What Makes You Smile?

Exploring my neighbourhood with my camera.

With Covid restrictions this year many Australians have missed their usual overseas trips. We are a travelling nation and frequent flyers. But 2020 and Covid-19 put a stop to that.

The silver lining in these travel restriction has been getting to know our own backyard. I have lived in this area for over 20 years, and today was the first time I actually crossed this walking bridge at Como.

I took my digital camera, first time this year , and took a few snaps. With everything going on around me I had forgotten how much I enjoy just getting out there seeing the world with new eyes. That’s what I love about photography. Seeing the details around us. The things we are too busy to sometimes notice.

Then to finish my photo outing having lunch with a good friend overlooking the water was just the icing on the cake.

Stay safe where ever you are, and don’t forget to keep finding reasons to smile.

What makes you smile?

Sunday morning breakfast.

Fresh spinach from my patio garden with poached eggs and homemade bread topped with avocado and vegemite.

In spite of all the challenges of 2020 I hope everyone finds their tiny reason to still smile ❤️

BREATHING

mona-lisa-with-face-mask-3957982

We are now halfway through 2020; a year of turmoil and change, but also a year of hope for a better life. Hope because the events that have unfolded this year has made us all appreciate what matters; love, family, human contact, freedom, time to reflect, our health and waking up every morning still BREATHING.

In fact, BREATHING seems to have been a common thread through the chaos we have experienced in 2020.

First the bushfires that ravaged such a vast part of Australia in our summer season and continued into the start of this year. Smoke filled the air even in places far from the burning bush. It blanketed Sydney for months and many stayed indoors because of the worst air quality experienced in our normally bright and clean city. Our BREATHING was restricted, and we felt it in our lungs when venturing outdoors on bad days.

Then Covid-19 started surfacing in China, a virus affecting the respiratory system and in worst cases requiring ventilators to assist with BREATHING. By March Australia saw a surge in cases and we went into lockdown. We needed to contain the virus as our hospitals and medical supplies were not ready to deal with mass infections. Mass production of both masks and respirators commenced in the anticipation of hospitals potentially filling with people not being able to BREATHE by themselves.

The restrictions has helped Australia manage Covid-19 so far, and we are seeing very few cases emerge now apart from travellers returning or cluster cases. We are in a new phase of easing up on the restrictions, though many businesses continue to work from home. Some are going back to what they used to do, as if everything is back to normal, but we are far from it. Right now we are in ‘holding our BREATH’ mode to see what happens next.

To top it off amidst all the turmoil an American police officer arrested and killed George Floyd. His last words ‘I can’t BREATHE’ was captured on video and plastered on headlines online everywhere. This gross injustice lead to a massive protest movement across not only America but the world. Amidst the dangers of Covid-19 people gathered in peaceful protests wearing masks to voice their opinion about the injustice against people of colour. It escalated and within days America was in chaos.

George Floyd’s last words echoes what has been the issue for many all of 2020. For people of restricted freedom and privileges, it has been an issue for a lot longer.

What are we being told? What is it we need to learn before we can move forward to a new normal?

BREATHING is our life force. Not just for us humans. It’s the basis of all existence. Animals breathe, plants breathe. We all breathe in coexistence and codependence. Our breath brings us back to a balanced life, it grounds us, it sustains us, it nurtures our bodies. We must breathe to exist.

A new normal must make BREATHING a top priority on all levels, from daily interactions to top corporate visions. It’s that simple. And also that complex.

Thoughts and Ramblings on Covid-19 -Anzac Day

 

Today is Anzac day in Australia.

People normally gather in the suburbs, in parks or near beaches to honour the many soldiers that have fought for our freedom, and there is an official parade in the city.

Not this year. Due to the restrictions we could not do this. Instead, the government urged people to honour a minute’s silence at dawn by lighting a candle and stand in their driveway or on their balconies.

This morning I woke at 5.50am with no alarm. My spirit wanted to join in and feel the connection in spite of us all being apart.

I put on my gym jacket over my pjs and made my way out on my balcony. It was still dark outside but I noticed quite a few lights out on the street and on balconies across from me.

As 6 o’clock ticked over the distant sound of the bugle playing announced the time to remember and take a moment of silence. It was both eerie and very special. I felt proud to call Australia home.

As the sun rose the only sound I could hear was the birds chirping. I breathed in the fresh air and decided now would be an excellent time to follow with a Yin yoga session. To breathe, to reflect and to look inwards.

After 30 minutes of stretching and holding poses I never thought I could do just 5 weeks ago, I watched the sky turn a bright blue. It was a beautiful autumn day, and today yoga was not enough. A brisk walk was what I needed after a week working from home, and I put on my shoes and cap and ventured out.

A walk in my neighbourhood full of bright sunshine, blue sky and trees adorned with amazing autumn colours.

What a special way to celebrate Anzac Day.

Wishing you a wonderful day wherever you are.

Stay safe and keep washing your hands.