I haven’t written much in the last months, or half a year really. Because I am a firm believer in only writing when I really feel like writing, and especially only when I feel like I have something to say.
Since January 2020, I have been working from home almost exclusively, and posting more often on social media to build my brand, my clients, and my following. But I believe that instagram and facebook posts should not be letters ( nor longer than a few sentences ) So here I go, back to writing somewhere a bit more legit, a place where I share my thoughts and photos.
Yes, the theme of this post is the Corona Virus, but unlike most of the news we have been seeing the last months, my thoughts will be on the positive ( because of the negatives ) that have developed in our society.
But first let me start off by saying that if you have been directly affected by this virus, personally, in your family, or in your work. I am very very sorry for your struggles, for your health, or maybe even for your loss. For your hard work as an essential worker, for your mental health, or whatever “STRUGGLE” it may be! I am so fortunate to be able to stay home, to work from home, and to stay healthy and safe without much hassle, and physical interaction with others. I realize that this is not the case for everyone, and I feel for your struggles and compromises. From deep down inside me.
Below is a list. I really like lists.
Of “things” that I have observed over the past two months during this time of physical and social distancing in a large city in Europe. A list of positives that I have observed, not negatives. I guess I am an optimist ! I truly believe in this list, and all the good they are bringing with them. So here it goes.
~ Sleeping longer, and harder, and deeper, does all of us some good. Not that I ever had much of a struggle in this department. I rarely sleep LESS than 8 hours a night. 9-10 is my norm. I learned long ago that I need this. Body and soul. I really think that sleeping is healing, and boy do we all need more healing.
~ Taking time for the Outdoors has become a priority in our lives, rather than put on the back burner. This results in more children playing in trees, and together on the streets and parks. Dogs are getting more outdoor time, and full families are taking long walks together on weekdays! More gardens are being built, and many more balcony flower-boxes are being hung. More Bikeriders, rollerbladers, skateboarders, and so much more.
~ Hobbies that we may have refrained from enjoying for years can be enjoyed once again. We finally make/have ? time to play an instrument, sketch a picture, read full books faithfully, write in journals, cook and meal prep, clean out homes, repair our things, mend our clothes, create and develop, etc. etc. I am so thankful. This is living !
~ Phone and video Calls with loved ones, colleagues, new friends, old friends, community members or strangers, are also now scheduled into our days, and welcomed, loved and needed more than ever. Thank you Mr. Alexander Graham Bell for inventing the telephone, and to all you American scientists who created this “thing” we call the internet. How would we connect without it !
~ That being said, the Postal services are on overload these days. I hope that is because many more people are sending letters and gifts rather than buying ( and sending back ) so many purchases online, but that is another subject. Just think, when is the last time you mailed a letter other than for a holiday or special event ? Maybe it is time to do so.
~ Food, and quality time at the table ( please sans screen) has become the point at which we schedule our days. Although this is always the case for me ( yes I am almost always thinking about food ) I realize that others do not have this priority. I believe that this can only be positive. More people are being “forced” to cook more of their own food, or cook for others, to eat together, and eat more seasonal wholesome food. Let’s hope this stays so ! This is the theme of my cookbook, so I hope so much that this stays true.
~ Chivalry, Smiles & Hellos are on the rise. Is it just me, or are more doors being held open for one another, more smiles being exchanged on the streets, and more hellos being said to strangers ? I have finally met, and learned the names of many of my neighbours, and I didnt have the privilege of meeting before. Even with the struggles and awkwardness of masks and 2 meter distancing, I am still seeing this all over the city.
~ Physical & Mental Health has also become a priority for many, including myself ! Sure fitness studios are closed, but I am so inspired by all the fitness instructors, health professionals, and communities that are still making it possible to come together in some form, to keep us as healthy as possible. I personally having been taking more time for outdoor walks & runs, online fitness workouts, and continuing to attend my yoga class online. I also believe that doctors appointments shouldn’t be put aside unless they are very minor illnesses. But I am not a doctor so please consult your physician/s when attending to your health.
~ Lately, Learning is not being defined as sitting in a classroom. Maybe it is outdoors in the forest, or in an online class, or just doing research, or reading books. It has become a time to learn together. Teachers and parents alike are being forced to get creative. I am sure it is easy for me to say as I am not a mother, so thank you for all your hard work you educating people! I truly believe that students will recover, if not flourish from the different schedules that they find themselves in this year. Book smarts are not everything !
~ Local Business’ are taking huge cutbacks in their sales, or are they ? Although there are still a lot of Amazon users out there, I think that many more of us are asking ourselves before we shop, where can I buy this, and who can I support in the process ? The more local, the better. It lessens the shipping, and environmental impact, and we help out our neighbours and their bank accounts in the process. Please do your research in your neighbourhood.
~ Governments are being forced to address the weak points in their societies. Whether it be healthcare, social care, unemployment rates, foodbanks, pharmaceuticals, and so much more. I am so lucky to live in a country where I am supported as a tax paying, non-German citizen. This is different for all of us, but I do think we will see a many changes happen in 2020. It is truely time.
~ Unity. What I think is fantastic, is that we are all in a similar boat these days. No matter your race, your fame, your culture, your job, or your location. 2020 is proving to be a big year for all of us, and the stats of COVID-19 are not uplifting. But our unity is. Lets keep it that way.
~ People are so Generous and Kind! I just finished raising over 10, 000 Euro, thorough no resources, other than my own, to fund my cookbook project this year. It was 40 days long, and could not have come at a worse time. But, I learned that what you ask for you shall receive! And if you are kind and generous to others, you will be rewarded back with that same kindness.
And last but most definitely not at all least :
~ Mother Earth seems to really be befitting from the “slower” pace that is occurring these days. Unemployed workers in Pakistan are being paid to plant trees. Rare turtles are nesting at record speed on Thailand’s beaches. Pink flamingos flourish in Mumbai. As are BEES worldwide! The Himalayan mountains can now been seen from 100 miles away. Koala bears are returning to their home after the bushfires in Australia. The grey wolf population is recovering in the US. Dolphins are swimming in the canals in Venice. Luxemburg is the first country to make public transit free for all!
Air pollution is down, oil production is down, and flights are down. Some of this will probably contribute to a recession in 2020, but I have the feeling that in the long run, it will be for the better.
If you have read this far, thank you. I hope you are well. That you are safe, trying your hardest, and loving as much as you can. Until we meet again, Andrea
Ps. Below are a few shots taken from my phone around my community. Really nothing special, but beautiful moments all the same.
Pps. Thanks to my friend Sophia for this beautiful image you took of me !