Writers and visual artists draw ideas and inspiration from what they observe around them or from journeying with introspection into their past. The same applies to visual artists.
In the last few months, after the splendour of summer and being able to meet family and friends outside or even inside with windows open and keeping some distance, we have moved to a stale state. Gone are the 5 à 7 and suppers peppered with stories, fun and humour, gone are the celebrations and the carefree idea that “Ça va bien aller”.
As artists, our experience has been reduced to a bare minimum in the last month or so with the change of seasons and the COVID-19 increasing number of cases. We take walks on empty streets smiling at the few individuals that have ventured out like us, most of them wearing a few more wrinkles than last spring.
Gone are trips to the museums, stores or walks in town. With the restaurants and gyms closed, gone are the conversations you sometimes overhear that may spark a good story idea. With the weather turning, most of our time is now spent inside, prisoners of our own thoughts, anxiously waiting for the daily numbers of new cases, hospitalisations and death, distractions reduced to various screens bringing more bad news.
Spending time on the phone with friends has become reminiscing about the past or how they fare with the anxiety that is gripping our society. Gone are funny anecdotes about who they met and what they did last week, their discoveries and what they are planning next. Their lives now a reflection of mine, I hear my own resignation and frustrations reflected in their voices.
I am getting worried about some friends getting sick, discouraged and depressed, some overworked, while some are not working at all.
I still feel like one of the lucky ones but my own equilibrium is being challenged by the idea of not seeing anyone at Christmas.
We should be into our bubbly pre-Christmas season, running errands, cooking and baking in joyful anticipation of sharing with family and friends. The house is decorated, the children’s gifts are purchased but the spirit is missing with this uncertainty about Christmas hanging over our heads.
I am still hoping for a miracle, some kind of backtrack that will let us enjoy holding hands, kissing and hugging, hearing clinking of wine glasses and seeing sparkling love in the eyes of people that enjoy each other’s company and traditions. I hold on to past exhilaration, when you go to bed with a heart filled with love and contentment. We will get there again I am sure.
But for now, living through new experiences is being greatly reduced and we must find new ways of opening our senses and minds in order to keep on creating.
Take care and Stay safe !
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