Tuesday 7 July 2020

Travel in the time of the Coronavirus Covid-19

Today we would have been starting our Camino walk, the last 120 kilometres of the Camino Frances from Sarria to Santiago de Compostela in northern Spain.
For the previous twelve days we would have been in Morocco and before that in Córdoba, Cadiz and Madrid in Spain.

Instead this terrible virus Covid-19 is raging throughout the world and we are fairly much housebound with state borders closed within our country and the government forbidding us to travel outside of Australia. With planes not flying that is easy to obey, the rest is not so easy.

Having to stay home in the winter is a depressing thing; I really hate cold weather and now there is nothing to do and nothing to look forward to.

The first seventy days of lock down were filled with quilt making, big jigsaw puzzles, lots of cooking including bread making, Italian lessons on Duolingo, garden pruning and daily walking a small loop close to home. As the weather has got colder walking has lost appeal, too much cooking equals weight gain, and there is a limit to how many quilts and jigsaws you can do. I am currently reading one book every day, travel books mainly.

I called this quilt # Stay Home

I have lost the urge to complete this quilt, called Bei Ricordi

1000 and 1500 piece jigsaws fill the evenings.

Cooking for special occasions celebrated at home alone, hand made bread and lots of old fashioned cakes & puddings. Very retro things like steamed jam pudding, slow cooked creamy rice and family favourites handed down through several generations. The slow cooker has produced some delicious new meals with exciting flavours, especially Middle Eastern. Cajun pork and beans was a winner!

Our olive trees have had a thorough pruning this year as we weren't rushing off overseas. 

I am grateful that in the country we are relatively safe, I am grateful that Australia has not had the same catastrophic numbers of deaths as many countries and I am grateful that we live in a country where we are well supported through disasters such as this.

I am very sad for the people of Italy, and especially for our friends in Panicale, Umbria many of whom depend on tourism for their existence. Life is tougher for them.

I pray that a vaccine will be found soon and that we can return to some sort of normal, the 'new normal' they are calling it. But how will that be and will we be able to do the things we had planned. With every week we are getting older and less able to travel the free-wheeling style of travel we love.

I saw a great quote from Sonia Pallai back in April.

    "We are stuck. Stop with tourism, stop with racing, walking, trekking and sport.
    Stop with our social relationships, those made of hugs, kisses, dinners, but also of gyms,
    meetings and conferences.

    What never stops these days are thoughts."

I am trying to be positive and I am certainly thinking ahead ... I am reading books on walking the Via Francigena!