After blogging mostly every day for the first 100 days of South Africa’s COVID-19 lockdown, I took a full week off. This is weird. It feels like I’ve been gone for ages.
In fact I haven’t been gone at all — I’ve been right here, in my house, the whole time — and very little has changed.
Actually, a few things have changed: 1) I’m a year older, as I celebrated a birthday last Wednesday; 2) South Africa has tens of thousands more COVID cases and we are officially entering a viral surge; 3) Alcohol has been banned again and I feel like I’m living in the Soviet Union; 4) I no longer remember what day of lockdown we’re on.
I’m glad I took a break. I definitely couldn’t have kept up with those numbered lockdown posts any longer. But I’m disappointed I didn’t accomplish what I set out to accomplish during my blogging holiday.
In hindsight, I suppose it was unrealistic to expect I would write a memoir, redesign my blog, and come up with an entirely new plan for my future over the course of one week, during the dead of winter, in a global pandemic.
I did not accomplish any of those things. Here is a list of what I did accomplish:
- Cut-and-pasted some memoir-like bits into a Google doc. Hit save.
- Ate two delicious red velvet cupcakes.
- Ordered and ate a pizza.
- Exercised three times.
- Read part of a book.
- Counted approximately 27 new daffodil blossoms.
- Scrolled Facebook/Twitter/Instagram for approximately 47 hours.
- Listened to approximately 537 podcasts.
- Watched 39 episodes of Grace and Frankie.
- Pet each cat approximately 4513 times.
- Listened to Fetch the Bolt Cutters approximately 22 times.
- Purchased loungewear (online).
- Cooked one pot of soup.
- Completed one knitting project, started a second.
I feel freaked out about how little I’m doing, or want to do. Other people I know are out doing socially responsible activities, like walking around the neighborhood, hiking on the outskirts of town, cycling, shopping in stores (with masks on). Not only am I not doing any of these things, I don’t really miss doing them. I don’t yearn for the day when I’ll be able to drink a glass of wine in a restaurant. I don’t wish I could get out of the house. I’m not dreaming of future trips. I just…don’t care.
I’m worried there’s something wrong with me. But as a friend reminded me today: There’s something wrong with everyone. She’s obviously right.
Also the president made a speech last night, and I’ve noticed everyone in South Africa is in a pissy mood the day after the president speaks. Every presidential speech is a reminder we’re in a pandemic, things keep getting worse, and nothing is going to change for the better until at least 2021.
Did I mention there’s loadshedding in South Africa now, and the power goes out nearly every day for 4.5 hours, and loadshedding puts everyone in a pissy mood even at the best of times? Did I mention it’s cold, and it’s Monday, and basically everything sucks?
On the other hand, writing this post is one thing I did look forward to when I woke up this morning. Blogging, even when I’m in a terrible mood and have little to say that isn’t a whiney complaint, is one of the few activities that makes me feel quasi normal during lockdown.
I’m happy to be back. Are you happy I’m back? I don’t see why you would be but if you are, thank you.
I promise I won’t subject you to a post every day, at least not until I have more interesting and positive topics to write about. But you can expect a couple each week. I think the next one will be better.