Lockdown learning curve

by Keith Brudenell

When I saw a request from my project worker Simon Walker to write a story around our lives in lockdown, it was like he had read my mind, if you had told me six weeks ago what I would be doing and learning I would never have believed you.

I never thought digital skills was that big a deal and that lifelong learning was not important; I would have said that it was just for school leavers or students.  I have now proven myself wrong and have not just learned a valuable lesson but also a lot of useful knowledge.

I moved to a new house in the week lockdown took place, so where I would normally ring or go and see people, I suddenly found that I could not do that and I had to do it all online.  I was not very competent on a computer before lockdown and was more technophobe than tec-savvy.

In the six weeks and counting since lockdown started, I have achieved so much online.  I have set up online banking and paid bills which used to worry me, thinking I could pay the wrong person or clear my account in one click of a button.  I have also manged to update my address on my driving licence, sorted out my car insurance, create an account for paying my council tax and paid my TV licence and I am sure there is more to come.  Whatever happened to talking to folk in life for general everyday tasks.

This has been a steep learning curve having its moments is an understatement to say the least, but pails into comparison to what some people are having to cope with in these unprecedented times due to the COVID-19 outbreak.  My thoughts go out to everyone and I just hope as many as possible make it through this to the other side.

With this outbreak I now find that I have been promoted to a key worker, I never thought that would be the case as an HGV driver.  Not only am I learning to stay safe in the digital world but also in the real world fighting this invisible enemy, I take each day as it comes and will do everything I can to help others.

If I have learned something from these last six weeks, is that we are never too old to learn and digital skills are vital in these modern times to keep us all connected.  Staying connected is so important and we will get through this if we support each other.