No-one could have predicted that 2020 would be like this. And, though I try to keep this blog positive, I can’t ignore the craziness of these times. But please read on – there’s a plan…
2019 ended with major fires across much of Australia, with smoke from the South Coast bushfires giving Canberra the dubious distinction of having the worst air quality in the world. We all bought P2 masks and air purifiers, and learned to stay indoors.
Christmas was quiet. Carols by Candlelight had no candles, due to a total fire ban, and the smoke was too heavy for most of the family to come to Christmas lunch. New year celebrations were surrounded by controversy – with half of Australia burning, how could we justify setting off fireworks?
And then the bushfires came to us, and we all packed our Go bags and planned our evacuations. I was already planning this year’s egg – trying to work out how to acknowledge the fires without making it too negative. We worried about our South Coast neighbours, while stressing out about our own southern suburbs. We put out water for the wildlife and wondered if it would ever rain again.
Instead, we got hail.
Golf-ball sized lumps of ice that cut a swathe through Canberra. Hey, it put out the fires, so that was good thing! Pity about all those cars, skylights and roofs that were smashed in the process, resulting in Canberra’s biggest ever insurance claim, with repairs still going on two months later.
Surely it couldn’t get any worse.
But… then came COVID-19.
And all across the world life has changed, big time.
The novel coronavirus has turned everything topsy-turvy. Australia’s numbers of infected people have been behind much of the world up till now – we’ve been lucky. But as the numbers of sick people increase, so do the restrictions on our movements, in an effort to keep us all safe. As of last night, we can no longer gather in groups – 2 is the limit, indoors or out, unless you are a family sharing a house.
Working from home has become the new normal, if you’re lucky enough to work for an essential service, so you still have a job. Schools are closed, and parents are trying to become teachers. Life is pretty tough, but we are all learning new ways to cope.
Easter is nearly here, but what will it be?
How do we feed the hordes with the usual mass of Hot Cross Buns, when the hordes are not allowed to visit? How do we get together to paint eggs, when we aren’t allowed to BE together, and the shops are running out of eggs? And what would we do with all those scrambles?!
Well, come with me, and I’ll take you back in time…
Way back to the beginning, to when it all began. And WHY it all began.
When my parents first came to Canberra, back in the early 1960s, they were pioneers. They left all their relatives behind them, 3,700 kilometres away, to start new lives and build a family of their own. Once the kids came along, my parents decided that they needed to build some traditions of their own.
We began by decorating boiled eggs, using paints and crayons and melted candles. When the eggs got too good they decided to start blowing them so that they could be kept. And that’s where our eggstraordinary colleggtion began.
On our own.
In our home.
With just our family.
And we can do it again.
I can’t do a whole lot to directly help with the virus, but I can help you all to decorate wonderful eggs, all in the safety of your own homes. Over the next two weeks I’ll share ideas and techniques so that you can start your own traditions.
This is your chance to tell your own eggstraordinary tales!
And thanks, Liesl M, for creating the perfect egg for these crazy times.