Operation Oysterhood: 18 October

OYSTERHOOD is reclusiveness or solitude, or an overwhelming desire to stay at home.

— @HaggardHawks

The global lockdown has caught up with me on the virtual event front. I have been saying no to participating in virtual literary events as an interviewer/interviewee for all these months, but I could not say no to Gigi Fenster and her Fever. The reason is that we live continents apart and there is no way of telling when we will be able to be in the same room to do this in person, and I absolutely loved Gigi’s memoir and do not want to miss any opportunity of talking to her about it. So, please, tune in on Thursday, 22 October, at 8PM South African time (details above). You will be able to hear about this striking – feverishly hot! – book, see what Gigi and I look like without mask, and see who or what else you can spot in the background of our studies while we are talking (I am not sure I can keep all Cats out of the picture …).

Sunday. But the day did not feel like it until I went to visit my love in the late afternoon and we watched a bit of TV, relaxed and had dinner together. His Feline is doing great. Our combined care and love are working.

For the rest of the day, I worked, completing the final touches on two manuscripts that are going to print this week, one I am publishing at Karavan Press and the other I edited for someone – both are great books and I can’t wait for them to reach bookshops. They both have the most amazing covers.

Another very busy week ahead, but I am hoping that it is the last one of such high intensity for the year. I am feeling worn-out and need to slow down.

I have been thinking a lot about what is happening in Europe and how the ‘second wave’ is setting us – globally – back again. I read a wonderful article by Sue de Groot in the Sunday Times today. In it, she compares the lockdown to maternity leave in the most illuminating way. I know that my life is still quite restricted and, even though I am beginning to see people more regularly and to go out and travel, it is definitely nowhere near as social as it had been before the pandemic. But I am also noticing that my safety vigilance is weaker than it was only a few weeks ago and I think this is wrong – it is exactly what contributes to all these ‘second waves’. It’s hard to be strict with oneself, but I have reached another ‘more safety’ resolution and will try to be a lot more careful than I have been in the last while. I know we have to learn to live with the coronavirus, but we can’t do it by relaxing into complacency.

It is time for bed. And hopefully a decent sleep. Good night.

Be kind. Wear a mask. Support local.

“Physical distancing remains one of the key strategies to curb this pandemic.”


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