my phone than at the world. Here’s to the hopeful, little changes and inspiration that come from a walk in the rain.

00:07

There is something about jogging in the rain that is really soothing and mind-emptying. That coupled with a sense of exploration and a hint of adventure, makes for a good run.

I always find that I feel so refreshed after going jogging or running; not only physically but mentally too. The time spent alone with nothing but feet pounding the ground is relaxing and releases any tension I have built up.

11:18

The sound of falling rain is calming, soothing, almost hypnotic. I have a skylight in my house above the stairs and whilst I lie in bed awake I can hear the patter of raindrops on the glass. I can hear the changes in the heaviness of rain and when it has stopped completely.

Hearing the sound of rain while I am safe and warm inside makes me grateful for a roof over my head, for the clothes on my back and the possessions that I own. To be outside in the rain is a whole different experience. It is not relaxing to be caught in a downpour, it is not soothing to be soaked from head to toe. In Edinburgh it rains long and hard, often for the entire day. As much as I dislike being caught in the rain, I think the tranquillity of listening to the rain falling weighs out the negatives.