A couple of weeks ago, I was working at one university, teaching a group of second year students about globalisation every week, whilst holding down a job at another nearby university in the widening participation department, which helps young people from diverse backgrounds to see the path to higher education. Meanwhile, I was peripherally involved with mass grave protection and some people who are doing the most amazing and inspirational work. My life was so full of interesting people and projects that I actually dared to complain about it. Then along came a pandemic, which is just not funny at all.
This week, I am teaching scrabble (plus adding scores in columns of hundreds, tens and ones) to some small children, losing a cat (she came back though) and doing lots of yoga. Things I've found in pockets have included freshly laundered crisp packets and sand, which is bringing back old memories.
The other thing I'm doing this week is brushing off some children's stories which I'd written way, way back when my boys still wanted fabulous tales told about themselves (we had no TV in our rainforest). I even got the watercolours out and splashed around. These tiny yellow frogs are called, according to my herpetologist friend Amy, ‘dendropsphus microcephalus' or ‘small headed tree frog’. They sing a high pitched “riti titi titi!” I remember them being the most beautiful buttery yellow, and quite tame.
I'm loving this project, so even if nothing comes of it, I'll have spent the coronavirus quarantine happily.
I don't necessarily believe that we should ALL be achieving anything during this time - it is stressful, and my own response is to have something to do. Naps are also very much recommended, and deep thinking. My wish is that we come out of this kinder as a global society. These are interesting times.