It is a truth universally acknowledged that as soon as you have time on your hands, the desire to do the things you’ve been longing to do evaporates. The current quarantining of nursing homes prevents me from visiting my husband but gains me a whole day per week. And my upcoming trip to the UK now seems uncertain, which opens up acres of space in my diary. Plenty of time to write. Plenty of time to finish the dog-eared piece of tapestry I’ve been working on since October, and the 982 page book with my bookmark stuck for months in page 442. It’s not that The House on the Embankment isn’t a terrific read. It’s just so heavy.
From our old home town of Venice, news of locked-down friends. Some are enjoying a bit of down-time, some are feeling the isolation. We may have to organise an air-drop of clean socks for the friend who went to work ten days ago and then found he couldn’t get home. He’s remarkably chipper. Perhaps because he’s imposed a daily routine on himself, perhaps because he has the compensation of a well-stocked cellar and unbeatable rooftop views over a now deserted city. Most touching of all, the friend who lives without television, radio and Internet and only answers his phone when he feels like it. He knew nothing of the lockdown until he ventured into the street last night and the world seemed to have ended. Well, now he knows. But he has teabags and plenty of books so he’s not downhearted.
I too have teabags. Also wine, clean socks, books and extra time to do whatever I want. Regrettably, what I most want to do this afternoon, is watch movies and eat chocolate. A far, far cry from my upbringing which instructed me always to improve each shining hour.