Today is April 22nd, 2020.
You’re not actually born yet obviously. Your mother is only 15 but I’ve been thinking about you quite a lot these days.
As you may have guessed seeing today’s date, I’m writing this letter during France’s first Coronavirus lockdown. This seems like such an important period in the history of our world. I’m not sure we’ve all realized that already.
Yesterday I posted a photo on Instagram of a crowded beach I took years ago when living in the South of France. Instagram was a “social media” back then. A device we used to share photos on the internet. It’s a bitter sweet memory to think what “social” meant then. Anyway, my photo received a few likes and comments. Two of them highlighted the fact crowded beaches were never a thing they’d miss. How ironic!
I’m been obsessing with all the things you’re going to miss.
Just before the lockdown, I was about to start my 4th season on board ferries. I was a stewardess. My job consisted of taking care of an average 2,000 passengers. The crossings to Spain during the summer months could get pretty packed. But what an invigorating atmosphere!
Right now, I don’t really know which job I’ll be able to do in the future. The tourism industry will suffer greatly. And surely, being a seasonal worker with a seasonal virus around doesn’t seem very sensible.
I’d be very tempted to go back to the catering business which is my first love, but restaurants and bars have been closed for 5 weeks now. And the situation in this field seems just as insecure as my ferry job.
Will you still have restaurants like the ones we’ve known. Will you be able to try a busy British pub on a Friday night when you have to fight you way to the bar? Will you have a great Bar à Vins in your neighborhood where you need to shout to be heard in the noisy crowd? Will you be waitressing as a student job, clearing tables and touching other people’s plates?
Also, this was the time when your grand-father, your mother and I were thinking of moving away again. I didn’t like being a country dweller I had realized after 5 years in Brittany. And too often, living in this rural fringe location made me think I had also traveled back in time. Too medieval for me!
In 3 weeks from now, they say they will start the déconfinement. We’re wondering if we should put our house for sale right away, hoping many Parisian families will now search secondary homes with a garden for the future lockdowns?
You have no idea how many questions this first quarantine raised in people’s minds…
Spring 2020 was also when your grandfather thought about getting a teaching degree. Your mother was obsessing about starting high-school in September after a spoiled last year at secondary school.
And as always, I was lost and navigating between everybody’s needs. Your grand-grandmother was all alone in Marseille and it didn’t help with her mental health. So it didn’t help with mine either!
I think of you.
You know your mother won a writing contest when she was 10. Her text was called Un Monde Sans Couleur. It was a dystopian story about a world where colors were forbidden. You’ll have to read it. It’s frightening…