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Word of the week: census

Yesterday was Census Day here in the UK. Once every decade, in the years ending in “1”, adults are obliged to fill in a form recording details about themselves and their household. I don’t recall how we filled in the form in 2011, whether it was online or on paper, but yesterday it was all online.  

It was a Sunday afternoon and we sat, the four of us, around the kitchen table. We used my daughter’s laptop and I typed in the first set of answers. My wife typed in her responses, then my daughter, aged 14, typed in hers. I entered the details for my son, aged 16, and that was it, all done in well under an hour.  

Looking back, years ending in “1” have often been times of big change in my life. In 1971 I started a new school, ending my brief time in Catholic education. In 1981 I started university. In 1991 my mother got sick, as recounted in this piece. There were other major changes that year, but I’m not quite ready to share them with you here. In 2001 I got married. Right now I can’t think of anything quite so significant about 2011. My daughter started primary school. I ended some friendships, mainly related to music, but nothing comes to mind that was as significant as starting university or getting married. It’s too soon to know what 2021 holds. If anything happens, I’ll let you know, sometime between now and 2031.  




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