As we approach two years of pandemic life, I’m realising more and more that it’s unrealistic to expect my writing habits to have remained unchanged in this time. I’m not the person I was in January 2020. Neither are you.
I’m talking about the kind you get after socialising with gusto. The hangover that leaves you emotionally and physically drained, without the need for one too many daiquiris the night before (though the two do often come in hand in hand).
I've become somewhat of a social media addict. I'm not sure if it's been exacerbated by the last year of lockdowns and deprivation of human contact, but that there is my confession. So when my lovely friend Bronwen asked me to write an essay on the theme of Vanity for her passion project, Artemis, I knew I had to address this issue, and perhaps even tackle it head on.
While we’re all seeing more of the inside of each other’s homes on our screens, it’s more important than ever to be honest, accepting and non-judgemental about the places we live in.
Not only was it the start of a new decade, but I would be entering it in entirely alien circumstances. While a year ago I would have imagined a good old family ‘do’, a large gathering, a night out with friends, a fancy meal, or a city break abroad, I would instead be spending the day mostly on my own, in the confines of my one-bedroom flat, as many others will have experienced this year.
I can't quite believe that this website has reached its fourth year!
My latest piece for Dear Damsels – which is not, for once, a poem! – shares the story of the ice cream van that made me cry on a regular basis during lockdown, and the hope it eventually brought.
Each memory I make is usually plated up with some sort of delicious dish.
Since we're staying safe inside with nowhere to be, and perhaps often very little to actually do, we don’t really have that excuse of busyness for our terrible timing for texting back. We really are always available now; and never has there been a more vital time to stay connected.
Spring is all about movement: springing forward, and springing up; new life, new beginnings, moving on, growth, freshness. Even its synonyms are mobile: elasticity, bounce, hop, bound.
It’s ironic, then, that this year's spring is defined by stillness.