Within this time, I've lived like a hermit. Rarely going out to fall in line with the obvious, that of community and national ways to deal with COVID-19. 

In many ways, isolation is not new to me. As a long term, online-based gig economy worker involved in freelance writing and other things similar to pay the bills, I often work alone. Usually, it's me, a laptop, coffee, and cat by my side left to deal with various deadlines. Excluded from the outside world in par for the cause.

Without question, this beast called ‘lockdown’ has altered society. Whether grocery shopping, going to a GP, exercising, or venturing into nature (a favourite activity of mine), the distancing rules have felt odd for everyone.

Fortunately, during lockdown I haven't had much anxiety or fear. This is likely due to having learned to deal with the various uncertainties I've faced in previous life situations, yet friends and family close to me, in general, have. Situations like the body language of colleagues demonstrated during an online work meeting, where such souls don't know what's happening from one day to the next. The grin-and-bear-it looks on the faces of served as much as server at a local Post Office near to home. The stresses on a friend's daughter who has located to a new city for a new job where that job no longer exists one week later in the early days of lockdown. 

If there's one thing I've missed in lockdown, it's an ability to travel to wide-open spaces in the middle of nowhere. Unencumbered in my journeys to places where the quiet earth, wind and water meet. Then, following my time there, to re-experience the joy of human contact.

So what am I looking forward to after lockdown ends? Restoration of social balance. The banter between friends as much as strangers sitting across from me. To once again hear their laughter in a public setting. To stand in line for morning coffee like before. To travel to undiscovered points on a map without restrictions in the background. 

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