A part of the list

Sometimes it’s good to make lists. One day this year I started scribbling ‘Things I will do when this is over’. It’s a random assortment that might resonate with others. Also, I want to make sure I don’t forget.

1. Take a DIY course

My flat has patio doors which never fitted correctly. It’s a long story. One of those annoying problems that I was always planning to get fixed. Then the first lockdown hit and I worried that if I opened the doors, they wouldn’t close. But if I didn’t, I couldn’t get air into the flat. I worried about finding a carpenter to fix it, due to the virus and the potential cost. Basically, I just worried. And whilst I wasted all that mental energy, if I knew my way around a screwdriver better I could probably have fixed it. Maybe.

Self-sufficiency remains an elusive goal but I am working on it. For the next apocalypse.

2. Have drinks with neighbours

I’ve written about how this year put much more emphasis on local neighbourhoods. We realised that the people who lived next door were our lifelines in a crisis. When it’s safe to do so, I’d love to open a few bottles of wine and toast our survival. Even have some kind of street party. That sounds quite grand but what’s more likely is plastic cups and mini-sausage rolls in the car park. Whatever. Local community is important and let’s drink to that.

Value what’s right outside my door.

3. Hug people

Now usually I’m not much of a hugger. Amongst my closest family we hug when we meet but I don’t do air kissing. A simple Hello will do for greeting friends. But this year the sheer lack of physical contact has taken a toll. We should hug. People need hugs.

Be demonstrative with feelings.

4. Spend time by the sea

A highlight of my year was managing to get away to France and spending a few days by the sea. There is so much healing about it. After so much beige lack of variety, my senses were engaged. Breathing sea air, feeling the sand between toes, hearing the waves crash. Each day I’d look out at the view and the infinite blue. One day I was lucky enough to see dolphins.

People who live by the sea have a certain style and I loved watching them. Several women seemed to have a striped beach dress to easily remove for a swim and throw back on to walk home. Surfers were impossibly fit and bronzed. Older people took to the beach later in the day and stayed for a chat after.

I need to find my own sea.

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