Today is Friday 3rd April. DAY 8 of lockdown for South Africans
And you know what I feel like today?
I feel like blogging. Every day I wake up and have plans for the day. But you know what? I’m feeling gatvol right now. Here I am, typing away as though possessed by a greater force. Even this happens sometimes. Nothing substantial or part of word count for course deadline or adding to unfinished/unedited chapters of my biography I’ve worked on for over three years. No. I’m gonna just keep typing away, free- writing style like I’m David Helfgott at Carnegie Hall. Let see if this works. I’m tired of sticking to the challenge of the day, wondering when I will be brave enough to go and buy some more milk and FLOUR goddammit? What’s with everyone baking these days? On Tuesday, the first time I ventured out for essentials, to the Spar (cos it’s the closest and smallest and we’d run out of eggs, milk, rolls and, you won’t believe me- toilet paper) I looked around for some more cake flour too as we’d run out but no chance of that! Everyone I know has suddenly gone all bloody Jamie Oliver on me. Just this morning again, I see a delicious and easy (i.e. no more than 5 ingredients) recipe for corn bread. But it needs BEER! And we don’t have any bloody beer. So, stuff that.
Some sort of routine helps. Discipline, routine, challenge. Until now, it’s kind of kept me going, the routine stuff though admittedly it only appears to happen at the edges of the day: the quiet reflections at first light, and then at about 5pm, a 15- 20 minute run around and then a swim! At 6pm in the evening. That’s one of the weirdest things happening to me right now. I hardly ever swim – even at heat of midday- but straight after my run around the garden, I pull off the cover and whoosh down the stairs into the freezing water and swish my arms around madly and shoot my legs to one side, and then the other and I feel like Kim Kardashian and I don’t even know who she is but everyone seems to think she must feel like a million dollars with all the hype she gets. Not now, though. Shoo, that’s hectic hey? How we are suddenly all the same, and none of that means a damn thing.
But I least a feel a sense of bliss in that water. Then I lie in a shavasana position -which after a year of yoga I think means like you’re dead with your arms splayed as wide as possible and your legs in the widest V – and let the water cover my hears ‘til I hear nothing. Like nothing at all. It’s as if I’m in the deep blue off a coral reef cliff in the Maldives. And yes, I’ve been there. On honeymoon if you want to know. But never to New York, or New Zealand or New Delhi or New England … or to see the gorillas or northern lights though I have been to Europe a lot. Oh my gosh, I love Europe. That’s why I keep going back. And to think now of Italy and all the dying…
No. I will not go down that road. We will not recognise the world after all this. It will be a New World. And I hope to see more of it but then we’ll all be back to square one, won’t we? With air pollution and more plastic in the ocean and people all travelling to see wild animals or eat wild animals or just trample on the earth.
Just this morning I see the first death of a family member of SOMEONE I KNOW. It’s that close. Oh, please WEAR your masks if you go anywhere. I know they feel weird and you think you’re weird and look funny, but THEY HELP. And we need all the help we can get.
So, I wanna tell you what my message is for today.
DO WHAT THE HELL YOU WANT TO, OKAY?
Kids, if you don’t feel like doing MATHS today (‘cos I certainly don’t know what to do with q in the equation x + y@e6q+ q flipping + 6- SIN COS TAN stuff) just don’t.
(PS. You know those FB posts with #21 days of gratitude things? I tried that one too. After I realised I’d run out of flour AND marie biscuits AND beer so no bloody carrot cake, fudge thingies or corn bread for me, I thought I’d be more grateful. So, I said I was grateful that I had my four children around me. But you know what I’m most grateful for? The fact that I don’t have to teach them or get them their desks. Yes, I don’t know how I did that either. #grateful for school teachers #notgrateful for school runs)
And people like me who have NEVER meditated in your life? Just don’t if you don’t feel like it. I understand exactly. I downloaded Deepak Chopra & Oprah Winfrey’s App thingy like last week and I now get the email every day and start listening and then… and then, I download some more emails. Cos you know why? I suck at it! There I sat this morning at 6.30am this morning – yes, the view is beautiful #grateful – trying to ‘get as comfortable as you can’ knowing that I am NEVER gonna get comfortable with both legs crossed and my palms facing up to the sky ‘cos my hip just doesn’t work the way it did years ago and truthfully? My hands automatically fall inwards again. I don’t know why.
Want another YOGA app? I can send you tons of recommendations. Just don’t ask me how you see what you’re supposed to do on a tiny screen (without glasses ) and concentrate when the dog barks outside and your adult son sings at the top of his voice ‘Lukey, Lukes makin’ a pooh pooh”. (One of those esoteric family things, don’t judge)
ZOOM you say? Sure! I’ve been on Zoom and everyone there seemed like they were all productive and motivated and doing stuff so that when they all said goodbye, I imagined them all contributing to the next vaccine and there I was. On the other end of the dark screen.
No. I’m kidding. It’s not always like that. Things do happen. Like now. I can barely even think let alone write because my work- at- home husband talks SO LOUDLY on ZOOM (even through a closed door!) you’d swear he was auditioning for the position of head evangelist at the next G8 summit. #grateful for passionate husband.
I want to end off now because I’m even boring myself. Life is often better in pictures anyway, so they say. Just don’t send me pics of your next ‘amateurish’ painting attempts when even my stick figures look like they’re missing an arm, because I cannot paint. Or sew. And it makes me feel so completely inadequate that I may have to just stare at the clouds for a while. But I’ve done that already too.
Here’s some pics of Week One, if you’re interested. Shaving heads (seems like a thing), waiting with eagerness for the rubbish collectors and waving madly with a thick throat as they drive up the road, noticing the recycled sculpture in our garden which been there for years and years and wondering where he ( Mamba from Hout Bay) is now.
JUST A FEW SOME MORE TIPS:
# think of those who are confined, in small spaces under constant threat of abuse. And when that gets too much (because for me, that’s the real killer) do as Dr Arielle advised in this picture that I’m including here;
#know that this too shall pass. It could take longer than you think, but to put it bluntly, no- one knows when or quite frankly, how long they have on this earth;
#to counter this very pessimistic thought, with the most cringeworthy saying of all time, carpe diem.
#oneweekdown #twotogo #thinkitwillbemanymore