Amsterdam Corona Dispatches #1

First day Monday : ‘twas like the weekend except was wonderful not having to go to any kids’ activities. So a holiday basically. The night before we probably had wine – can’t remember now. Grand. We were happy and hopeful enough. Intrigued even at how this imposed family time might work out.

St. Patrick’s Day 2016 (in the good old days)

Second day : also St. Patrick’s Day causing a swift move to miserably wandering the three floors of the house lamenting not being in Ireland with our countrymen and women but knowing full well we weren’t actually missing anything as no parades were happening and pubs were closed. Friends there also freaking about school closures. Not helping the mood. How bad can this get!? One hour calls to family members in Ireland. Singing folk songs together along with a few tears happened that night.

Third day : spent about 14 hours on WhatsApp and Facebook with friends here and abroad talking about what the f*ck is going on and how we’re going to survive being with our families ALL DAY LONG. Forgot to mention husband is working from home all week and doesn’t like it. He’s used to working at work and chilling at home so it’s confusing. Cups of ☕️ being made by the new time. We’re still stocked up on Barry’s Tea, thank god. Am also considering returning to Catholicism for some measure of comfort and genuine rather than opportunistic prayer 😇

Fourth day : we have realised the extreme limitations of Dutch bathrooms. We have a bathroom with loo and bidet ( very continental ) and two extra toilet rooms. We’re also a family of six: two adults —one of whom claims to be almost 6ft, two teens —one of whom actually exceeds 6ft and two other kids. Fun. Both toilets are basically 2ftx2ft and it’s practically impossible to sit on them unless you have the door open or squat with your nose shoved right up on it. Two impossible and very unhygienic choices. Don’t ask which we all go for. It varies is all I’ll say.

But since no one wants to use the pretend toilets, we all six try to lay claim to the luxurious bathroom with working radiator which causes a loud, recurring ‘Ah Jesus, it’s locked again!!’. For me, the bathroom is my refuge because it’s the only room in the damn house that has a lock! It still doesn’t stop them from finding me. Just realised I haven’t mentioned actual homeschooling. Till next time…

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