Lockdown Life

A series of interviews with villagers in lockdown by Frances Currey

4: Currey family interlude


To keep herself entertained during lockdown, my Mother has taken it upon herself to re-cover every lampshade in the house. Hanging above my parents’ bed is a customised tissue lampshade that, as well as being a fire hazard, looks eerily like a coronavirus molecule. Covid-19 is hanging over all our heads at the moment and one is, quite literally, hanging over my Mum and Dad as they sleep. (see pic)

During lockdown, we have been cooking up some strange meals. Recently we had a sausage stew which included wine and baked beans.

One day, I blended a tin of tomatoes, hoping it would taste like tomato soup. It didn’t.

My brother, Ilmington’s answer to Bear Grylls, is a keen forager. One evening he served up battered dandelion heads which tasted like onion bhajis. On another occasion he served up nettle crisps - baked stinging nettle leaves. These tasted like - baked stinging nettle leaves. I think if I had to live off food that I had found in the wild I might starve.

My Dad has been growing veg’ in our garden. His tomato plants were coming on nicely when, one evening, a sheep which we have named ‘Steve McQueen’, cleared the fence (not on a motorbike) and nibbled off the tops of Dad’s precious spuds and tomatoes. We might have to wait some months for any garden produce ending up on the dinner table.  

My parents are both rather eccentric and have managed to pass this gene onto my brother. Despite being 22 years old Bill spends all his time lighting fires, hanging out in the woods, whittling spoons and forcing his poor girlfriend Alice to camp in our back garden. On one of these occasions, the temperature dropped so low overnight, we heard a shivering Alice creep back into the house at 4am. On another occasion, Bill insisted on sleeping under the stars in his hammock.  A torrential downpour soaked him to the skin. Despite having a nice, warm bed in the house, he refused to give in. In the morning, looking like a drowned rat, Bill proclaimed “I had a great night”.

I always believed myself to be the only sane member of my family. However, lockdown has given me the opportunity to look inwards and embrace my inner ‘strange’. Like many, I’ve seen lockdown as an opportunity for some self-improvement and recently decided to get fit. I imagined myself in some trendy, air-conditioned gym, dressed in fashionable sportswear, glowing with health, while training on some state-of-the-art equipment. In reality, that Tuesday night, I found myself plodding around Ilmington playing fields. Red in the face and wearing the same joggers I’ve had on since lockdown began, I attempted to keep up with four middle-aged men all caked in mud from the downpour earlier that day. I had joined my Dad at circuit training.  Needless to say, I don’t think my career as a sports influencer will be taking off anytime soon.

I hope you are all having fun and eccentric adventures during this lockdown period.


See you all, (with the rest of South Warwickshire!) in the pub garden on July 4th.


Until then, stay safe and I’ll be back with another, more conventional, interview in a couple of weeks.

Frances Currey.

This week I’ve decided to do something a bit different. Me and my Dad have had a discussion about the funny, quirky side of life in lockdown.

The first thing I asked my Dad was, what is his favourite joke about lockdown? Having been in lots of panto’s I knew he’d know some corny jokes. He said “Why don’t I open the curtains in the morning during lockdown?” I said “I don’t know, why don’t you open the curtains in the morning during lockdown?”. He replied, “There would be nothing to do in the afternoon if I did that!”.

Since not acting on stage for a while, we’ve had no choice but to be the audience to Dad’s performances. My respect goes to Mum who has put up with him and his gags, for thirty odd years.