Operation Oysterhood: 17 June

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

— @HaggardHawks

Ambassador Johann Brieger

A few days ago, I got a message that the Austrian Ambassador to South Africa would address Austrians living in the country via Teams this morning. I got the link for the meeting and was very eager to join, hoping that perhaps Austria would be vaccinating her citizens living in foreign countries (apparently some other countries are doing it).

No matter what I tried, the bloody Teams would simply not allow me to join. IT Krystian to the rescue! He joined the meeting in Austria and streamed it live for me via our Skype connection. Probably the most complicated way to join an online meeting, but it worked. I missed only the beginning. Alas, no vaccines for Austrian citizens living abroad unless we return to Austria to get vaccinated there. Back to square one, so basically back to nowhere.

And then, I found out today that a very close relative is an anti-vaxxer. Sigh. I often ask myself how can it be that we are so closely related and sooooo different, but it is what it is. It makes me think of two things: a Polish saying that I roughly translate as ‘families are best in photographs’; and of a fridge magnet on my favourite aunt’s (we are not blood-related) fridge door saying, ‘Friends always welcome, family only by appointment.’

Talking about lovely friends: the lovely Melissa A. Volker delivered a parcel to my door which included a book and four delicious cupcakes to sweeten the last two days of my self-isolation. Still smiling, because of the generous, kind gesture and the two cupcakes already happily settled in my tummy.

Otherwise a long day of mostly computer work, although I did go through the paper proofs of the amazing The Skipper’s Daughter. To see this story come alive like this in book form is simply wonderful. I still remember the first time Nancy and I had a Skype meeting about it about a year ago and the book had been only a thirty-year-old dream. And now, here it is, bright-new reality.

The Skipper’s Daughter and the author of the book, the skipper’s granddaughter Nancy

Monique Cleghorn designed the book. We will be doing another very special one together soon. Also a story that has been waiting a long time to be told, a horrifying story, but luckily with the most empowering, inspiring ending that will offer hope and solace to many women.

Be kind. Wear a mask. Support local.

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


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