Thursday 28 May 2020

In these strange and uncertain times...

I'm exploring my neighbourhood making bigger and more varied loops seeking out Dispatches from Elsewhere. I came out of the railway tunnel like I so often do, and noticed this colourful sign that I'm certain was not there the day before. Again I was flooded with anticipatory excitement. 'This is it!' I thought, mistakenly believing the line at the bottom was an arrow, and in the bushes I would find a clue (or even a little door...but let's face it, even I knew that was unrealistic but my mind was willing it to be). I love that I'm getting these little highs of delight and amusement. I am indeed seeing the world with new eyes.

I explored a short cut through an alley and discovered someone had written a whole stanza of a poem in pink chalk on the wall. I posted a thank you on the local FB page but no one has claimed ownership of the action, nor explanation as to why. It's hard to read in the picture so the verse is here as I'm not sure what the copyright rules are on the reproduction, however it's about the magnificence of experience beyond our humdrum existence.

Then just round the corner I discovered some small plastic crosses had been discarded artfully on the street next to a sad ant drawing. I don't know what it meant but it felt like part of the puzzle...

Each of these discoveries feels like a 'clue' and brings me a rush of delight and a feeling of joy in this very small existence that I'm currently living as we ease out of restrictions.

You can see a lot of this on my Insta if you want to join in the fun (or the crazy, not entirely sure which?)

Are you chasing whimsy and magic in your life, in these strange and uncertain times?

Linking this throwback to strange days with #MondayMurals 

Wednesday 27 May 2020

This & That

I love the light in this photo - it's not a B&W photo but it looks like one. A reminder that things aren't always as they seem or what we see is only what we think we see...

In case that picture was unacceptable, a more traditional offering for B&W weekend challenge. It made me think I might go back and work on my #Haunted collection.

This is one of my favourite covers - note that it does have some swear words in it so not sure if that makes it NSFW (lyrically, visually it's fine). For the overseas readers, Triple J (radio station) puts out albums of the Like a Version tracks each year. Worth checking out to see who decides to cover what, and what they do with it.  You can check out others here or the original of Matt Corby's Brother here).

Do you have a favourite cover? Link with #SundayCovers.

Linking with #PictorialTuesday #SundayBest #ThruMyLens #FotoTunes

Musings Of A Tired Mummy
My Random Musings

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Monday 25 May 2020

What would you write in a letter to your pre-COVID self?

There is a meme going round asking this question. When I saw it, my first reaction was 'Nothing. My preCovid self was doing it all right. It's my post COVID self that might need a talking to'. I asked some of my friends the question. Their answers were interesting. Missed opportunities, fears of staying at home, instructions for things they should have done and of course, stocking up on toilet papers jokes. For me, however, I think my preCOVID self was making the most of all the opportunities out there. A friend said to me, when checking in over ISO "You really take advantage of enjoying what the city has to offer, this must be so hard for you". I think that was a fairly accurate description.

However, as I mentioned before, I am a little changed from this experience. It's taken me by surprise. I was sure I'd be the first person at a restaurant when restrictions eased, however, so far we've stuck with take aways and having friends over. I've been running a poll with friends, asking if they've eaten in a restaurant yet. I'm more cautious than I was. I'm not sure I like this. This is not the person that sent us 13 degrees shy of the North Pole to be attacked by polar bears. This is not the two concerts in one night so as to not miss a thing mindset I used to have. This is not who I was back in March. It is apparently who I am now. I don't see it as an improvement. It doesn't 'feel' like me.

There are articles floating round on this 'new' attitude, and I could see a bit of me in this one. Rafiki Mwema has a webinar on Stepping back into the new normal which I plan to check out. I want my preCOVID self-back. I'm too old to waste time not sucking the marrow out of life. 

I have organised a group of friends to do a Mystery picnic come June, and I've my allotted 5 friends over for a dinner and dance (and champagne celebration) for the last Hot Dub at Home to farewell this not-so-splendid isolation, so it's not like I'm sitting around doing nothing....but still, I'm not who I was...and it worries me.

Hopefully it's just a minor adjustment, like physio after an injury. I guess noticing and not liking it is a good start.

Would you have a message for your pre-COVID self?
Or is it your post COVID self that needs a good talking to?

Linking with #NanaHood
Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Musings Of A Tired Mummy

Saturday 23 May 2020

Dispatches from Elsewhere

This photo popped up in my memories,
like it was a sign from the game.
I got a high at the sight of it and couldn't stop grinning.
I just loved the series Dispatches from Elsewhere! Well, to be honest, I loved Episode 1-9 of this series. Episode 10 felt a little like a letdown but I'm not entirely sure what I needed it to be. So I've gone straight back to episode 1 to watch again. Which is something I've never done before but I'm just not ready to let the feeling go.

If you liked A Midnight Visit or Dark Lake (or Alice Underground for those in the UK) or any other of those immersive experiences, this show taps into that magic. For me it's not just a passive manipulation of feelings in a tv show, there's an emotional shift that I take away with me. A tangible energy I carried out of the living room and into the outside world.

In the first episode there's a line that sums the experience up perfectly when he says "Everything outside seem better than it did before that, like the colours are brighter or the world looks like a different place...I wanted to keep feeling that way...I was walking around looking at the world through a new pair of glasses".

After I'd started watching the series, I was suddenly walking around noticing things. While taking my phone up the road to be fixed, I stop to look at these strange new signs (that were actually just COVID conspiracy signs). Next to them is a plaque saying this was the site of the Order of Oddfellows. I was overwhelmed with a rush of joyous adrenaline and excitement, thinking I'd discovered a secret. I felt that momentous 'it's about to begin' tingling...However, Order of Oddfellows is not as exciting as it sounds and WAS an actual thing from last century....adventure thwarted (disappointingly). However the elated mood carried me though the day.

On twitter someone described it at the show we really needed now. I couldn't agree more. It's like a crazy adventure and therapy at the same time. It won't be for everyone. But if it is for you, then get ready to follow your divine nonchalance.

Linking with #RubyTuesdayToo

Friday 22 May 2020

ISO reflection

A sign off  in an email from the director of the Sydney Festival gave me comfort this week, so sharing as I think it's helpful to hear as we slowly ease out of this mess. "There will be so much need for a recovery and when the time is right we will be there. Until then stay safe, crank up the music and dance a little bit longer".

The joy is out there, waiting to be had.


Linking with  #WeekendReflections #WonderfulWednesday #WWOT #WWOAT #AwwMondays and #MySundayBest

Wednesday 20 May 2020

“She sighs, breathing smoke through her lips. "Might as well dance.” ― Genevieve Valentine,

Linking with B&W weekend challenge
It's no secret I'm a huge fan of electroswing so there's little surprise all things Gatsby appeal to me. I think the music embodies the fun and freedom discussed in this quote by Colleen Moore:

"“They were smart and sophisticated, with an air of independence about them, and so casual about their looks and clothes and manners as to be almost slapdash. I don't know if I realized as soon as I began seeing them that they represented the wave of the future, but I do know I was drawn to them. I shared their restlessness, understood their determination to free themselves of the Victorian shackles of the pre-World War I era and find out for themselves what life was all about.”

This week I'm going back to the 20's, kind of...still with Postmodern Jukebox. I love the fun of these...(original here).

 Weirdly this cover below is how I actually think the song goes...I always get a surprise if I hear the original version (here). 

This is actually a colour photo. With no colour.

As I've discussed many times, when feeling down, you might as well dance.

Linking with #FotoTunes and #MondayMusicMovesMe

Sunday 17 May 2020

Covid in pictures - Share My Snaps!

I was picking up my daughter from work in Bondi, and as I waited, I noticed the Lush store was closed, and had obviously been so for awhile. This filled me with sadness, as it was an image of what the world had become.

 Then I began to notice the world had completely changed visually, as we took on new practices.

The foot paths and shop floors are now strewn with masking tape or paint, telling us where to stand.

And we queue. For everything.

And yet....
 The normally bustling venues are empty. Completely empty.
 There's something a little disconcerting about the emptiness that I still haven't quite got used to. I suspect that's a mourning of what we've lost, or on behalf of those businesses.

The forlorn abandoned playgrounds and parks.

Now one of the most familliar sights is discarded masks. In the streets, in the bins, all over the place.

As we ease out of lockdown, I hope to document some cheerier signs of the time. Like this school on my dog walk that put up balloons to celebrate kids returning, and make it seem less daunting for those with anxiety about it.

May we all cheerfully celebrate what becomes our 'new normal' over the next few weeks.

 Linking with #ThruMyLens #MCoW #PictorialTuesday #KeithsRamblings #NanaHood #WonderfulWednesday  #TheRandom
Musings Of A Tired Mummy
My Random Musings

Thursday 14 May 2020

Reflections on Singapore

I like all the lines and curves in this shot. Then if you look again the buildings are reflected on the roof and Marina Bay Sands is reflected in the background and to it's left, the dome of City Hall (? Not entirely sure).

It looks unlikely I'll get to Singapore again any time soon, but I will be grateful if the world starts to chug along, gaining steam as it returns to something resembling life as we knew it.

Stay safe everyone!

Linking with #KeithsRamblings


As we ease out of restrictions and our numbers fall, we are tentatively full of hope.
My child's school announced they were going back full time next week. Then they reverted back to the original plan of 2 days. I understand the difficulties of what the teachers want to do, and what they worry is the right thing to do. I too am fluctuating in decisions almost daily.

The teachers at my kids schools have been amazing and gone so far above and beyond their normal roles. The media and government has done a great disservice to them, but that is for another post.

The schools are easing back and then the Premier says don't go on public transport at peak times. So how do you get to school on time?  I start to wonder again if they should be going to school at all.

It is a vulnerable and confusing time.

I looked out the window and just saw hope. Hope that we will relax into the new normal, just as we did with the lockdown.

Hope that our numbers stay low.
Hope that people find work again, or get their jobs back.
Hope that we stay healthy. Long term.

And most of all, hope that we can just forget all about this soon.

Linking with  #TrafficJamWeekend 

Tuesday 12 May 2020

Double the fun #SundayCovers

I know I'm kind of cheating but I love Post Modern Jukebox's 1950's version of Khalid's Young Dumb & Broke (original here)

and their '60's version of Feel it Still.

(Original here)

So dust off the letterman jacket or bouffant that beehive and dance!

Link will go live Saturday-Monday. Add your favourite covers.

Linking with #FotoTunes and #MondayMusicMovesMe

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“You need the noise of your friends in space.” ― M. T. Anderson, Feed

I am still getting great amusement taking photos of the moon, this time at 10 am in the morning! The explanation as to why we see the moon during the day is here. I also learnt this week how the moon got a lot of it's craters.

The moon, like friends, is always there, even if you don't see it. It also sometimes turns up unexpectedly giving much delight.

Linking with #SkyWatch

We are all a little changed...

I thought I'd been rocking the ISO, even though for me, my world had changed 100%. I'd introduced nightly board games and Badminton and outdoor garden games like Finska. We'd amped up sunset with the LED version of Badminton (I think the neighbours must be glad the nights have cooled as we were noisy!). I was making the dinners more interesting and getting more exotic with the cocktails. There were lots of laughs and good times.

For Mother's Day, I'd organised a huge feast to be delivered the day before for lunch (as we were working on the actual day and I had to visit my mother). The restaurant failed to deliver the food in time, and it arrived at 2pm. I was devastated. I knew I was blowing it out of proportion but I couldn't help it. I really plummeted emotionally. That was a sign something wasn't 'normal'.

We went to dinner at someone's house. It was in a different suburb (only 3 kms away but not a street I've visited), and I got dressed up in heels and make up. I drove (as I'm still not ubering or public transporting) so didn't drink at all. However, it was like I was drunk with the giddy elation of it all. The next morning, it was on a high that lasted well into the evening. That was a another sign that I'd actually been affected more than I realised.

The last one hit me as it happened. I usually walk around drinking tea, everywhere I go. Because I've only been walking the dog around the block, I haven't filled the thermos up in 8 weeks (we shut in a little early - I've been following the OS best practice). As I was making the tea to visit mum (so there was no chance I infected her by touching any of her stuff), I felt a burst of joy. This simple thing I'd not even thought about, I'd somehow missed. My subconscious celebrated what it saw as a return to 'normal' and I suddenly felt excited. It was very odd.

So even if you are having a good time and enjoying the most of ISO, note that there is still an underlying stress or anxiety that you may not even be noticing. It is there and affecting your resilience and balance. Be kind to yourself. This ISO stuff is harder than we think.

On the positive - we will all be high as kites on natural endorphins doing the simplest of activities soon enough!

Linking with #TrafficJamWeekend

Friday 8 May 2020

The Start of Things to Come...

I had noticed one or two cafes closed for good, just as I was driving past, so it didn't personally hit me, I just felt sad for everyone. Everyone who is limping along, hoping their business can survive.

I had ordered some food from Two Good Co and was picking it up the day CarriageWorks announced Voluntary Administration. This hit me hard. I was there quite regularly for art exhibitions and talks or concerts. It's a venue I love.

We are beginning to reopen but we haven't seen the end of these types of collapses and closures. Will the restaurants survive with their limited patronage (Covid-allowed regulations)? Will the venues be able to continue with music and art? Can a theatre operate in a cost covering way while keeping the patrons safe?

I was mourning everything when it shut for lockdown, but now I'm mourning again as I realise we don't quite get back all that we lost.

I hope for everyone the flurry of activity brings the necessary returns to survive.

To not leave on a downer, we went out to dinner (to a house in the next suburb!) and I got dressed up in heels and make up and even though I drove to minimise infection risk (so didn't drink), I felt so elated the next day! It felt SO different and new and exciting to be out and somewhere different. I could bottle that feeling. It was the burst of happiness I really needed.  It carried me well into the next day. So there are definitely good times ahead. We just need to make sure we don't get locked down again.

Don't get careless. Stay safe and socially distanced (and remember the app doesn't work properly on iPhone so don't rely on that. Keep up to date with CasesNearMe.Com and keep sanitising when out and washing your hands where possible. Get tested if you think you have been in contact with a possible COVID case- even with out symptoms. Let's beat this thing and surge forward.

If you love the arts, or love Carriageworks, here is the petition to save it.

Linking with #TravelTuesday #MCoW  #WWOT #ThruMyLens #OurWorldTuesday