A Strange, Secluded Time

A Strange, Secluded Time

How have we found these past weeks, during this time of isolation? What has sustained us, or pained us, during this period?

We have had so much time on our hands. It has been possible to sit back, and quietly consider our current situation.

There have, for all of us, been highs, and lows. By this last week of April, I feel that the highs have, so far, outweighed the lows, and hope that this has been the case for our congregation.

What have been the highs?

Online Worship. The wonderful effort, by so many people, to bring us our worship services. Last Sunday morning, the sun was streaming in, and a flock of noisy cockatoos was screeching as we enjoyed our meaningful service, so ably led by Claire, with much support. I have never heard (seen) our Lord’s Prayer, read ably, by Jessica, with two pictures of horse races on the wall behind the reader. The choir voices were mixed so cleverly by Ron.

Monthly Magazine. The consistently excellent Monthly Magazine – jam packed with information, advice, and wise counsel. The photos of our new church by David, and Robert, are bringing our dream to life. Sadly, I can’t have my weekly inspection as I drive home from having taken a client to Carramar at St. Mark’s.

I do hope that Carramar will re-start, as it is a tremendous support for many people.

Thank you to Ruth, Helen, and all the people involved in the production of our Magazine.

Zoom. Thanks to our son Stewart, the expertise of Tony, and many others, including a clever neighbor, for guiding us through the mysteries of Zoom. As two ‘technically dyslexic’ oldies, we can now enjoy church services, cuppa calls, playgroup, and family ‘get togethers’.

Google, U Tube, etc. We currently have time to watch many wonderful programs. I have caught up with the comedy, and musical genius of the brilliant Victor Borg, the magic of Riverdance’s first performance during the interval of the Eurovision song contest of 1994, and many other great offerings. We have also seen hilarious clips featuring dogs, toilet rolls, and, of course, Donald Trump. David’s emails have kept us up to date in the enforced absence of U3A.

Peace, and Quiet. All we can hear, for much of the time, are bird calls, bees, and the neighbour’s little dog which yaps all day. We have no pressures to be out, and about. We can finish tomorrow what we have started today. We have fewer ‘markers’ to remind us of the days. “Is it really bin night already? Which one?”

Friends, and Neighbours. We have only four driveways in our court. Elizabeth, and I, have been so well cared for with constant offers of help, and support. We recently had a 20th year of living here celebration (before social isolation) with these folk.

A Coffee Machine. Having had to change my daily ‘fix’ to home brewing, our friends, the Cropleys loaned me an excellent machine to encourage me to stay home. I am sure, however, that a return to ‘The Green Sage’, and ‘Hahndotff’s’ will be welcome.

Time to Walk, and Talk, and appreciate nature. We are fortunate to have choices of local paths. Our frequent walks are, however, somewhat fraught – with sharing paths with many bikes (hence my letter to last Saturday’s Age suggesting a slogan of ‘Bell or Yell’). Fallen trees, silent electric skateboards and dogs, call for caution. Last night, we shared the Mullum Path with a large kangaroo leaping through the bush. A wonderful sight!

Time to write letters and cards. We have posted over 50 ,keeping our local post box alive.

Time to really clean out our filing cabinet.”Oh, that’s where it was!”

Time to garden, and plant. Hundreds of sweet pea seeds to grow, and give away with the promise of blooms in spring.

Traffic, or rather lack of. However, on Wednesday, were we reminded of the potential for tragedy on our roads.

A carefully managed lockdown which has resulted in Victoria’s infection rate slowing.

Yes, there have been lows!

In the beginning, the lows were very real and raw! Fear, dread, and midnight insomnia. Would our friends, would we, be OK?

Missing seeing, and hugging our loved ones. Will they, their friends, and so many others, lose their jobs?

Concern for heath workers, those living alone, those locked down in aged care homes. Parents needing to home school and juggle work.

Missing special, and social events.Zoom will help us celebrate family birthdays, etc.

However, maybe a state of acceptance has been reached? We are fortunate to have support from so many people ,the above mentioned technology, and a considerable, continuing link to our church community, for which we are grateful.

Bill (and Libby)