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thoughts of the week

  • @chelseabirkby


Lockdown is a great time to get to know your housemates. Here are some questions I’ve had the opportunity to ask, and some incredible responses.

Have you ever explored hats? What trends did you really jump on as a kid? [Conkers] Who did you pretend to be into as a kid to impress your friends? [Hanson]. Ask your family this Christmas.

I saw Dad this weekend, he had a low sugar level and I filmed it for my 1SE. We had a long walk around beautiful Oxford and he told me about Dez that programme about the serial killer who murdered several men, he said it wasn’t sexual. I said “was it romantic?” and he said “I wouldn’t say so, he killed them?”. That’s not how I meant it. I said we could have burritos for lunch, he said “what’s a burrito?”. Imagine! I facetuned by acne out of a picture before I put in on the family whatsapp. That's bad isn't it. I also cried in a team meeting this week. Pippa said “crying at work has such a specific energy to it what a vibe”. I think I am gonna learn about ikigai, do you know about books about the real thing? On Saturday morning I had the most beautiful dream. I was with my Nan in her study, it was almost exactly like her study. We were going through Grandad’s books and some had these intricate gold covers, which were actually more like the frames Nan had up in that room many years before. She never liked them, she told me they looked like they were windows on a submarine, but they were his Mum’s and they might even be worth something. She spoke to me about Grandad and we poured over them and it was all so vivid, I remember a Socractic dialogue collection I thought Alex would love and what a shame they would never meet; there was an historic joke book, there was one about humanitarian aid. He didn’t have these books but he and I did have a love of books in common. It was so nice to chat and to think of Grandad. Then Nan said, she was worried about me working only 3 days a week. I explained furlough and that it was actually great and she said “oh, well you can come over more” and we laughed and I wanted to, then I had an all-encompassing feeling that I knew that wouldn’t be possible, but couldn’t remember quite why. Like when someone says let’s get brunch on Saturday, and you know there is an important reason why you can’t do that time but can’t for the life of you recall at all what it was and you don’t even know where to begin figuring it out. I said “I can’t do that, because” Then I realised why.

And then I knew that we weren’t really there in her study. We were together in a dream. So I turned to her and said “I miss you” and we hugged.

It was so real. I could feel her shoulders, and she was in her blue plaid shirt that was so soft, and her necklaces pressed against me. She was warm, but her big hands were cold. She didn’t know why, but she did not seem concerned, she was peaceful. And then the dream evaporated and I was back in my bed. I wasn’t actually upset when I woke, it was just so nice to see her. I don’t mean to sound all Holden Caufield but we all miss everybody all the time.

But it's better isn't it, to feel it. When someone dies your relationship doesn't end, it just changes. Every year, Nan would get me my signature perfume and although she was gone last Christmas, she'd already done all her shopping so this will be the first year without it. I told Alex this through tears and he said "Impulse was it?". It’s hard to get dressed up v v slutty in lockdown because what if it makes your housemates feel like it’s targeted at them specially when all you’re doing is watching Alan Partridge. Instead I wore my furry cardigan I've had for years but don't wear because it's lethal releasing fluff. I thought it changed, it hadn't. Sarah had to consider taking a pirateze. I checked the label- it said Missguided and it was.

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