What is it with all of the bread making? My social media feeds are full of people baking bread. I hadn’t realised we had so many bread lovers around the world.
I think there was initial panic-buying of bread and milk (as is always the case when we’re in danger of flooding, bushfires, cyclones, long weekends…) but most bakeries still seem to be open. And trading. Perhaps though, there is still a shortage of bread. Which I gather has led to the panic-buying of flour as lots of people assume they’re going to go all Martha Stewart or Little House on the Prairie and bake their own.
Sourdough seems to be a bit of a thing at the moment. And banana bread.
And yes, I’m being glib. I really don’t care that people are baking their own bread. Fortunately, I’m actually not a huge bread fan… and I say fortunately as it’s the thing most coeliacs miss after being diagnosed as good gluten-free bread is like some sort of utopia-like pleasure-dome. Or unicorns.
It’s very surreal this world in which we’re currently living. Most of us—particularly we avid (Gen X or above/below) social media users—haven’t been privy to anything like this before. Sure, there’s been short-term, or brief and isolated catastrophes (floods, fires, hurricanes) but nothing like this. Most of us weren’t around during world-wide wars or ‘the great depression’ when everyone ate tinned spam and and traded favours with American soldiers for silk stockings.*
We’re unaccustomed to the fragility and scarcity that comes with it. I can’t believe I’m living in a world where we’re having conversations about the availability of tinned tomatoes or chicken.
I ran out of lemon juice last week. It’s hardly an essential item but I have some fish in my freezer and use bottled lemon juice. I have no idea why there’s none available, but there was none to be found.
So I had to forage like in the old days and buy actual lemons. To squeeze. I’ll be growing and harvesting my own food next. Or maybe not.
But amidst the chaos there’s hope. We saw it here in Australia after our recent bushfires. The kindness of strangers. The generosity of neighbours. The unlikely heroes. Then: volunteer firefighters and passers-by rescuing koalas from burning trees. Now: medical and health personnel, supermarket staff , people putting teddy bears in their windows and local businesses banding together to work out ways to continue to operate.
I saw a delightful feed on Twitter the other day. I mean it’s early days… our lockdown is only just about to start in my part of the world, but others are imagining a life after the Coronavirus threat. Happily it’s not just their Sunday brunches and avocado turmeric acai bowls they’re missing. Most talk about hugging friends and family. Human contact. Being able to be close to someone without being arrested.
And then there’s this.
A reminder that ‘some’ good may come of this. And I’m not meaning to diminish the tragedy this will bring to many lives. But, time spent with family; reconnecting with the basics; finding more flexible ways of working; a reminder of what’s important; and government stepping up (mostly) to remember there’s no point in focussing solely on an economy if there’s no one left to enjoy it.
Have you started baking bread? Planting crops? Doing jigsaw puzzles? Any positives for you at all?
* Some of my historical knowledge may solely be from television and movies.
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