Day 25: Pressing reset

Friday, 10th April

Oh the joy of cycling along the Rhône after a month! I look at the world and at people’s faces with that feeling of waking up from some kind of hibernation. It is bizarrely intense, and in that sense, it reminds me of the way you feel when you lose a loved one: it’s as if the pain causes a shift in your perception – a bit like hitting a reset button – and makes you see things more clearly. It’s kind of raw. And you feel strangely alive.

Was all of this necessary for us to hit reset? Well, at least, I can say that I have a head start: a couple of years ago, I made a life-changing decision and gave up my nice, comfortable full-time job, which was making me mostly unhappy, to go freelance. Read « free ». It was scary but necessary. There is a heavy price to pay, and you have no guarantee you will get enough work, or the work you would like, but it is worth it. Even in times like these when I feel how precarious my situation could become. And I am not alone.

In the UK, BoJo is out of intensive care and is said to be « in extremely good spirits ». Until he recovers, it is his foreign secretary, Dominic Raab, who has taken over. I am relieved that he is out of trouble. He has been more fortunate than many. The number of deaths from Covid-19 in the UK is rising by nearly 1.000 a day – and looks likely to pass the 10.000 mark this Easter weekend.

Easter. Not sure what we are going to do about it. We are not religious, but it is normally a time we spend with family. This year, we cannot visit the grandparents, holed up in Paris and Sète respectively. Otherhalf will cook boeuf bourgignon, and I will hide some eggs for the kids in our shared garden, between the flower boxes and the basket-ball ring. And we will drink a nice bottle of red wine, and enjoy an hour of glorious sunshine.

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