Blog: Good news from the pandemic times

Donatella shares random thoughts that helps her get distracted.
Foto: Sven Menschel

Tekst: Donatella Gasparro

Blogger Donatella thinks her opinion on corona won’t add anything to the debate, so she is sharing a couple of random thoughts that helped her get distracted from the pandemic.

We’re all talking about only one thing. And with good reason. I admit I can’t think about much else, and, since a week or so, 100 percent of my free time goes to reading articles about it, hearing from Italians about it, seeing funny memes about it and generally being worried about where the world is heading. Despite this, given I’m neither an epidemiologist nor a virologist, and my opinion won’t add anything to the already saturated, confusing, misleading, counter-productive debate, I’m going to write about something else. Here I go then, compiling a couple of random thoughts that helped me get distracted from the pandemic.


Garden season Quarantine does not scare droevendaalers. Spring is almost here; the sun gifted us wonderful weekends and leaves are coming back on trees. The message is clear: may the garden season begin. Preliminary weeding operations have already started in our little patches of land, and this weekend the compost we ordered in bulk arrived. Seeing a bunch of droevies busy shovelling and wheelbarrowing dirt back and forth from house to pile, from pile to house, in an intricate, untraceable net of borrowing and lending of wheelbarrows. In case the Netherlands follows Italy in locking down the country, we’ll be more than fine: enough to work on the outside, enough people to talk to inside, and, thanks to our bulk organic orders, enough food and supplies to survive.

 I love seeing how we creatively adapt and react to unusual, critical, brand new situations 

The web power

We are lucky enough to live in times of hyper-connectedness, with all the pros and cons thereof. Despite the general postponement and cancellation of basically everything I can think of, an impressive amount of things can still happen online. And this ranges from education to art events, from reunions with friends to guitar lessons. It’s amazing to see how quickly we’re all switching, adapting, working hard to make things still happen – but with the necessary distance


I love seeing how we creatively adapt and react to unusual, critical, brand new situations. And this ranges from funny alternative ways of greeting each other (I am a strong supporter of the elbow greeting for instance) to flashmobs on balconies all over the Italian boot, in which people sing and play music in a neighbourhood-level effort to reduce the quarantine boredom.

These are unpredictable, history-making times.  Let’s all be responsible, lucid and kind.

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