Things are definitely getting better in Austria. The bright sun of the last few days seems to be confirming the announcement that the rate of newly infected is now down to 2.5 % in the last 4 days. A big improvement from the initial 35% rate a few weeks ago.
The positive news put me in a mood for colour this week and find it sometimes in the most unexpected places.
Shops with less than 400 square meters will also be allowed to open next week as well as parks. I’ve been anxiously waiting for the reopening of our park as going around it everyday was proving a bit boring already and next Tuesday I will finally be able to have a change of scenery when I go nordic walking.
Nature is blooming and the light at the end of the tunnel seems to increase its brightness a little bit everyday. I’m hoping that soon things can get better everywhere.
For now we all have to contribute and continue to follow the rules of social distancing. So this is what I read, watched and listened to this past week.
I had heard good things about Brooklyn and it seems to combine perfectly this week with my colourful mood. I can also recommend Alex and Rebecca Norris Webb’s book “On Street photography and the poetic image ” that I had read before.
In the meantime I continue reading Proust “In search of lost time” that I mentioned in my previous diary. I love his descriptions of the society and life’s simple pleasures. I find It is the perfect read at this time of isolation.
I also watched a few documentaries on Netflix related with creativity and the creative process:
“The Creative Brain” an excellent documentary on which parts of the brain are related to creativity and how we can use it to increase our abilities.
“The Minimalists” which is about people that have decided to change their comfortable, corporate successful lives and learned to live with very little in order to enjoy life more. I thought it was ideal for the situation some of us are going through while this forced exile lasts.
Finally I have been watching a great series that is inspiring me in many ways and that I highly recommend: Abstract – the Art of design is a series that shows the creative process of different artists, in different areas.
One example is the Danish/Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson who is known for his huge sculptures and installations all over the world. He was saying how when he was younger his father, also an artist, told him to doodle on a page. He explained that doodles are of course abstract but then if you have imagination you can recognise forms. In the video he exemplifies how after doodling he could see a cat. Well I decided to try it too and somehow I saw this weird bird with a big beak. But maybe it is only me who sees it. All is subjective.
I also started a new series called Virgin River that I’m enjoying so far about a nurse who moves from LA to a Northern California small town in the middle of nowhere. She has secrets she doesn’t want to reveal at first and so do many of the town’s inhabitants.
Finally on instagram through Magnum photographers I listened to a live talk by British photographer Martin Parr. A great conversation with the bonus that he also took time to answer questions.
Easter Sunday is approaching and this year we all have to adapt to our social distancing circumstances. So no family gatherings this time. We will hide some eggs and other chocolate goodies in the apartment for my daughter to find. I will cook some nice food and we three will try to make the most of it.
I miss Easter in my country, Portugal. It was a time when our family would gather to share the wonderful food my mother cooked and baked for us. A feast, as she always cooked too much. Special was the Easter Sunday lunch with a leg of lamb and roasted potatoes in the oven. Then there were other sweets and cakes but there was something that we always had to have, the “Folar”. We always had the sweet version of this traditional sweet bread with boiled eggs on top which represent rebirth and resurrection.
Here is an article in English that explains about Folares and even has a recipe if you want to try and make one.
We had a special bakery where we would always order one or more for the festivities. The children in the family also always received big chocolate eggs that had surprises inside. It was a time of joy and loud family gatherings when we talked and laughed for hours.
Let’s make the most of this one in spite of all the limitations. Happy Easter everyone!
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