Since Friday 13th March 2020 (Friday 13th, yes really!) I have spent 95% of my time in my apartment on Lamrock Avenue, Bondi Beach.
Lamrock is known for being one of the ‘’best streets in Bondi’’ due to being immediately adjacent to the world famous beach front. My place is super-close to two bus stops – making easy access to whizzing into the city for work.
Over the last 8 days or so, the coronavirus (I call it ‘CV’) has started to feel unstoppable and Bondi has been hitting headlines for all the wrong reasons.
#1 It made front-page news worldwide last weekend as an estimated 35,000 (!!) people / idiots hit the sand to soak up the sun. This was happening as CV deftly brought the world to its knees.
#2 One might say karma soon followed those selfish needs to get sandy toes. Bondi is now a CV hotspot – making it one of the worst places to be in Australia. And here we are again – hitting headlines linked to scary facts.
I have considered Bondi as ‘’my best place in our world’’ since I met it in May 2014. Right now, it’s the best place to catch CV in Australia. End scene! I’m sure you can imagine the fear enveloping everyone in the area right now. It’s an odd place to be.
If you’ve ever been to Bondi you’ll know; it’s a tiny spot – a seaside town. You can walk from one end of the beach to the other within 10 minutes. The shops, bars, cafes and gyms that make up Bondi can be circled within 20 mins.
It’s full of cashed-up go-getters who think they are invincible. It’s teeming with backpackers here for a good time, not a long time. It’s easy to see how CV would have gained pace here.
Anyway! As I sit holed up in my apartment for another night in (not that I would be going out anyway but I like to have a choice!), here’s what I’ve learned over the last fortnight.
Isolation and working from home. What life is really like.
What I planned
That Friday I got sensibly sent home from work, I made a pact with myself. I would do all of the below to keep myself moving, grooving and engaged in my work from there on out:
- Train early – outside every morning.
- Train late – outside every evening.
- Use my (new) yoga mat for at-home yoga, meditation and cardio workouts too – daily, at least once.
- Be washed, dressed, bed made, cuppa tea ready to go for a full day of work ahead.
- Delete social media (so I don’t get distracted or waste time from work).
- Use my spare time to read more.
- Write more.
How life has panned out thus far
- I am extremely grateful to have a job that allows me to keep-going from home.
- Productivity wise; I have had some of my busiest days since joining Finder three months ago.
- I am proud to be part of a team who rallies together to find a way to make things work. Our Crew are doing everything they can to help people in need during this difficult time.
- I am constantly on my toes; ready to pivot on a sixpence in support of Finder’s mission and the needs of our Crew.
- I am fully aware that anything could change at any moment and am taking everything day-by-day.
- Working out hasn’t been how I imagined it at all. I have been going out both morning and evening but it feels weird out with my mask on. Running feels restrictive and I spend 90% of my time concerned with how close I am getting to others on my travels.
- I definitely haven’t covered as many miles as I normally would but I am staying active twice a day.
- *One day I missed an evening session and I felt awful that night and off my game the next morning – being housebound really takes it out of me. I must keep up my training and those crucial fresh air breaks.
- My diet needs attention! I am eating lots of cheese on toast with Worcestershire sauce. Also lots of chocolate. I am drinking multiple cups of tea a day. None of this is the end of the world but it’s something I am aware that I need to curb as these habits make for an unhealthier me.
- Workouts on my yoga mat are fun with a decent playlist. I’ve been taking it back to old school Britney Spears days. Today I listened to William Shakespeare’s The Tempest for free via Audible to bring me back to my English Literature roots.
- Days fly but also feel like they roll into one.
- I am still using social media. If I cut it out altogether it makes keeping in touch with everyone difficult.
- On the whole I am positive. I have high hopes that this will pass and I believe in the world. Somehow we will be ok!
- The one thing that I am finding the biggest ‘problem’ is; the not knowing when it will end. If we had a definite day in the diary it would give us something to aim for. Obvs CV has other plans right now.I was thinking how this is ~similar~ to the days I spent farming in the outback in 2014. We used to moan it felt like it was going to be ‘forever’ before we completed our 88 days.But this was a fleeting comparison when I considered the facts; of course, it’s nothing like it at all. Farming had an end date in sight. Farm days also included friends, fun and lots of boozy nights in the hostel beer garden to keep us entertained. CV offers none of this. Uncertainty is a tricky monster.
Self-management is a thing
I am reading more, I am writing more – not all of my writing makes a blog post but I am getting creative. Writing a daily journal before bed. Writing notes in a pad whenever I feel like it.
I have created this post in a Google Drive sheet and have found it so much easier to write this way. I think when I write directly into WordPress it gives me some sort of pent-up pressure that it needs to be perfect as I type. I often find myself editing like crazy and then often never hitting ‘publish’.
Creating this post in a sheet this evening has reminded me of my days typing my university essays into a word document. It’s been an enjoyable process and something that feels encouraging for me to write more. A silver lining of isolation life? I’ll take it!
I’m proud of you
I am watching everything that is going on across the world. With my beady ‘lil eye, I see what is happening in the UK. I see my friends dotted across different parts of the globe. I see everyone doing their utmost to keep their heads above water.
I am so proud of my NHS worker friends. So proud of my Aussie friends working in healthcare. So proud of all my friends who have lost their jobs but are keeping themselves together.
To everyone going quietly out of their mind but doing it with a brave face; I’m proud to know you.
What matters most
These last couple of weeks have given me a lot of time to reflect on what is most important to me. I’m sure you feel the same as me on this one.
It’s sure as heckers reminded me how much I value my FREEDOM. Since being away from home I have always known ‘’I can be home within 24hrs if I need to be’’. That’s been a safety net – if I need to come to you in an emergency, rest assured I’ll be on the first flight outta here. Right now; I don’t have that luxury.
Right now; I honestly have zero idea as to how soon I would be able to leave Australia if I had to do so. I can’t spend too much time dwelling on this or it will weight me down. I am riding that mental-storm at the mo.
I always miss my family and close friends, that’s a given and something I live with. The fact there is no date in sight of our ‘’next reunion’’ irks me. But as ever, I will remain positive and hopeful. It was meant to be in April (cancelled) and the next one after that was due to be September – September I am holding out for. Come on world, we got this!
I recently applied to adopt a dog from a rescue centre. Check out this little guy and tell me he doesn’t look like my kinda boy?! Eerily similar to my little beloved (gone since 2011) Dodger. I’m sure their characters would have been wildly different – as you can never replace your dog.
I got a call a few days ago to go to the next stage (which would mean meeting him) but I had to weigh everything up and unfortunately decline.
Right now my whole life is being considered in terms of ‘needs’ vs. ‘wants’. If anything takes a turn for the worst here, what would happen to the pupper?.
I had to let my head guide my heart. I had to say no. One day I will fulfil my dream of a Jack Russell pupper but right now; sensible decisions only. As much as I want a pup, it’s not a need right now.
Please take this as a good reminder of you making need vs. want choices – all things need to be extra-carefully considered right now. Life is different now. It’s time to audit every area of your life. Weigh up all the pro’s vs. con’s and action things that only make the absolute best sense for your future.
My wish for you
From the bottom, top and all around my little heart – I wish you all the best in what you are going through right now. The familiar words ‘’We’re all in this together’’ have never been more true.
Whatever happens, I firmly believe – as long as we are alive we have a chance to go on to live better days. I implore you to keep your chin up, be the person that has a kind word for others, be the one to crack a joke every now and then.
#Stayhome as much as you can. Workout indoors. Cut back on the crappy foods. Be sensible with your social media usage. Up your self-care and in every situation; make good choices. For your now and for your future; the right decisions are in your (clean;) hands.
Thank you for reading