It’s Summer in Australia.

It’s summer in Australia, and apparently La Niña is making it hotter than usual this year. I could take a whole paragraph complaining about the heat, but I’m sure most of us are no strangers to hot weather. Instead, I would like to share a non-revelation-revelation with you, about how time flies.

At the time of writing, I had just come back home from a dinner get-together with my relatives in celebration of the lunar new year, and it really struck me that a whole year has gone by. I remember our dinner in the previous year so vividly it was as if it was only a week ago – my aunt picked me up; we hadn’t seen each other in months; I brought cake; dinner was incredibly filling; and we had great conversation in the car as she drove me home.

The details this year are a bit different (more relatives were present), but the description above of the previous year is just as accurate for what happened this year, and perhaps it was a trigger that brought back memories of the same event from last year, but I simply cannot believe how quickly an entire year has come and gone. Sure, the pandemic has put a lot of my plans on hold, but this is becoming a weak excuse for not living in the present, as the days go by and the cases go up and down.

Back when we thought this was going to take two weeks or up to two months, it was permissible to zone out for some time and wait for things to get back to normal, but two years have gone by and it seems that a ‘new normal’ has set in, and it is really time to zone back in. Many people on social media have proposed a healthy change of environment for those who feel ‘stuck’ after spending so much time at home, but even after moving into my current apartment in March, or going out on regular ‘mental health walks,’ I still feel as though life is uneventful, and time is just passing us by.

I heard from a friend who is a teacher, that some students who suffered in a physical classroom are doing great with online classes, but the same could not be said about some who performed well when attending school in person. I’m assuming the same can be said about adults who are working from home. It was interesting to see how people are forced to adapt, and how creative solutions are used to solve new problems in productivity (one of my favorites is how people finally realized a lot of meetings could have really been dealt with via email). I’m still looking for ways to ‘fix’ my productivity.

I turned to watching shows on streaming services when I really should be doing productive things, but like I’ve mentioned above, enough is enough, especially because the excuse I’ve been using is getting flimsier by the day (or month or year). I did enjoy several shows that gave me insight I would not have otherwise, and it seems that the characters in the shows are a (albeit inadequate) substitute for human interaction. In an attempt to do something (anything) productive, I’ve been forcing myself to read a bit every day, and it helped me begin to overcome my dependence on shows to ‘maintain a good mood throughout the day’ (read as ‘maintain my sanity’).

Tragically, it seems that a lot of us seem to have become somewhat introverted, or at least less accustomed to interacting with people in person, and I think this has contributed to the decline of times I have seen my friends in the past year, despite the easing of lockdown restrictions. I do appreciate the ones who did make the extra effort to meet with me and catch up though.

Being an international student overseas, it was a treat to be with my relatives on new year’s eve – I haven’t seen my parents in a long time and I did not realize how much I miss having dinner with family until tonight, which reminded me how the last time we had dinner together was this time last year. Time really flies when using zoning out as a coping mechanism, it’s time to zone back in and I would like to document my journey here, I hope to write something at least twice a week.

TLDR; I’m back ouo)b