Stir-crazy and climbing the walls (Life during lockdown)

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by Kate Woodford

As COVID-19 continues to force so much of the world’s population into lockdown (= a situation in which you are ordered to stay at home), I thought it might be interesting to look at the language that we use to describe what we are now doing with our days. 

Holed up (= inside, in a safe place) for a long period, many people are finding new ways to while away the time (=spend the time). Some are learning a new language while others have taken up (= started) a new hobby. In some families, parents and children are now working out (=exercising) together in their living rooms.

Keen cooks are digging out (=finding) cookbooks that they haven’t used for years and trying out (=testing) recipes that they’ve never done. Of course, this assumes that they can find all the ingredients in their local supermarkets. At the start of the lockdown, there were shortages (=not enough) of particular products caused by people stockpiling them (=buying large supplies for future use).

Of course, the internet is providing a lot of people with occupation (=regular activity). Unable to meet people from different households, many are using it to get or stay in touch with friends and family. Some are enjoying virtual get-togethers online. For some people, this means getting to grips with (=trying to learn)  technology that they have never used before.

In some parts of the world, it’s been reported that during the lockdown, people are fostering (=taking care of) rescue animals for the company and comfort that they provide. Many rescue centres (UK)rescue centers (US) are particularly busy at the moment, so this is quite helpful.

Not everyone has more time on their hands (=has more free time). In fact, some people have a lot less. With so many schools shut down, parents who are working from home are also having to homeschool (=teach at home) their children. When the children have finished their online assignments, parents are looking for new ways to occupy them (=keep them busy), while meeting their own work deadlines.

Of course, not everyone is enjoying spending so much time at home. Some have nothing – or a lot less than usual – to do. We might describe them as being at a loose end. Others are very bored and annoyed because they can’t go out and do what they usually do. Someone who feels like this may be said informally to be climbing the walls, or they may be described as stir-crazy.

I hope you found these words and phrases interesting and that you are not climbing the walls at home!



34 thoughts on “Stir-crazy and climbing the walls (Life during lockdown)

  1. Rajesh Bishwas

    Superb writing. Thanks a lot .
    We want more like this type of writing, pleas e.
    We are waiting to read again.

  2. Maryem Salama

    With such a brilliant blog, I think, my dear Kate, I would never be stir-crazy. Thank you very much.

      1. Maryem Salama

        Kate, as ever, I love you very much, and I adore what you write now and then.

  3. Thank a lot for a great article! I’m going to read it with my students. We are still on remote learning and I want my students to share their thoughts on how they feel being in lockdown and what activities they do in order not to go stir-crazy.

    1. Kate Woodford

      Helen, I’m so pleased to hear this! I hope it helps your students to express how they’re feeling in these challenging times. Thank you!

  4. Trần Đinh Luận

    You made a fantastic writing. It’s so helpful and I can learn a lot from it.
    Thank you very much!

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