This morning after I walked the dogs, I left them in our flat and turned around to go back outside. I needed to walk a little bit more and not with the creatures pulling me in every direction and watching diligently out for them, dissuading them from trash or other dogs. And while we are not in lockdown, I decided today was the perfect day to go support a cafe that I really enjoy by buying pastry to take away for a Saturday morning treat to greet my partner with when she wakes up. I stopped on the bridge…Ana chuckles at how much I love the view of the canal. I do. I must admit it. I stop along bridges and often take a picture. This picture of the canal tells me more about the seasons and what is happening more than most of the places I stop in Berlin. I take pictures of this space in fall, summer, winter and spring…with tour boats and trash boats, ducks and geese, changing graffitt and sunlight.
This morning I took another breath because on the sidelines we can see how the world is shifting in this pic and yet the canal isn’t touched by it all at all. In fact, there is probably less trash in it right now because more and more people are staying inside.
I reflected on some conversations I have been having with friends over facetime and coffee about the larger implications of this pandemic life. In some ways, there is a pause in some cities that gives Mother Earth a fighting chance to heal just a little. Planes aren’t flying to cause that pollution. More and more people are inside and that cuts down on smog. Dolphins have returned to Venice canals.
What does it all mean?
I reflected on my low level anxiety this morning and almost at all times. Will we go on lockdown? What does this period of life mean for our theology? our views of each other? Isolation and connection?
This isn’t business as usual and will we ever go back to it? We will tell stories of before the pandemic and after.
A friend of mine this week texted that she was thinking she should be journaling this all down and I thought…yes! We should be documenting every step. What happened next? What are we feeling and thinking? What became essential and what was missed? How did it all begin and how do we feel after a week? two? three? a month? two? How will this all unfold?
So write it down. Write about your feelings and what is happening around you because your story will be different than mine. Your feelings, worries, anxieties and joys will be different than mine and we will all want to remember every bit of when COVID surrounded us as a worldwide thing.
Let us begin now before we make this into a memory.