The last post for 2020

2020. What a year. So much has happened…so much also …didn’t happen. So this is going to be a bit of reflection of what happened in 2020 to me. The good. The bad. The sad. The happy. The whatever.

  1. Feb 2020: I finally fulfilled my dream of travelling to New Zealand for a trip! It was an awesome trip in which I caught up with my good friend living in Brisbane…we did a lot of hiking, horse riding, running, and also went on a boat trip! New Zealand is such a beautiful place and I would highly recommend it. I am also extremely lucky that I was able to go overseas before the borders to Australia has closed.
  2. March 2020: I finally saw my ALL time favourite band, ONE OK ROCK. Having missed out on seeing them when I was in Japan for exchange, I can finally say I have been to my second J-Rock concert. However, this time I actually knew and could sing a long with their songs! I also paid for the VIP tickets and also got to meet them, exchange a few words, and get my photo with them. The night was surreal and it was a great memory I will treasure for many years to come.
  3. Later in March 2020: The lockdown of Australia began as the Coronavirus made it way uninvited into all of our lives. You couldn’t escape it. No matter how hard you try to close your eyes….everyone was talking about it, the supermarket shelves were bare with no toilet paper or hand sanitiser to be seen. Gyms, pools, indoor/outdoor sports, cinemas, schools, universities, and shops, restaurants were closed for dine in. Social distancing was the new norm, everyday we were wiping all the surfaces we touched…everyday I would follow religiously the numbers, the tallies, the hotspots…what rules were changing…The hardest part of all was not being able to see my family and friends…I wasn’t able to see my nephew for the longest time and I was so worried he would forget who I was… It was also during this time that I began spending a lot more time with my family that still lived at home. Yes, we got on each others nerves at some stage…but because there was no where to go and nothing to do, we were just at home. My mum began planting and gardening more and more flowers, fruits, and vegetables…I began learning how to work out at home…For my brother and dad, nothing changed much for them…They usually just stay at home anyways. Skype calls were the best, and I am so grateful for technology that keeps us together, but nothing beats the ability to spend time in person with people.
  4. June 2020. The rules has started to relax in South Austraila. We were finally allowed to have up to 10 visitors in our homes! That meant we were able to gather as a family again and to eat out in restaurants with friends! This was the 1st birthday of my nephew…unfortunately because of the restrictions, my sister only invited the immediate family to celebrate….then they broadcasted it live to their other friends via zoom. My little nephew was sooo spoilt with soo many gifts from family and friends! He got Gucci branded shoes, a small ride on Mercedes, and sooo many toys. June was also the month that I found out that my full-time contract job was not going to be renewed…It was not entirely unexpected, but still a shock to hear it. It meant I had to job hunt all over again…and during a pandemic, that was depressing and a very stressful time…there was not much up for grabs in Adelaide in terms of Hospital Pharmacist positions, so I widened my applications to interstate hospitals. I had 3 sets of interviews for a position in Melbourne and that how I ended up where I am now!
  5. July 2020: I found out that I got the job in Melbourne and I would have to start planning my move…Where was I going to stay? Can I even go there during the pandemic? My aunty and uncle helped me immensely in looking for suitable places that I would inspect when I got there. I also had friends help me plan the trip to Melbourne and what I needed to do to make sure my car was okay. Then there was catchup after catchup with all the people I would be seeing for who knows how long? It was more like a one way trip at this stage…once I went to Melbourne, Adelaide would close it’s borders to me…they would see me as an outsider…I wasn’t sure when I would be able to see my family again…This was a really sad realisation and something that made me so anxious and sad. I would be heading to the city which was undergoing the second wave of Coronavirus…and was in stage 4 lockdown, a curfew, and mandatory masks everywhere. I was going into a virus striken city and working in one of their hospitals that have Covid- positive patients…as someone who hates germs, it was a big risk. Saying good bye to my family was the hardest thing, especially my sister whom I am closest with…I hadn’t cried at all at any of my other farewells, but saying goodbye to my sister for the last time was so hard.
  6. August 2020: I made the long ass drive with my car full of lugguage, toilet paper, and stuff to Melbourne. I was not welcomed with any police or officers at the borders, but it wasn’t the same the other way round. South Australia was quite strict with who was able to enter their state…Melbourne however, didn’t give a hoot and still doesn’t. After staying with my aunt for a few days, I found a place pretty quick and moved in on the same week. Then began the journey of living solo and managing to not live in a pigsty. I had to figure out what I needed and what I wanted…money didn’t grow on trees unfortunately… Then I started working at my new job and that was incredibly tough at first because of all the competency standards that I had to meet to prove I was worthy as a pharmacist.
  7. August-October: So basically nothing happened. I may have took Gamsat…but other than that I rarely went out. I think the lockdown was still ongoing, so there was no house visitors allowed and everything was Click and Collect or buy online. I think I did a lot of cooking…and buying stuff for my house. The video calls with my family and friends in Adelaide continued…We did group chats, group games, and I played ‘Amongst Us’ Once… lol…. I also did a seminar entirely online at home for work…that was interesting, but also made me extremely sleepy.
  8. Nov 2020: Somehow we managed to have 60 days free from Community Transmitted Covid- Cases! The city slowly opened up and restrictions eased in a gradual step by step process. Restaurants were finally open for dine in, but for limited numbers…Retail shops were allowed to open again! Gyms, schools, universities…and most importantly BADMINTON RESTARTED!!!! This is what I missed most (Asides from family and friends in Adelaide)!! Was the desire to hit a shuttlecock! I write this as my whole body hurts from a great baddy session yesterday night….
  9. Dec 2020: My sister messaged me and told she was coming to Melbourne and that we should catchup !! I was so excited!! I wasn’t sure if I was able to go back to Adelaide as they have stricter border than Melbourne, but if my sister could come and go back, surely I would be able to? In the heat of the moment I quickly looked up how much flights would be to Adelaide and back…and it was pretty reasonable! Then I remembered I have a whole bunch of Frequent Flyer Points which I was hoping to use to go to England (dreams crushed this year) and I used those points to pay for the return fare in its entirety! It also included checked baggage both ways! BONUS! I was so happy that I was able to come back home to Adelaide and spend Christmas with my family and to see some of my friends! It was a rushed 4 days…as I hadn’t booked any extra leave I was only there over the public holiday and weekend. Adelaide itself hadn’t changed much, but the people had changed…a bit. Since I left, a friend had a baby, another friend told me she is moving to Brisbane for a new job, two friends had broken up with the long-term partners, and I think that is it?
  10. Dec 31st 2020: The last day of the year 2020, I slept in! Because…I can :)! I had a day off today! It was an accrued day off that just happened to land on the last day of the year. Lucky me! I met up with my sister and her family for lunch and did a bit of window shopping in Melbourne city. A friend told me about a special Free parking voucher that could be displayed to park for free in Melbourne city…Then I came home, cooked the last meal of 2020, and did my last round of laundry for 2020…had my last shower, called my mum for the lastst time, emptied the trash for the laste time, and now I am typing the blog entry for 2020 on here. So many last times for everything. Oh, did I mention that the annual firework display for NYE has been cancelled for both Mellbourne and Adelaide? The Sydney famous ones are still going ahead, however they will not allow people to watch it from the shore. Also, sadly in the last few days we got a few cases of local transmission and now we have some restrictions reinposed, i.e. maximum 15 people in a house at one time…so the Family New Years Lunch is cancelled for tomorrow sadly…

    Happy New Year everyone! Let’s hope fingers crossed that 2021 will be a better one!! Stay Safe, Wash your hands, stay 1.5 metres a part, and wear your mask!

Covid- experience at the Adelaide Airport

I thought I would write about my unique experience flying on a plane during covid-19. So as expected, facemasks are mandatory inside the Melbourne Airport Terminal and on the flight. The airline I flew with provided free facemasks and single use hand sanitisers before boarding the plane. There was no food that was sold in the flight. They did however give us an individually wrapped slice of cake and a tiny bottle of water each.

We were encouraged to not move around the cabin .. if we needed to use the bathroom, they recommended no more than 2 people to be queuing for the bathroom. The flight was probably around 80% full, they tried to leave the middle seats free between passengers. Lucky for me I had the whole aisle to myself!

It was my first time flying on Christmas day…the staff donned Christmas hats and made jokes about remembering to take off the face masks if we needed the oxygen masks. The flight attendants were also making comments about the number of people who were writing last minute Christmas cards on the plane. I have a feeling many were travelling to visit their family and friends…-I highly doubt the travel was just for leisure…this was shown by the many gifts people carried for their loved ones. My entire suitcase and guitar case was full of stuff to bring back for my family and friends…

Once i touched down to Adelaide… I realises that there was not many people there and that there was a lot more security and police guards around. I do note that some security guards had colourful lights attached to their vests.. LOL… they had serious faces but the lights made them seem..”human”. We had a passage that mean we had to walk single file down to an area where we had to sure officials our permits to enter South Australia and to ensure them we haven’t traveled to NSW, Overseas, or been in contact with anyone with Covid-19…. I also showed them my passport as my photo ID…I do note that the staff were not 1.5 metres away from each other, which made me extremely uncomfortable because the passenger next to me was super close… I do also note not all airport staff were wearing facemasks… it feels surreal that we don’t need to wear masks indoors here… surreal!!!

Other than that complaint about the non-socially distancing staff, I was given a ticket which I was to show the staff and police man that I was okay to go. The police man just said “Merry Christmas” and I went on to find my luggage. I do much prefer SA police than Vic police.. all my encounters with Vic Police have been unpleasant so far…

I finally found my guitar case I had checked in as oversize baggage and headed out of the terminal. I noticed that flights from Sydney to Adelaide were still happening, however those passengers would need to complete mandatory quarantine for 14 days and get swabbed 3 times during those 14 days. I saw some people in full body PPE conducting swabs of return passengers… not sure if Sydney or overseas passengers ….

Merry Christmas

I am at Melbourne airport at time of posting this. It is a lot quieter here than I have experienced previously.

The effects of covid are both positive and negative..: negative because by travelling you are taking a major risk that you could be stuck somewhere in quarantine. I am reminded of this because I can see all flights to Sydney have been canceled. This is due to all the others states in Australia shutting the borders to Sydney in response to the recent outbreak that was discovered in the Northern beaches. In order to travel interstate for me , I’ve had to apply for a permit to enter South Australia and also a permit to re enter Victoria when I come back.

It’s been so long since I’ve been at the Melbourne airport.. the last time I was here was when I had to transit there after coming back from my New Zealand trip.

The airport in Melbourne is super far away for me! Around an hour drive.. that’s even longer than the flight from Melbourne to Adelaide. LOL.

Well, time to do pre-flight stuffs.. toilet.. fill up bottle.. chill.

Have a Merry Christmas everyone 😍

Not all heroes wear capes..some are Masks

I have spent the last few days continuing to pack a little by little… some sports tops, some socks, some undergarments…and yeah the rest I might still have to use…

One thing my relatives in Melbourne have been harping on about is FACE MASKS!!!! It is now mandatory for everyone in Melbourne to wear a facemask when they go out. So, of course, there is a mask shortage in Melbourne now… Workers in hospitals, I believe also need to wear facemasks when talking to patients.

The power of facemasks to prevent community transmission of Covid-19 has been proven and effective. This small piece of cloth is able to lessen the possibility of the spread of the virus. Who knew that the humble facemask would be so widely used outside the hospital.

My mother for some reason had bought a whole of reusable cloth masks from China to use when my parents are delivering papers…who knew they would become so useful now! Wearing the resuable mask is a lot more comfortable than the surgical masks, however, whether or not they work as well is pretty questionable…

The last week begins…

One week left in Adelaide.

Hmm. Times flies when you realise it is finite and not unlimited.

I had an adventurous week and I did a lot of things within then I normally would.

Caught up with old work colleagues, family, lots of badminton, gym…and even traveled to a few places I haven’t been before! I went to a small rural town about 2.5 hours drive away from Adelaide, called Port-Pirie. As I have a friend that is a pilot, we hired a small aircraft and flew there…I have never been in a small aircraft before and it was definitely a really exciting experience. I was so surprised that the landings and take offs were so much smoother and faster than I expected!

The view from up in the sky is amazing and despite having an awesome new phone camera, it doesn’t seem to do it justice. Somethings in life you just have to experience it first-hand yourself! We flew over the famous Pink Salt Lake, which kinda looked more brown than pink to me.. (It was my first time to see it)…

We had about 2.6 hours in the air…I even got to fly for a bit…While exciting at first..it is a bit more tiring than steering a car. Once we landed in Port-Pirie, we booked a cab to take us to town and we enjoyed some lunch at a place called Safavia . This is where we both tried something called a ‘Chicken Stack’…which is basically chicken with a quiche and some bacon stacked on top of it.

Post lunch we had a bit of a walk around town…there wasn’t a whole lot to do…but thee was a small museum, which looked deserted. We also walked passed a real estate sop and boy is it it a cheap!! You can get a 3 bedroom house with lots of land for well under 100,000k! To put that into perspective, a house of that size would easily be 6 or 7 times that amount in Metropolitan Adelaide.

We then walked around the railway and to a small jetty, took some photos…then it was time to head back to the aircraft in the cab.

I flew some more on the way back. It was a good experience.

Yesterday, I caught up with some old work mates in a place called Plant 4 Bowden- which as its name suggests, has many plants for sale…It also had many cool looking shops and little eateries. I wish I had discovered this little gem earlier! I have been living in Adelaide for so long, yet I have never been.

It’s funny how you only finally start to explore and enjoy somewhere when you know you are leaving.

 

Will I miss Adelaide?

I have been thinking lately…this might be the last time I go here, do this, see this person. Is the only way I will miss Adelaide is by leaving?

I took a good long look at my backyard and I remembered all the memories that I have had in my childhood…it feels really surreal that I am leaving soon.

I will miss playing badminton with my friends for sure. I am scared and afraid of trying to make new friends in a new city :(.

I am going to have to learn how to cook for myself. Eek…I hope that I won’t starve…

I am going to miss eating out in Adelaide, especially eating out..gymming…since Melbourne is locked down at the moment due to Covid.

I am big big girl in a big big world

There was this song that my sister and I liked when we were younger called “I am a big big girl in a big big world”...and that’s how I am feeling right now.

I am just staring at the word BIG and it looks so weird. lol.

I just got a call from the interstate job I had an interview and I got told that they would like to offer the position to me- as long as I pass my police clearance and working with children checks etc.. !!

Exciting news…It hasn’t even sunk in yet and I am already stressing about how I am going to move myself and all my shit down to Melbourne…

Speaking of Melbourne, it is currently the Covid-19 hotspot in Australia…it seems like we have a smaller but surely a second surge of cases in Melbourne. There are currently some areas in which there are higher numbers of Covid Cases in Melbourne that are under lockdown, while the rest are free to roam with restrictions.

Adelaide, however is back to normal ..almost. There are still some restrictions, but at least most things are open already.

There are so many things to think about in the move..where will I stay, how will I get there, should I bring my car? WHERE WILL I PLAY BADMINTON?!

But anyway, I will worry about that more tomorrow.

Home style Pumpkin Soup

Ever since I was little, I’ve been addicted to pumpkin soup and I am not even sure why. Might be the salt in it…for some reason I am addicted to salty foods! At work, my colleague and I have a soup each day, with the exception of one day last week in which our kettle stopped working and also took half the pharmacy’s electricity along with it.

I’ve always just loved pumkin soup and whenever it was on sale and when it wasn’t-( esp during the Covid-19 stockpiling saga) I would always have enough soup on hand in my locker at work and in the kitchen in my corner to last me for days. I’ve tried other flavours of soup, but nothing really tasted as good as I thought pumpkin soup tasted. I tried chicken noodle curry, mush room, ham and pea, I just didn’t like the artificial taste in these other flavours. That’s until one day I swapped a pumpkin for my colleague’s DUTCH CURRY. Now every time I have an instant pumkin soup, I am craving a Dutch Curry. I am not sure how to describe a Dutch curry and I’ve never tried the real thing, but it really hits the spot you know?! It’s a little spicy, but not too spicy..and it has rice and peas in it! Just enough to allow me to last till lunch time. It’s super cold in Adelaide these days… hot soup is the best!

Suddenly I am no longer buying my pumpkin soup, but Dutch Curry.

I have changed so much this year. What’s happening to me?!!?

Positive Points of the Pandemic

How are you guys? I hope you are doing well? Wherever in the world, you may be at the moment. I was really surprised after posting the previous post about things to do in the Pandemic at home…I had a 4000% increase in viewers of my website o.O!? And the majority of them were from America!! That’s amazing that this humble little blog from a small city in Australia has been visited by so many International guests from around the world. Anyways, I understand now is a time where it can be hard to remember to be grateful for the small things that we still have. I am not trying to say that I am glad this pandemic happened, but I want to point out the things we have learnt and the unusual positive consequences that have arisen from it. If I don’t laugh in the face of adversity, I will cry…so why not laugh?

 

  • I have never seen petrol prices so low as it is now!! In my 29 years of life,…I have neverrr seen it so low! the lowest I have seen it around is 80 cents per litre! That’s supppper cheap… The average cost is usually around $1.30 per litre for Unleaded 91 petrol.
  • I have saved money on petrol not only because it is cheap, but also due to the social distancing restrictions, I have literally nowhere to go after work -except back home! No more driving to badminton or to the gym…or to visit my sister..or shopping etc. So one tank of fuel lasts for a loonnnggg time. Due to people using less petrol for their cars and fewer flights, I guess that’s good for the environment…!
  • I have saved money because I can’t fly anywhere…so even though I have the travel bug, there is a reason why I shouldn’t/can’t fly at the moment. I am super grateful I was still able to go on my trip and come back safely from New Zealand before all the travel restrictions and quarantine rules kicked in Australia. Super super grateful!
  • I have a legit excuse to skip the gym after work … xD I am usually pretty hard on myself and force myself to go, whether I feel like it or not! But, now with the gym closed, I am forced instead to take walks during lunch or after work and enjoy nature. I am finding out all sorts of cute and quirky things in my neighbourhood.
  • As a pharmacist, I always felt like our profession was always undervalued,
    forgotten, and underutilised. Through this pandemic, there have been so many changes to the rules that have allowed pharmacists more authority than ever before to exercise their clinical expertise more than any other time before. It is also highly recognised that pharmacists who are administering influenza vaccines to the public are helping to decrease the burden on the already overflowing GP clinics. We have also been given the (temporarily) authority to change strengths and forms of prescription items so that supply can be given to the patient without prior approval by the GP. Emergency supplies of medication to people who can’t get into their GP have also been approved in certain circumstances.

 

  • Random Strangers have been more friendly and strike up conversations. I remember when I first heard of the toilet paper shortage, I went to the grocery store and bought two small packs. The random stranger next to me asked me why was everyone buying toilet paper… I said, “I don’t know, but I am just going to buy some in case!”.

 

  •  I have never appreciated the supermarket workers as much as I do now and also never felt appreciated as much as now…With their friendly smiles and small talk, it is pleasant to make small talk with them. In particular, the supermarket near my hospital has been giving away free soup to the hospital, police, and emergency workers. I later went to purchase some items after work and told the checkout assistant that I loved the free soup I got today and she said she was extremely grateful for the hard work that we do. I said, “I appreciate you guys immensely too!”. Because I do, without those workers going in every day to fill the stock, we would have no food to eat! In addition, today, I called Medicare to ask about concession and safety net entitlement cards for a patient and the man I spoke to said, “Stay Safe!” at the end of the conversation…I know these are small things and they are from people I don’t know, it just feels nice to know that people do care about each other. I know these are really small things, but they really do…

 

  • Being grateful for a normal life. After this pandemic, I will always remember how good it will be to meet friends, to go to the gym, to play badminton… to attend concerts, do exams, fly overseas…All of these things that I have taken for granted for so many years… I will be super grateful to be able to do all those things again! #grateful

 

  • EVERYTHING IS SOOOO CLEANNNNNN! I love it. We’ve never been as aware of cleanliness till now. Maybe it is just me, (as you can see in my post about being a germaphobe), but I am glad there is hand sanitiser everywhere and supermarkets having gloves for us to use! I like the idea of having personal space of 1.5 metres between everyone…coz even before I hate hearing people breathe loudly near me or get into my special personal space …xD … My dad is guilty of not washing his hands after going to the toilet, thanks to this pandemic I have stressed the importance of washing your hands for at least 20 seconds and using soup! If you haven’t already seen it, you should the video on how to handwash -the proper way by WHO.

 

  • I’ll put the video link here:

 

Stay safe and wash your hands (properly)!!

Things to do at home during a Pandemic

During this time where most of us are being encouraged to stay at home to ‘Flatten The Curve’ and to minimise the spread of Covid 19 by social distancing…it is easy to become bored. With all the chaos going around the streets…now is a great time to have a think of embarking on some home projects and rekindling some past hobbies…and this post highlights what I know people around me are doing.

It is not so bad for me because I am still working 6 days a week…so honestly life hasn’t changed much for me…except I don’t have any social activities or group exercise planned… 😦 I have been trying my best to go for a short walk around the hospital in my lunch break to get some sun and to get away from the workplace…I am quite lucky that I work in a job where I am constantly on the go and get enough steps in a day.

I miss talking and seeing my friends… so I messaged in my group chat and organised a virtual catch up with my university friends! While there was some people that ignored/forgot my invite to the conversation, I think it was quite successful getting about 6 of 9 people in a chat at once! Because we are all supposed to stay home anyways, they really do not have much excuse for not participating :P. As my sister and her family are also in self-isolation after their trip, I have been regularly video-calling them as well. I am not sure if we are allowed to visit them post isolation, unless to drop some food or supplies (which we have been doing). As most of my friends have FB messenger, that is what I’ve used to communicate with others…but I have heard Zoom is popular, Skype, or even Watsapp.

My mother an extroverted socialite and the self-imposed social isolation that she has undertaken has taken it’s toll on her and the rest of the family face the consequence of it…I keep telling her it’s still okay to get exercise and to go shopping (if you need it!!)…I think it makes you a bit crazy and forgetful when you stay at home all the time…it’s not healthy :(..I am lucky to be isolated with my family at home, but I know a few people at work who live on their own and it can be quite lonely not being able to visit friends or invite them over…unless you risk getting a fine from the police. To combat her boredom, my mum has been gardening almost all day and everyday. She’s planted new plants and flowers and have been taking care of them like her little children! She is also growing vegetables for our own consumption which is great! It might be worth learning to grow your own vegetable and fruits and further avoid the mass queues at supermarkets.

My brother has always been a socially distant person and rarely leaves his room to do anything except eat, shower and shit. So this pandemic hasn’t affected him at all. I guess if you are a gamer, this is your ideal life style?! Thanks to the internet you can entertain yourself with paid streaming websites like Netflix, Stan, etc…or for stingy people like myself, youtube is good enough XD.

My sister has been picking up her practice of lettering (or is it calligraphy) and water colouring again. Since you are going to be indoors all day, everyday day…,might as well make use of those art and craft things that you have, but rarely ‘find’ time to use and do. You can post your work on your facebook or instagram pages to show your work to others or ask for feedback. Isn’t it awesome that the internet keeps us together during this time?

Back to me again, asides from work…I try to minimise the amount of times I go to the grocery store, but if I do, I check in with my elderly aunty and uncle (who have been recommended by our Prime Minister to stay indoors and self-isolate for their own protection) to see what they may need. Helping others get their crucial supplies is a way to look after those in your community. When I do walks around my neighbour hood, I have been keeping my eye out for any elderly that I can ask to see if they need toilet paper/groceries…so far I haven’t seen many out (which is far enough-they are supposed to stay in). As I mentioned in my last post, now is the time to really strengthen that community spirit and look out for the more vulnerable people in our society. While I type this, I feel like I am some sort of politician or something…but anyways probably a sign that I’ve been watching the news too much (not good)!.

Lastly, I mentioned before, I have taken up playing the guitar again. For me, playing music allows me to focus on something else and allows me express a part of me that is only through music… even listening to good music is comforting and amazing. On sort of related side note, I just wanted to let you know, I treated myself to Apple Airpods! Since I can’t go to the gym and work outs (if I do them~!!) will be by myself at home…and walks/runs around neighbour hood. I thought it would be much better having wireless earphones! I love them! I have been using them to listen to videos for my studies and its great…kinda like listening to a podcast…Anyways, I promise I don’t work for Apple..I just really like them. The sound quality of music is great too… not that I know much about sound quality…. xD

I hope everyone stays sane during this challenging time!!!!!!!!!!!!

p.s this pandemic has allowed me a bit more extra time to write more posts and update more frequently and do a little bit on my book…..

Enjoy your indoor time~

JL

 

How I became a Germaphobe

Before this pandemic crisis, some people have accused me of being too much of a germaphobe…however, I can remember exactly why I am the way I am based on my experiences…It’s time for a trip down memory lane…..

I still remember when I was around 11 years old, I had just finished borrowing some books from my local library…and I needed to cross the road to get to our car. I pressed the pedestrian crossing button…and when I went home, it was all downhill from there.

When I went home my finger suddenly felt incredibly itchy. I looked at my finger and small yellow pimple-like pus filled bumps appeared on my pinky finger. I had to cover my entire in bandages because the pus kept leaking out…Anyways, I used this as an excuse to not play violin anymore…because whatever that virus or infection was…it stayed there! I contemplate that there may have been a small cut in my finger which meant that whatever germs was on that pedestrian button must have gone in. Needless to say, I did my best to not touch a pedestrian button from that day.  Strategies to avoid touching it include, waiting for someone else to press it.. there’s plenty of inpatient people around who will press it regardless whether or not someone has done it already :P. I can also use things (that can be easily cleaned later) in my bag to press it, i.e. car/house keys, pens, or umbrellas! This goes the same for elevator buttons and whatever buttons.


 

Fast-forward the future, I was in my third year of pharmacy school and we were doing a microbiology subject in which we investigated the number of bacteria which was on different surfaces. My friend and I both did a swab of our phone screens…A few days later when we came to see our results…My swab came back with bacteria of all colours..it was incredibly gross! However, my friend’s phone only had a few small dots of the same colour. Obviously, there was a massive difference between the two of our phones…I felt incredibly grossed out about the disgustingness of my phone…and this is when I started becoming a little obsessed with having a clean phone, hand, and surfaces if needed. I bought small single use alcohol wipes and put them everywhere, so that I could have clean hands, phones, etc whenever. If no soap in the toilet, no worries I have my alcohol wipes…I found alcohol wipes worked better for me than those small bottles of hand sanitiser because I am quite bad at putting the lid back on properly after using it and it spilt all over my bag… numerous times..

 


Few more years later, I went on a trip to Canada and I had a friend who was even more germaphobe than me! He would always take extra napkins at restaurants and put his phone down on a napkin. I asked him why he did that, and he said… “How do you know that this table is clean? Maybe they haven’t wiped down the table properly..there might be germs on it” and then your phone is DIRTY. MIND BLOWN and from then on, I never put my phone down on any public surface again…even at work I like to put my phone on my book or on a tissue… and I try clean my phone and watch at least once a day when I get home.


 

Using cutlery at restaurants…I never thought about it this way…but I had a friend who would vigoursly wipe spoons and forks at restaurants a clean tissue before use…because who knows how clean they really are… I remember when I was in China as a child to visit relatives, the restaurants provided you with near boiling water so that you would disinfect and wash all the cutlery they provide you. I now try make sure none of my cutlery ever touch the table and I really really get pissed if the waiters just throw your cutlery directly on the table.

 


Once when working in a community pharmacy, there was a little old lady that was on some anti-viral tablets (maybe for herpes() who suddenly leaned across the counter and gave me a huge kiss on my cheek. EWWWW is all I could hear in my head.. When she was gone, I literally put alcohol gel all over my face…who knew what viruses she may be spreading. I have always been super paranoid about getting cold sores, because I don’t have them…IF i share a drink with someone, I have to ask them if they have had coldsores before….because I reallllly don’t want that thanks.

 


Working in the health care made me aware that I could be encountering people with all sorts of diseases and viruses when working in the pharmacy or in the hospital. I have made it a habit to always shower when getting home and washing my hair and getting rid of my work clothes…I try to wear a near set of clothes each day…who knows what germs are harboured on my clothes :O.


The constant cleanliness that I can see in my community makes me extremely happy…I am glad others are thinking about germs now…I hope this stays even post pandemic..

I will show you some photos of places in Adelaide putting into practice social distancing and making sure that sick people don’t infect others.

Every second check out is closed to allow for social distancing in supermarket.

 

 

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This was my badminton club before they closed the gym..making sure that everyone cleans their hands while playing and yes, they are worried about people stealing the hand sanitiser.

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This was outside one of the pharmacies that I went to…They asked people with any signs of symptoms not to enter the pharmacy… Other pharmacies also had signs saying they would close in the middle of the day to clean all the surfaces. There was also hand santiser at the entrance for all customers entering the shop

 

 

This was my coles at 7am when I went there to buy groceries in the early morning which was open just to frontline workers.. Everyone is standing about 1.5 metres apart…for “social distancing”.IMG_2525

Stay safe guys! Hugs and kisses are out~ Foot shakes and waves are in.

Joy

 

 

 

Positivity Needed

Hi everyone,

My sister recently invited me to join this Facebook group: The Kindness Pandemic.  It is basically a group that shares different acts of kindness that they have experienced while the Coronavirus is going around in the world. It is the much-needed positivity that we need at a time where the world as it seems has changed and become a more grey colour.

I also want to shout out to our local grocery chain, ‘Coles’, who have decided to open early on Tuesdays and Thursdays for Health Care workers! I am planning to go in the morning and suss out who the other health care workers around the neighbourhood are and I wonder if there will be a stampede of people waiting outside when it opens? Personally, I am trying to stay at home as much as possible after work. I am trying to limit my weekly visit to the supermarket once a week. Yes, it is a bit boring at times, BUT on the plus side, I am helping to stop the potential spread of the disease.

My mind-shift about this disease has rapidly changed over the last few weeks…I was a sceptic a while ago….when the disease was overseas in China, it felt so far away! People were dying, yes…But it seemed so far. But now, the disease is on shores…It has reached and it has spread as people spread throughout Australia. My parents took quick action, getting as many things they thought they would need if they were self-isolated in the home. I wouldn’t call them ‘hoarders’ as such, but people who are thinking ahead. My parents are well-informed about the situation in China and were around when SARS also happened. They have refrained from going outside unless absolutely necessary and their church was also very proactive in going ‘Online’ with meetings instead of meeting face to face. It is a lot more than the rest of the population who seem to disregard the seriousness of this pandemic.

I used to think, I am young, I can survive this disease…But then, I also have to think, who may I be spreading the disease to? My patients at work? My elderly aunts and uncles? My nephew? My parents? A pregnant lady? Who knows who could get the disease from me and how can I live with the guilt that I may have been responsible for spreading something. While it can be really tempting to make this an “All about me” thing, we have to remember its also all about keeping “them” safe too. Also, as a health care worker…we have to look after our own health so that we can look after others… Please be patient with us as it’s not our fault there are medication shortages due to people stockpiling their medications :(! There is no need to stockpile medications during this time! There won’t be a shortage if everyone just gets their usual supply…

On a side note, I went to post a package today at the post office and I was really pleased that they implemented a 1.5 Metre marked lines on the floor to indicate how far people were to stand from each other! It’s great when businesses implement these ideas to help STOP the spread of the disease. I have also noticed some shopping centres having installed more automatic alcohol gel dispensers…People at KFC drive-through were also wearing gloves and not accepting cash. I hope everyone is able to see the seriousness of this disease and ramp up hygiene measures to minimise the spread! Good job to those people! I believe we can all do our small part.

 

Stay safe and well,

 

Joy

P.S Wash your hands!

person s left fist punching water
Photo by mali maeder on Pexels.com

Update: A New look & CoronaWorries

As you can see, I’ve been playing around with the blog a bit and even made a logo… I’ve paid for an actual website address! So you can now visit the site on www.howtoadultwithjoy.com  !! I hope to do more updates (now that most of outside work activities have been cancelled/postponed) and will and have been working on my book as well (More mentioned later)!

How is everyone doing with the Coronavirus? I’ve been touching base with family and friends all over the world and it seems that it has affected every single person I have spoken to so far…From Japan to Canada, and to Calfornia… The virus has spread all over the world…It is very much here in Australia as well, the number of new cases is rising steadily and in response, our governments have put in tough new measures to curb the virus. As mentioned last time, the social distancing continues to apply and just yesterday night the Prime Minister announced that all pubs, clubs, entertainment venues, gyms, indoor sporting places, and churches will be closed from midday today. This means basically I have no social life…because the only other thing I do besides work and study is exercise at the gym or play badminton. However, I have decided to use the time that I usually spend on exercise to do other things at home…such as working on my blog, planning my future book, and I have started playing the guitar again!! Having experienced ONE OK ROCK live in a concert…I am so motivated to learn and play their songs! It had been over a year since I played the guitar last…and at that time I really wanted to do a cover of the song ‘Yellow’ the Chinese version featured the movie ‘Crazy Rich Asians’.

I hope for everyone else that is in self-isolation (like my sister and her family who have just come home from Japan), will be able to work on those hobbies and things that they have put aside for so long! May you also learn some new skills! I have friends that are doing virtual gym classes online in their rooms and they said they had a good work out! There are many things we can learn and continue to do even at home. I guess now is a good time to be an introvert. :).

I’ve always thought I was an introvert that doesn’t like meeting up with other people and going out…but since these rules have been put into place, I have finally realised how much I miss going out and doing the things I am used to. May we take some time to reflect on where we are and what we hope to learn from this challenging time. I hope everyone can remember to keep in touch with each other and check up on your elderly/vulnerable friends and see if you can help them in any way. We are social distancing and that does not mean being socially isolated!

My thoughts go out to those who have lost their jobs or don’t have work for the next few months…I hope that you will be able to find another job and have adequate support over the next few months. I know my government is increasing the handouts for those who are doing it tough…and have decreased the requirements that are needed to qualify for those programs.

Also, on a side note, thank you for the 50 subscribers and having over 3000 visitors to this website! Thank you so much for visiting, reading, and being a part of this journey to adulthood.

I hope everyone stays safe, coughs into their elbows, and don’t go to work when you are sick!

 

Joy

Adelaide Fringe Show

Last week was a tough week with all sorts of new rules, legislations, and bans happening in Australia… I have been studying for an exam for almost three months and was going to take this exam on the 21st of March…HOWEVER, Mr Corona Virus decided to stop that from happening… 😦 The Prime Minister of Australia, Scott Morrison announced all non-essential meetings of over 500 people would need to be postponed or cancelled. So far, we haven’t received any further information as to when the exam will be. He announced this on Friday the 13th of March that this would take place on the 16th of March.

Anyways…Leading up to the exam, I like to do nothing but the bare minimum of stuff I need to do… Work, Exercise, and STUDY in all my spare moments. So I had no time to check out the Adelaide Fringe Festival (Which usually starts the start of March and Finishes Mid March), which I try to go to at least one event each year. I didn’t think I would make it this year, because…you know prioritising studying for the exam. HOWEVER, we found out on Friday 13th that the exam was cancelled, so I tried asking my friends last minute if they wanted to go to the festival…However, most of them already had other plans or have already been to the shows that I wanted to go to. All good. I will go by myself…with this ban in place, who knows when the next community event will be? Everything is being cancelled or postponed, left, right, centre.

I went to an art exhibition experience called ‘1000 Doors’…which is basically many doors…I don’t think there was 1000…but there was a hella lot of doors. If you think about it, doors are pretty interesting concepts…they hide behind them the unexpected, the unknown, and the secret. In hindsight, given the current situation the world was in, it was probably a mistake for me not to have worn gloves while opening those 1000s of doors… LOL.. anyways.

Prior to entering, they allow a gap between the previous guests and for you. There was only one rule, remember to close the doors and yes we could take photos. I was told that everyone experienced a different wave of familiarity, fear, or sensation in each type of room…I was super hyped and intrigued.  It was a super interesting experience, especially since I went by myself… I went at my own pace…it felt like a maze…and indoor adventure almost. The first door I walked through led me to an alleyway that reminded me so much of an old (and creepy) hospital corridor! Nostalgic. The lighting of each area also suited the different environments that they were trying to portray. Some cosy doors reminded me of my grandparents home in which I used to visit almost every week as a child. Some doors led to small places like a closet or a chimney. Some rooms felt like they were abandoned and made to look like a home for street people. There is one room in which you can only see through a small hole in the wall, lets you see into a super creepy room bathed in red light. Possibly an interrogation room? In some of the rooms, I felt like I was going back into time …one had a super old working radio and one a piano…I have attached some photos in this slide show here, unfortunately, because of the low lighting in some of the rooms and my haste in trying to take photos when no one was in them, led to some photos being too blurry to post :(.

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This is the Dolls House a three-storey recreation of a dolls house created by the Visionary Japanese artist Tatzu Nishi in the middle of Rundle Mall in the city centre of Adelaide. There was a long queue to go into the house and I stood among many young families grandparents, and kids to enter the magical looking building. I am amazed that he was able to build the house so quickly! He has only built something similar only one other time, and that was in Paris in France. Entering the house I didn’t know what to expect! It felt so much like a real house…with some real furniture, real fridges, sinks…yet everything was just so pink and so cute! Everything else was painted on…it really blended the real and the fake and you do feel somewhat like a doll. If someone living in a house that cute and bright, how could you not smile? I guess one downfall is one side of the house is completely made of glass so everyone can see what you are doing. LOL.

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Overall, I enjoyed my small escape from study, work, or exercise. The Prime Minister made another announcement today that because of the Corona Virus meaning that we can’t have gatherings of more than 100 people now… That will really affect big birthday parties…weddings…funerals… However, he says Universities and Schools should still go ahead as usual. He believes it’s better for kids to go to school rather than stay home and be looked after by grandparents who are at more risk of complications if they get the disease. There is also rule that there can’t be any more than two visitors at a time to aged care facility residents…they are also banning any children under 16 years old from going, except for exceptional circumstances. From the 1st of May, only those who have had their Flu Shot will be able to go into aged care facilities. No one who has come back from overseas in the last 14 days is also allowed to go in… All sorts of social gathering and activities have been recommended to be cancelled. Sounds like a really depressing time to live in aged care right now… :(…

In other terms of changes, The Prime Minister has asked ALL Australians to come back to  Australia as soon as possible and recommends no one leave UNLESS they really have to. Anyone who comes back from overseas from ANY country in the last 14 days has to self-isolate themselves for 14 days…failure to do so can be persecuted. I am really lucky that I didn’t have to cancel my trip last month to NZ and also that I don’t have to self-isolate… but unfortunately, my sister and her family are in Japan at the moment and they will be self-isolating for 14 days when they return to Adelaide this Saturday…

What a time to live in. :O

Stay Safe and wash your hands everyone!!

ONE OK ROCK: Eye of The STORM Australian Tour

As not promised, I am posting about the ONE OK ROCK concert in which I attended yesterday night. I haven’t recovered from my ‘high’ yet… The adrenaline drop from all the shouting, moving, singing, phone recording and straining to see (short people problems)…I felt the only way I can stop thinking about the concert as much is to write about it here… Feel free to skip this lengthy fangirl account if it is not your thing ..I won’t be offended…xD

I’ve been a ONE OK ROCK fan for the longest time…probably a little over 10 years. The most memorable song that I heard from them was, ‘The Beginning’ and that song still holds a special place in my heart. During my short stint as a keyboardist for a Jrock cover band (which you can hear about in my podcast..(which I might have to update soon XD), ‘The Beginning’ was one of the songs we covered and my favourite. Unfortunately, when I was in Japan for exchange during uni, they were away touring America so I missed out seeing them in Japan! I hope I will be able to attend one of their concerts in Japan! They look epic. Sorry, I jumped the gun… I forgot to say who ONE OK ROCK is…they are a four-piece Japanese rock band the lead singer, Taka- sings in both Japanese and English. They are currently on a world tour promoting their new album -Eye of the Storm. I believe they are one of the most well-known Japanese rock bands in Japan. I hope that was enough background information for you guys (probably the majority?) who don’t know this band.

I bought my tickets last year in December after I saw an ad for it on Facebook…I was super shocked, grateful, and excited to see that ONE OK ROCK had added Adelaide to one of the places in which they were touring this time round! Last time they came to Australia (Which I found out about too late), they were only in the other major cities..Sydney, Melbourne..Brisbane. I just HAD to get tickets..and also…I wanted to aim for VIP tickets…MEET AND GREET? YES PLSSSS...I put it in my diary to make sure I made myself available to buy the tickets as soon as they came out…a friend also showed me how we can sign up for pre-sale tickets..super glad I did that! I managed to get one of the much-coveted VIP tickets for ONE OK ROCK.

Fast forward a few months and the concert day was here! Unfortunately, I got told two days before the concert that we needed to get there strictly at 5pm (normal admission is at 7pm) in order to have the VIP experience… I hadn’t taken a day off work or anything so I had to ask last-minute ask if I could leave earlier from work…Anyways…by the time I finally got there…there was already a massive line!!  I bumped into a friend and asked if they had VIP tickets as well, they said they had General Tickets but we’re lining up early #dedicated. After some asking around another VIP ticket holder and I was placed in the right area for getting the VIP experience. After much waiting…ticket checking…ID showing and marking off. We were let inside and we all received a wrist band saying ‘ONE OK ROCK’ and a ‘VIP ONE OK ROCK Lanyard’. It was here that I also had to give my gift to the organisers…we were not allowed to give it directly to the band…which makes me wonder if they actually receive the gift at all??? It was anything super expensive, I just got them some South Australia/Australian snacks… and wrote a love letter… LOL..

Anyways…then it was back to more lining up for the photo we get with the band. It was freezing outside! I didn’t bring a jacket…because I know from previous experience when people are in a moshpit..it gets quite hot and I am too lazy to carry it around…In hindsight I should have bought like a thin cardigan of some sort… -.-” …about an hour later…The organiser said to get our phones ready and that we were going to go in and have one photo with the band. No autographs, no gift-giving (we had to give our gifts to the organisers)…and yeah it was one photo then go…Apparently, we aren’t allowed to take photos of other people getting their photos either…it was only the organisers that were allowed to take the photos.

I talked to the girls behind me as we waited nervously for our turn to get our photos taken. We observed what poses and things that other people did. All the girls gave all the band members hugs…the guys did some handshakes… I decided I was so going to give them hugs too ..XD…but I did not plan what I was going to say to them…and suddenly it was my turn already….! All that came to my mind was “Thank you so much for coming to Adelaide’ in which Taka (the lead singer) replied, “No, Thank YOU for letting us come here”… OMG so sincere and like totally fangirled…they are super humble and nice people… I gave them each a hug…my favourite hug was with Taka of course..HAHAH…and then I smiled awkwardly and got my photo with and then it was off to wait for the concert to start at 7:30.

There were two other bands that played before ONE OK ROCK, they were good…but I was there for one reason only..LOL…ONE OK ROCK was scheduled for 9:30…so it was a bit of wait…but anticipation was building and building…and I was not disappointed. The musicians came on the stage *I THINK* (because I am too short to see) one by one and started playing…TAKA came out last and there was a huge cheering and yelling as he came out. I swear he has the demeanour of royalty…He was the star of the show (in my eyes)…! I could see the passion in his eyes…in his voice and his energy was infectious. All the members were sweating like crazy… My highlight of the night was when they started playing ‘The Beginning’, the first song that got me into the band. Everyone went crazy and I legit recorded the WHOLE song on video because. I had to.

At the unfortunate end of the show…they went off stage without a word. I think that was our cue to shout ENCORE. And of course, we did not disappoint.  We started with “ENCORE ENCORE”..then changed it to “ONE MORE SONG”… and after what seemed like the longest time… (I think they needed some time to retune the guitars, fix the drums, etc..sound check everything-before their ‘Encore’ which is planned LOL )…they came back on stage…and woohoo I forgot the last song..but it was good. Then Taka brought out a flag and said THANKYOU to us. He also then took out his phone and took a sweeping video of the audience in which he posted to his Instagram account. The drummer chucked his drumsticks out into the audience…a damn lucky guy near me caught one of them…we all had a look…the drum stick had ONE OK ROCK labelled on the bottom..but yeah they looked destroyed…! After one set…! They smashed the drum so hard… dedicated. The guitarists and bassists threw their picks into the crowd (I didn’t get anything T_T #short people problems) ..and Taka threw his towel and water bottle into the crowd…and that was the conclusion of an epic night. A memorable and wonderful night…it was about 11pm at that time…

I could be here forever typing out every detail..but I need to go back to work tmoro…LOL I took a day off today to recover my voice…hearing…and energy…but yeah I spent most of the day reliving the memories..searching for photos /videos on FB from other people…and listening to ONE OK ROCK…on replay…LOL

EYE OF THE STORM- If you have a chance to go…I highly recommend you attend..! This band is actually one of the few bands that sounds better LIVE than on their recordings in my opinion…even though their recordings are AWESOME good.

I had a few friends who bought their merchandise…which I personally think is a bit expensive…but it does support the band..I supported the band in a different way…but paying double amount for my ticket. In comparison to a jumper, I might buy and never wear after the night…I rather have the memory of having met the ‘KINGS’ live and have my photo to prove it. If you know me in real life, you would have seen my display pictures for my social accounts change to my photo with them. HAHAHA … ><

I hope they come again.. I will be waiting for you..!

Thank you for reading this far (if you did)…next post will be the next part of NZ mini blog series….

Photos I took at the concert: