Back in the brief lift of lockdown in the summer we had our first visitors to the house. They came socially distanced in a car each, wearing masks, with all of us taking daily temperature readings and applying regular hand sanitiser.
Way earlier in the year, before Coronavirus was even more than a passing news story off in a different continent we had had an email from the TV company who filmed New Lives In The Wild with us way back in 2015. They were planning a revisited series and wanted to know if we would be up for it.
We explained that we no longer lived ‘in the wild’ and had left Rum the previous spring. That while we still lived a slightly unconventional life we were now in a house, connected to the grid, running a car and even though it was still a 60 mile round trip involving a ferry we could actually get to a supermarket! That we would consider ourselves now more rural than isolated, semi-feral rather than wild….
We were persuaded that we still had something interesting to talk about – that a ‘life in the wild’ was about more than just chopping firewood and living in a caravan. After some discussion between the four of us and several more phonecalls with the TV company we decided to go ahead with it.
It was truly great to catch up with Ben again, to hear about his last five years adventures – scaling Everest, living through lockdown, home schooling his children…. and share our stories about life after Rum. Obviously in a 45 minute show with a large proportion of the time being spent on flashbacks to the original there is a limited amount of new footage that can be fitted in, particularly when life has changed as much as it has for us in the past five years.
It was good to take Ben for a swim and give him the opportunity to reconsider some of his own ideas about home education and childhoods in the wilderness. It was also nice for us to see the finished show this evening when it finally aired – some 7 months after it had been filmed. Despite the rather harsh story it told of our life on Rum we all enjoyed seeing the us of 6 years ago, the animals and the life we had then.
As happened last time we have already had a flurry of communication via the internet – friends who saw it, people who went to school or worked with Ady or I decades ago who were reminded that they once knew us and a mix of people who have lovely things to say (always welcome obviously!), genuine questions or interest in our story (equally always very welcome) or simply want to say something (more or less welcome depending on what it is they want to say!).
For us this show, as was the previous, was a snapshot of our lives at a particular point in time. It is lovely to see and to have as a momento, it was lovely to catch up with the crew and with Ben. And like the ten years plus worth of archives along the side bar of this blog it will become another of our memories, of the things we did and an opportunity we decided to take when it was offered to us.