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Isolation Inspiration

My thumbs may not be greener, but I’ve become one heck of a voracious gardener. And thanks to YouTube, I’ve completed 5 kilometre runs in locales like Australia, Rome, London, Hawaii, New Orleans, New York, Utah, California and Epcot, and hiked… with water buffalo in Malaysia.

I’ve patched and mended old clothes, hand–dyed and sewn new ones, built shelving units, fences, and storage boxes, and taken up studying piano again for the first time since I was twelve.

It seems the pandemic has turned a lot of us into big time achievers. Many, many people have stepped up, in completely amazing and wonderful ways, to teach, inspire and entertain us during the lockdown… Who among us hasn’t loved hearing Patrick Stewart recite Shakespeare’s sonnets?

Jools Holland, OBE, DL bandleader, singer, composer, television presenter and founding member of the band Squeeze (whew!) sat down in front of his piano each Sunday in April and May and gave us all free online lessons in playing boogie woogie.

The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden has charmed us with videos of Fiona the Hippo, penguins, and so many of the animals in their care, all happily slapping their way through the zoo’s empty pavilions.

Dominic Monaghan (of Lost, and Lord of the Rings fame) brought positivity, enlightenment and messages of hope for “3 minutes, 5 days a week” on Instagram, from the first days of lockdown.

I’ve wiped away tears of joy at the images of a car parade, and a small, grinning girl, happily waving to her friends from the front window of her balloon-festooned house.

AND there were the spontaneous balcony sing-alongs. 

If you think about it, these have been extraordinary times. We’ve each been given the gift of time to step back and examine how we live our lives, to think about who we are as people, who we want to be, and to determine how we’ll go about caring for each other going forward.

We’re sharing the experience of this virus with every other living person in the world, and that in itself is an insanely profound thought. It’s inspiring to witness the resilience and creativity of people the world over, and to be thankful for the opportunity we’ve been given to explore and pursue our dreams and passions.

We’ve seen people find positivity, hope, and creativity everywhere – whether it’s in gardening, surfing the web, or in simply reaching out a virtual hand to a neighbour in need – and I wouldn’t trade that for anything!

How have you stayed inspired and creative during the isolation?

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