A Bubble at the Bottom of the World

I remember the moment. We were backpackers, lounging in the late season Greek sunshine. A passing American woman said to her companion “I hear one’s hit the Whitehouse”. That day, September 11 2001, was the day they said the world changed. Forever. All I wanted to do was return home. To a safe haven. To a pretty little set of islands at the bottom of the world.

Today the world is in chaos. This time we hope, from our seats indoors in the developed world, that the conflict’s been paused. And this time it really is the whole world, and not just the loudest parts. But I can’t help feeling like so much of the world don’t know how serious this pandemic has become. It’s a bit like Band Aid wondering if they know it’s Christmas time. Covid 19 doesn’t care about geopolitics or class. It even has a hold on the heir to the British throne. It’s led to the closure of our borders and the inevitable shutdown of 20% of the global population.

Our bubble feels remote in times of conflict. Our peaceful shores jolt in surprise when they’re touched by horrendous acts of terrorism. Some of us have prepared for the rumbling of our fault lines. But few of us could have ever planned for this. Two cool female scientists have become our go to heroes. Flying in the face of gender inequality and sexism in their chosen profession. One a microbiologist with vibrant pink hair. The other a Nanogirl on a mission to turn us all into budding scientists. Could this be a balancing of the gender ledger?

Planet earth will be drinking in the fresh air. Will 2020 be the year we turn the tide on climate change? Will we fly less, drive less, be less determined to consume and spend more time together?

Life in lock-down is the same but different. We’re a family who play together. We like adventures and exploring new places, and we usually do this as a team. The difference is we’re exploring the world from home. Because even our local park is a collection of virus hosting surfaces. Technology has become a lifeline. From online learning and ballet classes, to daily releases of audio books and a world of applications to connect that we never knew existed. From divided generations to zooming together as one. I’m now feeling “down with the kids”.

Watch this space for updates on life in our bubble.

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