Today I went on a photo walk. Since walking far is now out of the question if you want to be consistently socially distanced it makes sense to go out with a different purpose. When the purpose of the walk is to take photos you can afford to walk up a hill, or between two people to avoid being too close.
When I passed by the barn where cats love to spend time I found at least two of them having their afternoon siesta. Sometimes at this barn you can find quite a few of them.
Motorway traffic was quite dense today. People were apparently choosing to drive from one point to another. We will see what the impact of this public holiday will be on the number of new cases one to two weeks from now.
This weekend plenty of people were walking along agricultural roads and as you can see they’re walking two to three abreast. These are single lane agricultural roads so if I had been walking along these roads I would have come within two meters of many people.
I really wish that during the pandemic people would have the same decency as hikers on narrow paths. That decency is to walk in single file, and to allow people enough space to pass safely. I look forward to when I can walk my ordinary paths, without worrying about passing too close to people.
Aside from having the pandemic as a reason to avoid large groups such as in the picture above I think another motivation is to avoid the feeling of loneliness that some of us could feel. Tomorrow will be week six without human contact for many of us. No hand shakes, no conversation closer than a meter and a half. No break from the solitude of a pandemic.
Solitude is when you’re alone living as usual. lonely is when you’re reminded of what you’re missing and you pine for something that you may not really need. When the order is to stay two or more meters away from people for one and a half months seeing other people with the company of another person is already sub-optimal. Imagine seeing a crowd of up to five people.
I started compiling a collection of hiking documentaries on Youtube. One of them is a hike from Switzerland to the mediterranean and the others are hikes in the United States. It may seem paradoxical that after so much walking I would be thinking of walking even more but I love the idea of walking for a few days and seeing different places. I like the idea of leaving civilisation for a while.
There’s a good chance that rock climbing, via ferrata and other sports will not be possible for at least a few weeks so it makes sense to think about things we can do alone or in small groups. Maybe this will be the year when I do at least one variant of the Via Alpina. We will see, once the pandemic has run its course.