“Do not ask your children
to strive for extraordinary lives.
Such striving may seem admirable,
but it is the way of foolishness.
Help them instead to find the wonder
and the marvel of an ordinary life.
Show them the joy of tasting
tomatoes, apples and pears.
Show them how to cry
when pets and people die.
Show them the infinite pleasure
in the touch of a hand.
And make the ordinary come alive for them.
The extraordinary will take care of itself.”William Martin
During our recent short trip to Brisbane I had the opportunity to do something that felt extraordinary.
I have been here at our farm with my husband since mid February. It’s been fine – we have the garden and space, fresh air, our dogs, and access to the internet. We have books and music. There’s plenty to do. I was originally suffering from another infection that made me self-isolate, and then as Coronavirus ramped up we made the decision to go into a self-imposed lockdown, well before it became law.
We have had a few groceries delivered that I order by ticking a box or sending an emailed list and then hoping for the best. I’m grateful for these local services, and always happy with whatever we get, even though it is often the case that less than half of our simple list may be available.
So, while we were in the city we took an opportunity to go to a small local fruit and vegetable market – the kind with a delicatessen counter and a coffee cart out the front.
Oh my goodness the joy of excellent take-away coffees, our first in a long time! Even better, I had the luxury of choosing fresh produce to bring home to the farm with us. The little shop had excellent social distancing and hygiene practices, I wore my mask and followed my own protocols, and I was able to fill my basket with fresh cheese, milk, bread, pasta, fruit and vegetables. I had forgotten how wonderful, and how privileged it is, to be able to shop like this. To have choice, and money in my pocket.
To be honest, I felt a little overwhelmed and emotional to have this unexpected opportunity. It was suddenly a BIG DEAL to be able to shop like this – to shop in a way that I took for granted only months ago.
This morning we will dine on home-made milk coffee, toast, and fresh fruit with yoghurt. It’s a bittersweet pleasure, because I can’t help thinking of the people all over the world who cannot enjoy this privilege – the privilege of safety, of shelter, of being in a country that locked down hard and early, of someone to love and be loved by, of access to savings, of food in the cupboard.
I wonder, what blessings are you finding in your own life that you too have taken for granted?
How can we all be anything but changed by 2020?
Thinking of you, and sending morning smiles and birdsong, Nicole xx