So here we all are, suddenly looking out at a very different world.
For us isolation is completely normal. A week can pass without us seeing anyone outside our immediate family and it is common for me to be completely alone for large chunks of the day. Right now I am grateful to have plenty of distance between us and the outside world. Of course, we will have to venture out at some point but only when necessary.
Buying supplies in bulk is also completely normal for us. The pantry is always well stocked with dry and tinned staples. The cupboard is always stocked with spare toiletries and dare I say, toilet paper. Coffee beans are also considered essential. We have frozen meat, bread, cakes and pastry as part of our everyday diet. I do favour fresh milk but always have a backup supply of UHT milk. I am confident we could survive for 2-3 weeks without shopping, no panic buying, just being resourceful.
Things that are not so normal are the disruptions to our forward planning and schooling situation. Our daughter was on the verge of returning to boarding school with her horse. Now, it is unclear how school will look going forward for human students, never mind the horses!
Almost all of the community events around us have been cancelled meaning that small outback communities are missing out on vital social interactions and much needed income.
On a more personal level I have been planning my first local sourdough workshop that I hoped would become an ongoing venture. It has taken some time for the right venue to become available but I had finally booked for early May. My friend and all round technical whiz, JJ has been getting my site set up to take online bookings and I had planned to start advertising as we speak. But, of course now is the worst possible time to be holding a communal food handling event. So, this venture will be shelved for now.
Several kind people have suggested that I set up an online workshop scenario but my vision was to showcase the outback and involve some local businesses to sit alongside the bread making. Bringing fellow bakers together in person to connect and share is something I also wanted to be part of the overall experience. But, perhaps our whole world is moving online. I truly hope this isn’t the case.
I will turn my attention back on the simple things that bring me joy; my family, our garden, cooking hearty meals, podcasts, pet goats and taking photos. Of course there is a household and a sheep station to run and we are still waiting on a decent rain. We can do all of these things with minimal human interaction, working from home is exactly what farmers have always done. I am very grateful for this.
I hope everyone is safe and staying strong and healthy in these uncertain times.