Sunday, June 07, 2020

Year of Wonders

Ah, the blank, intimidating page, especially having been MIA for several months. I started the year with great blogging plans though God, obviously, found that amusing. And so, in late January, I was winging westward, through busy, bustling airports, on planes without one empty seat. Then, several weeks later, returning on a plane with barely thirty passengers, through airports like echo chambers to a situation I had never imagined.
I've occasionally thought it would be nice for the world to stop spinning so hectically, to step aside from all the noise and busy-ness, to have time to just sit, for the only thing on my to-do list to be to 'breathe.'

I got my wish. And all I can say about that is: be careful what you wish for.

And now we're on the set of a sci-fi movie, (or in recent days a horror movie) or maybe in the pages of an historical novel like the one I recently finished - Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks, a novel about the plague. Not this one but that other one way back in the 1600s. Chosen randomly from my to-be-read pile, the parallels were chilling. Social distancing? Quarantine? Horrifying numbers of deaths? Who to blame? All there in the village of Eyam in 1666.

Now we've been on lockdown, wearing masks, social distancing for what seems like forever. With distractions at a minimum, we busy ourselves with simple things - gardening - because Mother Nature is a great comforter; cooking - because we still have to eat; baking -just because, even Winnie the Pooh likes a little smackerel of something with his tea; sleeping - because the 'sleeve of care' needs constant mending; praying, because all of this is bigger than us and we're not in charge; yoga because you're only as happy and healthy as your spine, and breathing because once you stop it's all over.

As far as finishing long standing quilt projects, I'm experiencing my own Year of Wonders. No doc or dental appointments, no meetings with friends, no book discussions at the library, no walks in the park, no shopping - apart from essentials, no trips....I miss all of that. But there is a silver lining. All those quilting projects? They're getting finished now!

Since this time last year I have finished an amazing - for me - number of quilting projects - more than I can remember finishing in any other year. And it's only partially due to the lockdown - the reality of mortality has finally sunk in.

 With no where to go, time to breathe, "Sit!" and "Stay!" even an old dog can learn new tricks.


Elephant's Child said...

How I love your quilting projects.
As a chronic introvert the lockdown and social distancing has come relatively easily for me.
I continue to read, garden and avoid social interactions. I feel less guilt than I do usually on all those fronts.

Marigold Jam said...

Well done to you for those lovely quilts - wish I could say the same. I have found that I am getting less done rather than more and my creative mo-jo has all but disappeared along with the lockdown! Your words as always just what I would have said if only I had the skill with words that you do! Glad you were able to travel back to your bunker before lockdown prevented all travel. Take care and keep safe.

Bijoux said...

Nice to see you back. Those are lovely quilts. Do you make them for specific people?

I loved that book when I read it, probably 10 years ago. Recommended it over and over again.

Wisewebwoman said...

I'm happy to see you posting again Molly.

Yes, it's a creative time, I'm working on a book and an absolutely fabulous knitted blanket which is about 2/3 of the way there. Covid has released a flood of creativity for many of us and that could be the upside.


Ali Honey said...

Thank you for my Birthday Wishes.
I will seek out that book as I have read about what happened in 1666.
Settling to sewing ( patchwork or Quilting ) seemed to be the thing I found most difficult to get on with during lockdown. I kept finding gardening or baking or reading or other enjoyable things more what I wanted to do. Finally I got over it and am back sewing I'm glad to say.
We are very fortunate ( so Far ) in NZ with our return to near normal and no new cases of Virus.
I hope you both stay safe and well.

Pam said...

You're back! Welcome! Yes, I'm shortly going to have finished 3 quilts so far this year, whereas I normally do two a year. Yours look beautiful!

molly said...

EC - Thank you! It feels great when you put that last stitch in a quilt. I'm not much of a social butterfly myself but I'm really missing get togethers with friends.

MJ - I've seen that the lockdown has got you blogging more though, which is good! I'll have to get over there and have a long catch-up read soon.

Bijoux - Yes, I usually make them for specific people. Maybe I'll blog about some of them. I have thought that, just for myself and family, it would be fun to make a little journal with pictures of each quilt and how, and for whom, I made each one.

WWW - It was, for sure, time to hit the pause button. I think it's given many people time to reflect on their lives and priorities. Unfortunately I don't seem to have the same level of inspiration to write as I have to sew during this time. Hats off to you on your book!

Ali - Since finishing hand quilting on the smallest of those quilts my sewing get-up-and-go seems to have got up and gone off somewhere! It may be a temporary inability to decide which UFO to tackle next. Glad that things are going well and returning to normal in your country.

Pam - Yes, I'm back. I hope to post more often than twice yearly from now on! I did eventually manage to figure out why I couldn't get on my blog. I suppose I really ought to knuckle down and get serious about the inner workings of my computer, but there always seems to be more interesting things to do such as quilts to make, books to read, stars to gaze at....

Lee said...

It is good to hear from you, Molly. I love your quilting...beautiful work.

Being the hermit I always am, nothing has changed for day to day habits remain the same.

Take care...stay safe. :)

Gemma's person said...

Hi, Glad to read you again.

Secret Agent Woman said...

Beautiful quilts. I'm working from home so I have no more free time than I ever have.

Relatively Retiring said...

I've visited Eyam many times in the past, as I lived fairly near. It's such a profound true account of sacrifice and bravery - although not everyone submitted to it voluntarily. As true a record of human nature then as now.
Stay as fit as you can and keep quilting (and breathing).

molly said...

Lee - Thank you. I think finishing these projects helps me feel useful at a time when many of us are questioning what exactly our purpose is, or if we even have one.

Gemma - I am to finally post again. Thanks for checking here never know!

SAW - It is very satisfying to make something that is not only useful, but beautiful too. Thank you. I'm not sure from your comment if you mean you have more, less or no free time since working from home??

RR - It must be quite an experience to stand where they stood in Eyam and breathe the same air!

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Pauline said...

Molly - we re-emerged at almost the same time! Good to read you are safe and keeping busy. Family illness, rifts in the family fabric, and now this virus have conspired to keep me from blogging. I have been keeping a COVID-19 journal since March when our state was shut down. Perhaps I'll find blog fodder in those pages and come back here more often.

molly said...

Pauline - I hope you find that fodder, I always enjoy your posts. Life does have a habit of getting in the way.....