Shelley-Anne Salisbury: Seeing the bigger picture as vaccine rolls out
Shelley-Anne Salisbury, Hampstead Garden Suburb
- Credit: Shelley-Anne Salisbury
Walking across the Heath Extension this time last year, I paused at the sight of the slate-grey spire of St Jude’s rising in the distance from Central Square, where the first clod of earth was upturned to create the Hampstead Garden Suburb.
It looked particularly majestic against the cold but clear blue sky and I WhatsApped a photo to a friend. “The Suburb in winter,” I typed. “Sublime,” she replied. It was the start of 2020 and we were all blissfully unaware of everything the year would bring.
So many aspects of our lives have changed since then. Social distancing has forced us to exist in a two-metre vacuum. We circumnavigate one other, carefully negotiating the space between us in fear of getting too close. As we spend disproportionate amounts of time at home and interact via our various screens, we have all become rather insular.
We find it difficult to look out towards the horizon and see the bigger picture, the panoramic vistas.
Roll forward a year later, to January 2021, and on another walk across the Heath Extension, St Jude’s spire came into view against a similar blue sky. I WhatsApped another photo to my friend “The Suburb in a Covid-winter,” I typed. “…Still sublime,” she replied.
You may also want to watch:
I stopped for a moment to study St Jude’s spire and the other buildings making up the familiar Suburb skyline, always more visible at this time of year with the trees stripped bare in their winter state. It dawned on me this view has remained unchanged, constant, proof that some aspects of our pre-Covid lives might not be altogether lost after all. Perhaps we were all just too busy concentrating on our immediate surrounds, demarcated by those two metres?
With the vaccine here at last, there is now a real prospect of winning the war against coronavirus.
- 1 O2 Centre redevelopment consultation opened by Camden Council
- 2 Government punishes Haringey Council over missed housing target
- 3 'Two people who love each other': 70 years together for Hermi and Shirley
- 4 Remembering 'positive, caring and kind' Hornsey pupil Amy
- 5 'Dumped and forgotten': Homeless families on life in England's Lane hostel
- 6 I completely trust Aubameyang says Arsenal boss Arteta
- 7 Talking Bob Dylan, life, culture, politics and Shakespeare
- 8 Plans for 60ft 5G mast in Crouch End 'not in keeping' with conservation area
- 9 Morrisons opens replacement store in Chalk Farm
- 10 Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe: 'No news is bad news' ahead of end of sentence
Even as we enter a third national lockdown, knowing it will be some time yet before we can resume "normal" life, maybe, just maybe, we can allow ourselves, albeit tentatively, to look out towards the horizon and reacquaint ourselves with that bigger picture, those panoramic vistas?
- Shelley-Anne Salisbury is co-editor of Suburb News.