We have now been in "Lockdown" in our own Valley of Happiness for 27 days. Because the flu had caught us, we opted for quarantine ourselves for the first few days.
On Saturday, the government chose to shut down public life step by step. Slowly we got used to the idea of not being able to go outside. For the time being no more coffee on the terrace of Los Naranjos, no more hours wandering in my beloved Granada, no more eating fish at the beach and no more walks through the breathtaking nature of the valley. Those first days were strange and we tried to surrender to the situation as it was. We were busier than usual: we followed the news in Spain and the Netherlands and Skyped every day with our children, friends and family. I called people who are alone. People were mostly in a positive mood. Following Italian initiatives, Spain, the Netherlands and Belgium clapped hands every night at 8pm for the nurses, doctors and other heroes who keep the countries going. The "contagion" of positivity seemed even greater than that of the Corona virus.
Then came disturbing messages from friends who worked in healthcare. Still other friends had relatives diagnosed with Corona. That further forced us to face the facts. After those first days full of TV, Skype and contacts with the outside world, we increasingly longed for silence, simplicity. The days were filled with meditation, yoga and fitness exercises on the roof terrace with the sun rising. With reading, cooking and baking. With looking at nature. With "outings" to the landfill and Mercadona. As it got quieter in the country, it got quieter in us. An educational time. My nature tends to reach out rather than to repent, while Cees' is the other way around. In a strange way, the silence was nice, partly due to the fact that so much confusing information came to us and the questions that arise about the future. Children lose jobs, people get sick. How's our renovation going? My mother lives in a house for people with dementia. We used to Skype via the children. Now that the possibility was no longer there, that contact also dies down. Fear and doubt don't help us. Focus on silence, radical self-care and love, the lessons of nature. Finding security in uncertainty. In the eye of the storm. Confidence in the possibilities offered by this crisis. The insights this time do not come through a self-chosen retreat, but through the imposed retreat in our own home.
The fear does not help us. That seems to be the lesson of Corona.