Published: 22/05/2020Once upon a time everything was perceived as normal. Monday to Friday was a simple routine of morning panic, school run, work, shopping, cooking, cleaning, washing, story time, and an hour off relaxing, hopefully with a glass of Chianti, before 8 hours of sleep and the joy of the whole process happening all over again.
That was until the 9th March when Prime Guiseppe Conte, our Italian prime minister and coronavirus (COVID-19) changed our world. We watched from our living rooms as our normal stopped. The restrictions implemented were some of the stringent of all nations, restricting the movement of the population to 200m from their homes, except for necessity, work, and health circumstances. A new world, but for how long?
Telling Isabella and Cordelia they don’t have to go to school until further notice is received with glee and excitement. “Schools out for summer”, once said Alice Cooper, but schools are all out for, well, nobody knows. To begin with Isabella and Cordelia found lockdown a huge game of hide and seek. We were all hiding in our homes and seeking those, from our windows who dared to go outside, or heroically continued to work to help others. Days passed with little controversy. The daily routine of home schooling, remote working and house hold commitments rolled on. The delight of afternoon movies whilst we, the parents, came to terms with our new working environment became our new normal. Once a week shopping trips, washing down all the food, showering after every excursion was a routine all to its self and took hours. Had we become prisoners in our own homes?
As the days rolled into weeks the girls found themselves in heaven as we all evolved to our new life. San Francesco di Sales in Citta di Castello, Isabella and Cordelia’s school started home schooling via google classroom. School starts at 8.30am which believe it or not, is, in our lockdown world, quiet early. The only benefit is we could all be in our pyjamas. No more uniform for any of us.
After 66 days without venturing outside we were told that measures were being relaxed and we could go out. It all seemed very strange. What would await us? Would it be safe? We all decided we would have a picnic. Sandwiches duly made we venture out with our masks. It was a beautiful spring day. Driving in the car for Isabella and Cordelia seemed to be a new experience. Windows down and the rush of air felt exhilarating. It was like a two week holiday all rolled into an afternoon. We tried to feed some ducks, constructed models with dried wood, paddled in the lake and played with our accompanying toy friends. Our egg mayo and cheese and cucumber and sandwiches were devoured in the silence of nature. The kiss of the golden sun on our cheeks brought joy and hope to us all.
It was good to be outside!