Coronavirus diary week 19 - 26th July to 2nd August

Can this strange period really have been going on for so long?  Sometimes I am so used to it I hardly register it as strange.  I get up, I do my Spanish skype or zoom call three mornings a week.  I run, I read, I garden, I do complicated crochet.  I talk to our children on facetime or whatsapp.  This week I have been cleaning the house ready for the visit of an estate agent this afternoon.  In many ways it all feels entirely normal.  And then I turn on the news and there is a further restriction in Greater Manchester and other parts of the North.  I am so glad we took the opportunity to see our older son and his family in Manchester as soon as we could.  We sat in the garden when we went, although we could have gone inside at that time.  We stuck to our rules here in Wales and spent our time with them outside. Now at the moment two households are no longer allowed to meet inside or in a private garden so even spending time with them in the way we did a few weeks ago would not be allowed.  Let us hope that things settle down and that limited contact with family and friends can resume.  Again we thank goodness for technology without which we would feel totally isolated.

Our weeks have fallen into a pattern which feels oddly pleasing if I don't think too much about the reason for it!  A Friday evening meet up outside in the garden with friends to eat fish and chips, have a glass of wine and set the world to rights scratches the sociability itch.  The men spend much time amusing us with extended riffs on the theme of an anti-obesity strategy.  Who would have thought that two such cheerful and friendly people harboured such deep seated prejudices?  And will we ever know whether they mean it or not?

Most weeks we meet our locally living daughter and her family, again outside, and that regular contact with grandchildren makes life feel quite normal.  This week our older daughter who lives in South Wales and her family will spend Friday with us on their way back home from a short holiday.  I could almost persuade myself that life is pottering on just as usual.  But we haven't yet gone to a pub, eaten a meal out, entertained friends at home or been entertained, never mind all the things in the wider world.  


Maybe there is no wider world!  I have never been so glad to live in a quiet and beautiful place.  One day I will swim in the Mediterranean again, walk along a beach in the Outer Hebrides, take hours over lunch in a restaurant in the South of France.  But not today.

What do you miss?  And is that OK?    

Comments

  1. Today I have just started my holidays in Gandía (Valencia, Spain). There is currently a major outbreak of coronavirus here. Actually there are continuous outbreaks everywhere!. Limited contact with family and friends, social distancing, wearing mask even when we walk along the seashore and very hot temperatures (40ºC) but I´m taking it easy and staying home!.

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    1. I'm glad you are getting a break although it sounds challenging to get much relaxation surrounded by coronavirus cases. Take care!

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  2. We are pretty much low risk people. We see our family at a distance and participate in zoom meetings. Sometimes I just want to scream at the incompetence of our government but it will do no good. I try to count my blessings ( I realize now how many I have) because although I have my worries, all in my family have a roof over their heads and food to eat.

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    1. We too count our blessings. As retired people we are not at risk of losing our jobs and we don't have young children to try to educate at home! We are in good health and live in a beautiful place. We know that we are fortunate!

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  3. So pleased you went to Manchester when you could. It is hard having tighter restrictions. Melbourne and the whole of Victoria has it bad at present. We are so lucky that our only cases are Kiwis returning who are in isolation, I just hope it stays that way. On the other hand, we cannot keep our borders closed forever and goodness knows what will happen when they re-open. For now life seems back to normal. We keep a record of where we have been in case of an outbreak but, apart from that, life goes on.

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    1. Yes, we have been reading and watching reporting of the situation in Melbourne. I have family in Australia although not immediately in that area. And as you say the position in new Zealand is good in many ways but tourism is so important to the economy that it would be difficult to stay shut of from the rest of the world for very long. Fingers crossed for a vaccine.

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  4. I have so enjoyed reading all your Coronavirus diary entries and I can so relate to how your whole experience an the emotions you express. My garden has been my existence for the last 5 months and I've been so grateful. We had a first visit from daughter and grandchildren last week, which felt like life was a little bit normal. But there's a new grandson in Malaysia who we haven't met - and who knows when we will! We venture out only infrequently - have been to RHS Rosemoor and Hestercombe - but like you no meals out or socialising. Everyone we know is well - and that's what I focus on when the frustrations mount up. At my worst it feels like a wasted year at a time in my life when I don't have a year to Waste!

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    1. That all sounds very familiar sue. We are constantly looking for small things every day that bring pleasure , satisfaction or delight to try to fend off that sensation of wasted time. Mostly I think we succeed (although shouldn't try to claim always!)

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  5. Yes,I think the key to getting through these difficult times is cultivating a sense of acceptance and pleasure in the small, and perhaps apparently trivial things that happen every day. Can be easier in theory than in practice though - or at least that's my experience. Some days I manage it, on others I don't - but then being kind to oneself, as well as to others, is also to be recommended!

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    1. The interesting thing is both how profound and how banal things can be. I've been reading for years about living in the moment and the pleasure in small things to the extent that as advice it simply washes over me. And yet it is exactly that which we need to cope with the uncertainty of coronavirus. I had a very good teacher in my mother. Her approach was quite conscious but she was powerfully good at it. Ian had a very good teacher in his dad. Eric could not have articulated a philosophy but he loved to have a nice time, loved a good meal, always noticed a sunny day or a bet on a winning horse. The effect was the same.

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