21:16

A show that I have been enjoying pre-lock down and also during lock down is Terrace House. I normally really dislike reality shows! Reality shows in the UK and US tend to be overdramatic, and scripted to make for good viewing. Terrace House may not be 100% ‘natural events’ but the relaxed nature of the show is refreshing. I read reviews of the Japanese show saying that ‘almost nothing’ happens but the build up is worth it. In comparison with other reality shows, yes Terrace House is slow and boring, however I find myself connecting with the individuals more through the mundanity of their everyday lives.

Pre-lock down I binged through all the newer series of Terrace House on Netflix. I was drawn into the friendships and relationships that developed over time, and also the goals that the housemates aim to achieve. Last week I started the original Terrace House series: Boys x Girls Next Door. It was strange to see the show start off so small and relatively unknown, and to compare it to how much it has developed and become a worldwide phenomenon. It is also interesting to learn more about Japanese culture and the way certain behaviours are analysed by the panelists. At around 25 minutes long, each episode is easy to get into and they often end in cliff-hanger moments for suspense.

For anyone looking for a relaxed yet entertaining show to start in this quarantine time I would strongly recommend Terrace House! Yes, the show is a slow burner and often situations are unresolved, but that is what makes the show so compelling to watch! A break away from the over-the-top American or British dramas/series, and a nice delve into Japanese daily life with likeable characters to root for.

20:58

On Friday I went on my daily walk/run and ended up close to my friend’s flat. I messaged her to look outside and we had a short conversation through the window. My friend lives on the first floor so it was quite difficult to shout up/down to each other. My friend decided to come down to speak to me so we stood 2 metres apart in the street and had a 20 minute conversation. It was the first time we’ve seen each other in over 6 weeks! It’s strange to think that this is the norm if people want to catch up in person, and I have seen plenty of others doing the same.

Previously we would have gone to a cafe, or up to her flat, or even just sat in my car or in the park to catch up. The physical distance of our daily lives has been changed so vastly that it seems almost impossible to return to. Will working from home become the norm for most employees? Will supermarkets disinfect their trolleys and baskets more regularly? Will face masks be a part of every day life?

I am currently still riding the wave of furlough and taking each day as it comes. The extension of the government’s Job Retention Scheme is now till the end of June. While 80% pay is not the most ideal situation, I know that there are many who face far worse such as unemployment or inability to pay rent. Everyone is doing their best in light of this strange situation. Will our lives ever return to ‘normal’?

22:29

In recent weeks I have noticed how quickly the days are going by. In my regular work week schedule I find myself baffled at the arrival of another Friday in seemingly quick successions. I don’t know fully if it’s because I’ve been busier in 2018 or if I’m making the most out of my time, or a mix of the two.

As we draw closer to the middle of February I can safely say that 2018 has been good to me. I go to bed each night with a tiredness in my body that signifies I worked and played hard, and also with a content feeling in my heart. I am so thankful for this year already and I strive to have this heart of thanksgiving for the rest of the year.

22:25

Just checking in for a quick life update:

  • I’ve been given more responsibilities at work so things are hectic now and again, but I am happy for a change in pace and for more challenging tasks.
  • Swimming has become something I really enjoy and it helps me unwind. This week I went swimming after work on 4/5 days and my body is feeling great!
  • Catch ups with friends (even if for only a short while) build back those happy feelings in my heart. Forever blessed to be surrounded by lovely, supportive people.

 

22:09

After a little break away in the sun; I have returned to normality and my usual routine. While being on holiday is normally a time to rest and relax, I have found that my body has not recharged itself until I got back into my routine. The excitement of being on holiday and exploring a new country takes its toll. I found myself getting stressed with planning both before and during the holiday, and ended up waking a lot earlier than planned every day I was away. Amidst long days out and coupled with broken sleep I was left exhausted by the time I hopped on the plane home. Not long after take off I completely knocked out and fell asleep!

After being back to work for a week my body has finally gotten back into my usual sleeping routine. I have managed to get back into swimming after a little hiatus, and also changed my eating habits back from the late Spanish meal times. Change is good every now and again but it is always comforting to come back to a ‘normal’ lifestyle.

23:08

A brand new year has begun! Happy (belated) new year!

Now that a new year is upon us it is often the time where people make resolutions and changes in their life. I am not one of those people. While a new year is frequently considered as the perfect time to adopt a new lifestyle, I have never sought after change in this time period.

Change is not limited to time constraints. Embracing a new diet or work out is not restricted to the beginning of the year. Adopting a new way of life does not have to come about just because the previous year is over. Change can come about at any time of the year. You can wake up one day and want to be a whole different person. You can change yourself in an innumerable amount of ways at any given time. A resolution can arise from a change in thought, and it can be kept for weeks, months, years or not at all.

Change is what you make of it.

22:36

‘People don’t want things to make sense. Know why? Because if they did we’d all be in trouble. You drive too fast down the street because it feels good or you’re in a hurry. If things made sense, a cop would stop you every single time and give you a ticket. But what happens when a cop *does* stop you? You get angry and say that’s not fair! But sure it’s fair. It also makes sense. If life made sense we’d either behave ourselves a hell of a lot better or be walking around scared, waiting for the punishment due us for all the bad things we do every day. We want life to make sense only when it’s to our advantage. Otherwise, it’s interesting not knowing what’s coming next. Maybe you’ll get heads, maybe tails. People do wrong things all the time and get away with it. Good people get their neck broken. Would you prefer it if only the good people got rewarded? How often are you good? How often do you deserve the good *you* get? Wouldn’t you rather have an interesting life than a fair one?’

Jonathan Carroll

01:52

‘Sometimes the changes are good. Sometimes you think they’re good and you end up disappointed. Other times you think life has handed you a lemon and it turns out to be a diamond. And there are other times when it just is what it is. It’s not what you wanted, but there’s nothing you can do about it, so you just accept what’s happened and go on.’

Melodie Ramone – After Forever Ends