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'Work emails are softer in Covid times. Usually terse colleagues are asking each other how we are and meaning it'

The Lockdown Diaries

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Sophie White

Sophie White

Sophie White

'Good morning, apologies for the early email…" so begins almost every pre-6am work email I've sent in the last week. My work window - now that my husband and I both work full-time from home with no childcare - is hideously early. I don't mind the hour particularly as BC (Before Covid) I often worked early while my husband did the morning with the kids (breakfast, lunches, dressing etc), but that work was writing books, not emailing editors at ungodly hours asking presumably annoying questions.

Of course, there is leeway for irritating behaviours in a pandemic - now that handshakes, hugs and close contact are verboten, forgiveness is perhaps the most meaningful thing we can offer each other. Work emails are softer in Covid times, usually terse colleagues are asking each other how we are and meaning it.

We're all experiencing lockdown firsts right now. Last week, we had our first Lockdown Friday Night with my husband having Google Hangout Beers with his gang in the kitchen and me upstairs chatting to some of my friends on Zoom. I had my first Distance Car Date with my mother and aunt for Mother's Day - they parked in a carpark by the beach and stayed safely contained in their respective cars while my kids pressed homemade cards against the windows and mooned them (it's their fave thing at the moment!).