It’s popular these days to write about your COVID-19 experiences. I am no exemption and will follow the trend. My perspective will be somewhat reflexive – lockdown-related restrictions made me realise what I miss the most.
I spent two first months of the lockdown not only outside of my own home but also outside of the country I live in for the last seven years. I was visiting my boyfriend in Germany when the emergency measures were introduced gradually both in Germany and Switzerland.
There were no practical restrictions to come home – I could have done it anytime. Borders were never closed for people able to prove their residence in Switzerland. But I decided not to. The situation was unclear, and there was no unified information about how the virus is spreading. A lot of travellers were trying to get home as soon as possible, so the trains and roads were full. Then the train connections were decreased, and Switzerland flew dedicated aeroplanes to bring back those who were travelling. I wanted to avoid the fuzz. My employer informed us that we are working in home offices with immediate effect. I even managed to arrange my friend to pick up my cat from my apartment to stay at her place. No collateral damage, everyone happy.
I don’t want to sound cheesy, but I’ve indeed spent a great time in Germany. It was the first time I’ve ever spent so long with my boyfriend. It worked out well. We struggled with COVID-19 restrictions, waited for weeks for my new sneakers to be delivered, shared working table, cooked, watched Netflix and coexisted peacefully. Towards the end of April, I started feeling homesick, and I realised that there are certain things I am missing.
Of course, I missed my cat to have this in writing. The feeling didn’t surprise me, after all, I am in this specific relationship for almost nine years already 🙂
The thing I missed the most (after my cat) was my home. I have picked it out carefully, the view on the Alps and Lake Lucerne from my balcony still takes my breath away, I enjoy high ceilings and spaciousness of my home. It took me years to furnish it perfectly. I realised that I am attached to it in a way I have never been connected to any of the rented apartments. Now when I am back, I understand that I feel genuinely content here.
I missed my books. I missed books in general. For two months, I was reading books electronically, and I was not fond of it at all. I am sure now that I will never give up paper books. It is just a different feeling. I can use an e-book while travelling or on vacation, but I will still always return to the comfy feel of a paper book, with a cup of tea and a plaid in a chair.
I missed my bath. We’ve had a shower in Germany, and I was dreaming of having a bath towards the end of the second month. Back in Riga, in my old flat, I lived with the shower only, and I have never complained about it. Call me spoiled, but this is such a great relaxation tool! Or maybe I am getting older 🙂
Funny, but I missed Swiss train rides. I realised this only yesterday when I took a train to Zurich to save my office mailbox from bursting. It is still the most productive place I have ever worked in – a driving train. If I had a chance, I could do this for days – playlist in my ears, a cup of coffee and a laptop at the window table, villages, fields and woods passing behind the window. I felt happy being able to experience it again. And I know I am not the only one being productive on trains.
It is good to be home 🙂