Pam and I have been in self-isolation for two weeks tomorrow. That’s because we arrived from Australia (on probably the last cheap flight we’ll ever experience) after the lock-down notice from the Government.
When the “bubble” was announced we were joined by our daughter Rosie and for part of each week, our grandson Ernie.
I am sure that if I had been born now, I would have had an ADHD prognosis, and fed Ritalin. Instead I was just threatened with violence, by both at home and at school, every time I “fiddled”. I have always found it impossible to stay still for any period. I remember somebody once describing my mind as that of a gadfly. I was puzzled about this description at the time, but when I became Mayor that gadfly brain became very useful. I could deal with dozens of issues at any one time as my brain happily wasn’t interested in detail. it just wanted to be able to frolic through issues and decide which one was the most important to apply a systemic solution.
So, this ADHD brain has been trapped by Covid 19. Forced to stay within our site. Productivity on many fronts has been extraordinary. Pam, who gets things done, has been in charge. We have bottled fruit. We have made chutney. The entire outside of the house has been stained. The garden is in fantastic order. Weeds daren’t show their heads. The chooks seem to have accepted the lockup and hourly visitation has become normal. Their roosting house leaking is decreasing thanks to careful attention. I still can’t get the chooks to cooperate with each other. It doesn’t seem to come naturally to them.
The garage is almost completely sorted out. When the new house and garage were built much “stuff” was dumped there. Including boxes of drill bits which a mate of mine gave me 12 years ago when his uncle died. Unfortunately, when we lived in temporary lodging while our house was being built, most of them got soaked during a flood and thus were rusty. Two days work has removed all the rust, and they are all packed ready to deliver to anybody who would like to use my dozens of spares.
We have little rituals already. Rosie is an extraordinary cook and so my waistline is growing and I am lamenting taking my mother’s corset to the tip. I have made myself a promise that today I will eat less. So far, I have failed. Tomorrow, Garry, tomorrow.
We have read books. Each day I read the Guardian and the Economist in the UK. The Washington Post, and the New York Times, in USA and other papers there, until I use up my free allocation. I read Newsroom (more about this later) here in NZ and the Spinoff. I then read the Press on line and listen to RNZ, every spare minute I have. There’s lots of them.
I was deeply involved working in communities around NZ, but especially in the South Island, following the introduction of Rogernomics, and the devastation this caused. I well remember one meeting where we had the Women’s Division of Federated Farmers (who saved the farming sector in my opinion) and a group of communist ex-minors, laid off from the mines on the West Coast. They were working together on how we could rebuild the South Island economy. We have to get back to this level of collaboration again. The Women’s Division can bring the scones…I still dream about my meetings with them, and their brilliant morning teas!
So, this week I will volunteer to be the one who goes to the supermarket.