Sparkling Isolation – Days 151 through 247

I’m still here.

At the beginning of the pandemic, I don’t think most of us thought it would last this long – at least the quarantine part. Alas, here we are nine months in and things look like they are just going to keep on keeping on. I started by creating a daily post, then I briefly moved to weekly. Finally, I just gave up since all I was writing was a repetition of “this is Groundhog Day” and “what day is it now?” and “I am on a coronacoaster.”

I decided it was time to brush off my writing skills and start sharing my journeys again. So, today this post marks Sparkling Isolation Days 151 – 247.

247? How in the hell did that happen? That’s over 35 weeks which accounts for 2/3 of a year. Back at the beginning of this situation, I recall feeling very sad for people who had to celebrate quarantine birthdays. My birthday in December seemed like a safe bet for an actual party, maybe at a restaurant.

“Ha ha all over me!” Looks like we may have a year where everyone on the planet gets to have a quarantine birthday, unless something shifts significantly before March 2021. A friend recently joked that the Coronavirus just wants to make sure everyone has the same experience – so we all get to have a quarantine birthday this year.

My last post was on August 18 and so much has happened since then (understatement, right?). For the longest time, I felt like I had nothing new to say here. After all, working from home had become relatively common for most of us by then. Zoom wasn’t a new thing and the endless repetition of “you’re muted” or “please mute yourself” had become all-too-familiar. Days were blurring together and you were either obsessing on the news (particularly the election news) or were doing what I did – totally ignoring headlines and trying to avoid reading anything remotely political.

I can bet most of us have binge watched every season of the “The Great British Baking Show” along with nearly every available title on Netflix, probably on Amazon Prime as well. All of those grand plans to become a great baker, to master a new language, to do daily yoga, to finally learn to play the guitar . . . most of those things have long since fallen by the wayside.

I don’t think I am alone in feeling alternating energies of despair with intense focus on achieving something. I have moved in spurts for the past few months – a few days of staring listlessly at the ceiling and drinking far too much alcohol – followed by periods of intense creativity and focus. All of that, of course, with no clear pattern. I don’t know from moment to moment whether I am going to want to curl up into a fetal position in a dark closet or whether I am going to suddenly feel intensely motivated and creative.

The one constant for me, luckily, has been my focus on my wine certification. Back in March, I finished up my Level 1 in the WSET (Wine and Spirit Education Trust). I passed Level 2 in August and I am now at the end of my Level 3 training with an exam coming up on December 19. This has become my lifeline – something that stimulates me intellectually and spiritually at the same time. The massive amount of wine I have to taste doesn’t hurt, either.

So, as we move into this holiday season, I just wanted to reactivate my writing energy and reach back out to the world. I am still here. All of you are still here. We are all struggling, but I have to have faith that we will pull through – together.

I think it’s time for another taste of wine. If you are so inclined, please share your favorite quarantine cocktail recipes with me here. I would love to branch out from wine into something more festive!

It’s only Quarantine if it comes from the Quarante province of France. Otherwise, it’s just Sparkling Isolation.