Thinking back to this time a year ago, it seems so remote, a different and innocent time. In January last year I had decided to keep my camera always in my bag, in order to shoot more (though that didn’t last long). We went to a juletrefest – a Norwegian tradition about saying goodbye to the Christmas tree – and the church hall where it took place was packed with kids, their parents, and people from the congregation organising it. While not particularly religious myself, I enjoyed a long chat with a retired bishop who had seen some interesting things, while my son ate sausages and played with some friends.
Doesn’t that sound strange now? Talking to strangers in a social setting, and lots of kids playing together?
As January went by and February began, the news about the novel corona virus came closer. I tried not to worry too much – I remembered SARS and MERS, which were of concern but which didn’t after all spread world-wide – but then a number of things happened that remain seared into my mind, both pandemic-related and not, all mixed up …
… Norway’s first registered Covid case (February 26). My mother dies unexpectedly (March 3). WHO declares a pandemic (March 11). Norway goes into lockdown, with what the government announced were the strictest rules since WW2 (March 12). My mother’s socially distanced funeral (March 17).
It was a rough time.
As the first anniversary of these events is coming up, I wonder how I will react. There is and will be sadness, of course, of childhood and innocence lost. It is necessary to feel that sadness, but it is also crucial to look ahead. Vaccination is ramping up in Norway, the days are getting longer again, and hopefully, hopefully, we can all meet and be together without worrying come summer or early autumn.
Until then – let’s all hold on.
All the best from Jenny G.
PS: I’ve started playing around on Flickr again. More on this in a later post perhaps. Not sure yet whether it’ll take, but if you’re there – do look in on me and let me know 🙂