Half the world away during a global pandemic
If you were to ask most people at the moment “Are you ok?” you would probably be met with a response of disenchantment or fatigue, as people continue to navigate the relentless lockdowns that we are experiencing all over Australia.
And for people like myself, an Englishman living over here in Australia, the main sense of disenchantment comes from a long-term separation from the people who matter the most: your family. I for one have not seen my family for close to two years now, and no number of Technological advancements can replicate the feeling of spending valuable time with the people who ultimately brought you into this world.
The erratic nature of Covid has obviously led to ups and downs all over the world. Whilst we felt we were in the clear and were the envy of the world, seemingly dealing with the Pandemic as a model example to everyone, my home country of England was seriously struggling with the sheer numbers of people contracting the virus, with it spreading like wildfire and taking many lives. From afar, it was a real concern for me and whilst I went about my life and business in as ‘normal’ a way as possible, I couldn’t help feeling constantly guilty and remorseful about what was going on back at home. Naturally, it was and still is a very concerning situation.
And now we’ve gone full cycle, with most aspects of life in the UK returning to ‘normality’ as we continue to struggle to keep the number of active cases down, whilst ramping up our Vaccine roll out to get to where my home country has got to in terms of restrictions lifting (though the numbers are still startlingly high). Seeing them all being less restricted and living with a sense of more freedom should give us all hope and make us feel that there is some light at the end of the tunnel. Now it doesn’t feel a million miles away.
Being reunited with the people that really matter will mean so much to me and I know there are countless people who are feeling just like me right now, wherever and however you have become disconnected from physical contact with important people in your lives. The recent Qantas advert campaign obviously illustrated this hope of reunion rather well and ‘Are you OK?’ day comes at a time where we should all reflect on the fact that we’ve all been in this situation together and we will all get out of this together. Ultimately, everyone has their own personal situations that have impacted them, just the same as everyone has their own way of dealing with such times.
So, if you ask me if I’m OK, I’ll probably say I’m good and feeling positive, but I could always be that little bit better. (Just the same as things could always be a lot worse!) What keeps me going is the thought of emerging out of arrivals at Heathrow, with my Dad waiting there for me with a brown paper bag with a Greggs Steak Bake in it. (If you know, you know) I’m looking forward to family meals, drinks with friends, live sport and watching football at a normal and sociable time, maybe even a European holiday. Likewise, I look forward to my family being able to return over here and create more happy memories. There’s a lot to look forward to and it really doesn’t feel that far away now.
Hopefully anyone who has been separated from friends and family will be reunited very soon. It’s definitely long overdue and something that we should all cherish!