I commented in February on my joy in reading the travel section of the weekend papers, finding new places to visit, a chance to travel in my mind, without moving. I joked later that the Italian lockdown would be a fab time to visit Venice as there would be but locals, no tourists, piazzas empty. Naive I was, oblivious, lacking awareness of what was to come. I watched in shock as Italy increased their shutdowns and quarantine and the spread of COVID-19 rose while the death toll climbed horribly.
Now is not the time to travel.
I am in lockdown too. This is week 11 of working from home. I am thankful that I am a public servant with a fulltime job and no mortgage. We moved house a few months ago, downsizing from a 2-story 4-bedder to a 1-story 3-bedder. I’m enjoying the new house but with four adults stuck at home all the time, I miss the space of the old place a little.
On the weekends, I continue to maintain my ritual of going to my usual cafe for brekky with newspaper. For the last two and a half months that has meant takeaway food and piccolos, consumed in my car nearby, with people walking by. Initially I tried eggs on toast but the knife/fork thang felt awkward so I’ve gone with a bacon and egg roll since.
The weekend travel section is no longer published in print.
While I have been able to continue with my ritual, it is missing a key part, travel. The SMH continues to publish some travel material online but it’s not the same. The idea of travel and being able to travel has become problematic. I renewed my passport and had plans for a big trip this year, saving my leave, preparing for a 6-8 week trip in Europe across August. No more. Those plans are cancelled, my partner’s Churchill project postponed. Maybe next year.
I want a holiday and I want to go away. Not yet. I remain hopeful that New Zealand may open as destination later in the year. I have been many times and would love to go many times more. Perhaps there is a little hope.