Monday, November 23, 2020

Not Happening

So many plans got cancelled this year. Trips abroad, birthday parties, weddings, family gatherings, but also work events. Probably only companies that work entirely with members of their immediate family whom they live in the same household with will hold "offline" company Christmas parties this year. There definitely won't be a big office party at my company and I have not seem 95% of my team mates in person since the beginning of March this year. One type of event that got cancelled a lot this year was workshops and truth be told in same cases I gave a sigh of relief when after having been postponed for 2 or 3 times in the hope of being able to hold them in the office it was decided to "cancel it for now". Today (I am writing this on Sunday night) I am facilitating a workshop for the leadership teams of two alpha males with a tendency to demonstrate to one another who is more assertive. This workshop was originally supposed to take place the first Monday of lockdown 1, then got postponed to June and now is taking place in virtual form. I had really hoped that it would get postponed to "whenever" or cancelled for good, but, now, alas there is no escaping it. I'd be much in favour of a selective type of plan disruption caused by our favourite virus: let the nice things happen, but feel free to put a stop on all the uncomfortable commitments...

Monday, November 16, 2020

Active Vocabulary

Now that we are heading into Lockdown 2.0 my coping mechanisms remain the same: cooking, baking, sewing and walks in the neighbourhood, provided I get to see daylight. Some days it feels the "old normal" never happened (but Google photos or Instagram helpfully remind me what I was doing a year ago or so...), others my mind boggles thinking about the fact that words like "lockdown" or "mouth-nose-cover" are now in everybody's active vocabulary. A year ago, Asian people (in Asia, mostly) were the only people you would see walk around cities wearing surgical masks. "Lockdown" or "curfew" were words you only got to hear war reporters use. My mum accidentally referred to "lockdown" as "lockup" and this is what it often feels like. Locked up for having been naughty, but I want to raise my hand and rectify the situation. "It wasn't ME!". Ah, well...
 

Monday, November 09, 2020

What a Week!

 

Last week was a bit much to take in. Apart from the fact that I spent way too much time in my home office and didn't get any fresh air and daylight on some days, a horrible terrorist attack shook the nation and my phone was flooded with messages from friends abroad asking if I was okay when I woke up on Tuesday morning. Thankfully I was and all in all, it wasn't nearly as traumatising as it would have been had I been in the city at the time myself and heard the sirens like my friends did. or if I had been locked in a theatre for hours like a friend was. I was safe in Highflyer's house and therefore it all didn't feel as close to home, literally.
The day after the attack I found out that one of my dearest friends had been tested positive for Covid-19, thankfully a "mild case". This person had been very careful and rule-abiding with no idea how and where they got infected, which made it even more worrying, somehow.
I have reached that stage again where I try to seriously censor my own news consumption. Stories of hospital staff calling the situation "dramatic" does not help my mental wellbeing and I just hope numbers will go down and this second lockdown will have a positive effect.
The news of Biden winning the U.S. presidential elections and lovely quality time with Highflyer on Saturday, when he had the day off, definitely put a silver lining in an otherwise pretty bleak week.

Monday, November 02, 2020

Pandemic Fatigue

 

Last week as we were all speculating about whether there will be another lockdown and if so, how will it differ from the spring edition, etc., I came across the term "pandemic fatigue" in various articles. I may not suffer from it in the actual sense as I am still a compliant "good citizen", but I've certainly tired of a lot of the things that seemed bearable when you thought they were only temporary. I have mentioned it before, but I am becoming more and more indignant with people who are not able to pull themselves together and accept the fact that we need to obey a few things in order to be able to enjoy others. I had an interesting discussion with a friend last week when I said that one of the reasons why I try my best to take all precautions is that I don't want to inconvenience other people (who, by becoming my contacts should I get tested positive, would have to stay in quarantine and not be able to do what they might have planned for that period of time). She said that this was ridiculous as nobody thought that way about giving anybody else the flu or any other disease. Apart from the fact that I would actually feel bad, I do think it is different if you need to be quarantined and there is a certain aspect of social stigma involved as well. It might not be within everybody's comfort zone to have paramedics with protective suits turn up at your door for all neighbours to see.  As we're faced with a home-bound November with no idea how the rest of the winter months will unfold, I'd like to have a fast-forward button to that period in the future when we will hopefully have a certain stability again. It does not even have to be all rosey, but it would be nice to familiarise yourself with that New Normal, whatever it may be, without having to fear that it won't last longer than a month or two.

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