Nothing can ever happen twice. In consequence, the sorry fact is that we arrive here improvised and leave without the chance to practice.
Wisława Szymborska (Translation by Stanislaw Baranczak and Clare Cavanagh)
Everyone is in a totally new and unknown situation. We are accompanied by stress and a fear of tomorrow, we do not know our future or what awaits us. We are all in it. Citizens of the entire world – each country carries an equal burden.
Time to slow down
This is not the time for an examination of our consciences, pointing out each other’s mistakes and striving for perfection (in any aspect). This is a time of acceptance, closeness and looking at the quality of our relations. This is a time of trial. We have been given the chance to stop for a while, re-evaluate what is most important, and look at our own priorities. This is a time of being good, a time of emotional sensitivity and empathy. A time to look at our neighbours and friends, and help those who are doing worse than us. A time of mutual support and deep reflection.
Abandon fashion in favour of comfort
Although beauty and aesthetics do make life more pleasant, and a good style should be accompanying men every day, today we should turn our sphere of life into something other than clothes. In this time you don’t have to wear a suit, an elegant shirt and a pocket square. Let them wait for better times.
A stylish man today is a partner, father, friend and neighbour you can rely on. He is a guy who notices the needs of others and reaches out to them, yet also remembers about himself.
What to do?
Locked in our homes, we find different ways to spend our time. Undoubtedly, many people have found the chance to discover or dig out forgotten passions and talents. Nevertheless, sometimes you certainly get bored or tired of the everyday routine, which is why today I will present in a nutshell some constructive, creative and ingenious ways to deal with the boredom.
Making friends with culture
We usually lack time for concerts, performances, exhibitions or visits to museums. Now we have a great opportunity to do just that, because the world of culture has reached out to people and knocked on the door.
We can brush the dust from all the books that have been waiting months for our free time, or take part in one of the many online literary meetings initiated by the writers and journalists from the Literary Union. Empik stores have provided more than 11 thousand audiobooks and e-books free of charge, and have enabled listening to radio plays and podcasts via its application. In addition, it regularly organises online author meetings, and conducts a series of online workshops for children.
We have the opportunity to listen to good music – the musicians “peer” into our homes and share their talent. We have a unique chance to visit the Cathedral of the Nativity of Saint Mary in Milan. It is there that Andrea Bocelli gave a moving Easter performance. Now we can look at the cathedral’s unique floor, which usually disappears under visitors’ shoes. The actors who cannot yet stand upon the stage, have recorded optimistic musical surprises in their homes to raise the audience’s spirits. Such songs have been recorded by the artists from the theatres Studio Buffo and Ateneum.
Theatres all over Poland also make our time more enjoyable, giving us the opportunity to watch great online shows from our own couch: the National Theatre, Krzysztof Warlikowski’s New Theatre, the Jewish Theatre, the Contemporary Theatre in Szczecin, Studio Theatre, and many many more. The Grand Theatre – the National Opera, also keeps pace with them, tempting us with great shows on the VOD platform.
The museums don’t lag behind either – there are many exhibitions that we can get to know online. The Wawel Royal Castle attracts its visitors with virtual tours narrated by Anna Dymna, Jerzy Stuhr, Dorota Segda and Jan Nowicki. With a series of educational videos (przez dziurkę od klucza) presented three times a week, the Wawel Castle in Krakow undiscovers its secrets, showing us around the famous nooks and crannies, and also around those that have not been available to visitors so far.
In a word, culture as we know it has never been so close, in our own slippers and within reach. Catching up with the cultural backlog, we can relax, laugh, or immerse ourselves in reverie. There is a little something for everyone. It’s worth using this opportunity!
What you give is what you get
Many beautiful initiatives have also been created. You can offer yourself – your time, energy and commitment to help others. How to do that? There are many possibilities! University students are helping children with their studies by offering free tutoring. Dressmakers and sewing machineowners throughout Poland are sewing face masks for doctors. Printing companies are making visors for hospitals on 3D printers. Neighbours offer help in shopping for the elderly. Volunteers are looking for those in strict quarantine and taking their dogs out for walks.
Find an area in which you can fulfil yourself and which you identify yourself with, and support others. This is a way to make this strange world a little bit more friendly. It’s also a proven way to improve your mood.
In your busy life you often lack the time to clean the corners and spaces of your homes, and to put your values and beliefs in order. Therefore, you can use this quarantine to systematise what you have put aside. Take a look at the dustiest corners of your home. Think about your goals and desires – maybe you want to go in a new direction? Organise the previously unreleased pictures from all your trips.
While the world is standing on its head and nothing is as it used to be, you can convert this time into something good for yourself and your loved ones. Use the time wisely and squeeze as much juice out of it as possible – dealing with those spheres of your life you have been neglecting because of the prose of life.
Take care of yourselves and stay safe!