Lockdown Tales – Magic Berol, Devon Broadband, Webcam taxi

Lockdown is beginning to ease in England, but it just doesn’t feel right. We’re staying put for the time being, remaining in isolation despite what the government says. Here are some more stories from our lockdown world.

Magic 25 year old Berol pens

Millions of us have been getting arty in lockdown. But how many other people are using felt pens they bought for a fiver twenty five years ago?

Back in 1995 I bought a set of Berol Colour Brush pens in a Brighton art shop. I’ve been using them ever since. I’ve still got all of them except the brown and the orange, which have dried out. The rest are going strong two and a half decades later. Surely that must be magic?

Thank you Berol for helping me create twenty five years’ worth of paintings, drawings and home-made greetings cards at a cost of roughly 20p a year. That’s what I call amazing.

The wonder of webcamtaxi.com

Bored? Suffering from ennui? Try this.

Webcamtaxi.com showcases a bunch of publicly accessible British webcams plus loads more overseas. There’s everything from webcams revealing Covid-emptied beaches and deserted city centres to cameras letting you nose around inside New York hairdressers, Dutch restaurants and dog kennels in Slovakia.

Digital life in north Devon – With awesome FTTP

The problem with rural life? Broadband connections are a bit crap. Or are they?

If you’ve spent the past ten weeks locked down in a city or town and have started dreaming about country living, hold onto that dream.

When we lived in Brighton, our Fibre To The Cabinet connection fed into a cabinet a couple of houses down. As a result our connection was massive. You could’ve squeezed an elephant through our pipe.

When we moved to remote north Devon, we didn’t expect to get quite such a good connection. We’re in the middle of nowhere after all, as well as down in a dip. But we have FTTP here, direct to our house, and our upload and download speeds are even faster than they were in the famously well-connected South East.

The moral of the story? Scientists have been predicting exactly this kind of pandemic for a couple of decades. So far, in recent times, we’ve had epidemics of Ebola, Sars, Mers and Zika to deal with. The current Covid-19 pandemic won’t be the last.

Move to north Devon and enjoy a calmer lifestyle, excellent Broadband connectivity, magical beaches, decent public transport links to London, incredibly cheap parking, and property prices you won’t believe if you’ve been living in the capital or the ‘Home Counties’ for any length of time.

In the meantime, live well and stay safe.

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