Tuesday 28 April 2020


“Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to take you in.” - RobertFrost 

Here we all are, cooped up indoors, observing the isolation and social distancing guidelines. We are all protecting ourselves from the invisible enemy, hoping thus to win the battle against the dreaded Coronavirus. Suddenly, many things we all took for granted have been wrested from us – but then again, most of us did not put up much resistance and willingly let go: Any sane, logical, thinking and educated person gave up those things willingly. We stayed home and protected ourselves but also our friends, our neighbours, our workmates, the strangers that we encountered every day, our whole community.

We gave up our visits to concerts, sporting events, the hairdresser, the pub, friends’ houses. We stopped going to the beaches, the picnic grounds, the malls, the cafés, the restaurants. Seeing relatives in distant suburbs or other towns was not an option any longer, visiting the elderly in nursing homes and hospitals was forbidden. Schools and churches closed, and numerous restrictions were placed on a number of social gatherings, including funerals, weddings and other celebratory events. Anything “non-essential” was postponed or cancelled.

Moreover, travel for pleasure is completely out of the question. Airports are no-go zones, railway stations for interstate or international travel are all but closed, while ships have been shunned, cruising for pleasure being unthinkable given the extremely high number of infections and deaths due to COVID-19 on board. Thus, all of us who relish travel and jump at the opportunity to pack suitcases and fly off at every opportunity remain grounded, our wanderlust frustrated…

Home suddenly has become more than simply the place we come to in the evening and spend some time at, before we venture out into the wide world again the next morning. Home is the place that we live in all the time, really live in, all of the sudden. The place where we eat, sleep, interact with family/housemates, where we amuse ourselves, where we must do things that we used to do elsewhere. Some of us cope better than others with this housebound existence. Some of us worked at home even before this crisis. Some of us are homebodies in any case. But those who lived out there for work, for pleasure, for socialisation, for meals are suddenly thrown into the deep end of the “home” and it is no wonder that they are disgruntled, bored, angry, stir-crazy.

Yet, we must be grateful for having that home to take refuge in. Think of the thousands of homeless people who must weather the pandemic any way they can. How many of those unfortunates will succumb to the virus? Think of the refugees, the institutionalised, the transients, the prisoners, the elderly confined in aged care facilities. All of those who are sitting ducks, extremely susceptible to becoming infected and possibly dying of COVID-related illnesses. Home is becoming a very attractive place even for those who spent precious little time in it under normal circumstances.

I, as a person who has travelled a lot, as an inveterate traveller if you like, am also a bit of a homebody. I enjoy being at home and never get bored here, my varied interests, multitudinous hobbies, countless projects and numerous pastimes fill every available slot of my time. Even when I travelled constantly in the past, every time I came back home, a surge of bliss filled my being. “Home, sweet, home” was all I could think of, never mind how exotic the place that I had just visited was, no matter how good a time I had had, no matter what interesting things I had seen, great people that I met, or marvellous experiences that I had had.

Now, at home, I am enjoying my “confinement”. Enjoy yours, take it as a holiday. Do things at home that you would do while travelling: Dress for dinner, organise special activities, surprise yourself and others. Become an armchair traveller in your own living room: Watch travel documentaries, see your old travel photo albums again, watch your travel videos, reminisce on good times you had while away with your family, housemates. And of course, visit the links below where fellow travellers drag their old snapshots from the archives to kindly share with us…

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Ruby Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.

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