Message From Cyprus Edition Five

Blessings, Grief and Goals

Location: Argaka Cyprus

The Numbers

Day 34 on Cyprus – Day 30 in Quarantine/Lockdown

April 11 th marked seven months since we left the USA

Cyprus Virus Cases as of today 620 – Deaths 13

See below for latest news and developments from the island under lockdown.


It’s Easter Sunday and I’m determined to count my blessings all day…and especially in this message before I move on to the other details of our lockdown life. There are many blessings and I remind myself this when I am falling down the rabbit hole of too much news, too much worry and too much social media. I am blessed;

  • I’m healthy and safe
  • Although I know some people with the virus, they are all acquaintances of acquaintances and so far none of my family or close circle of friends have been afflicted. That I know of.
  • My husband is with me
  • I can talk to my family and friends regularly
  • Cyprus is beautiful
  • Our villa and hosts have been exceptional
  • I have been to 110 countries and if I never get to travel again, well I have been to 110 countries and I am blessed.

It may be Easter in most of the world, but it’s not Easter here in Cyprus. We actually get to celebrate Easter twice. Small blessing. Today we celebrate on the day most of the Christian world celebrates and next Sunday the Orthodox Easter is celebrated. It’s something to look forward to, although we won’t leave the house for either of these holidays. Blessings.

Easter Blessings
Easter Blessings

Grief Becomes Goals

Like a big heavy wet blanket, grief is oppressive as it lays on our lives. I’m aware how many people have been feeling this way, and I have too. We are grieving for our past lives and for things familiar. Recognizing what this emotion is is definitely the healthiest step we can make, and recognizing the chapters and long road we face ahead is important.

On my run this morning I was remembering my personal battle of grief when my brother died. I was highly functioning for months following his death, handling all the gruesome details of my brother’s sudden death, pushing my grief away. There was a very poignant moment for me, when, feeling sorry for myself I was thinking how much I wanted things to just go back to normal. Normal.

What is normal after a loss, tragedy, crisis? It was that moment that I instinctively knew the answer to one of life’s most difficult questions. There never will be a normal of old. It’s gone, just like yesterday and two minutes ago. Can’t get it back. A new normal develops…and we gradually accept and live in it.

I think I’m making positive steps towards the new normal, as I have found myself much more engaged in trying to keep busy and definitely looking at what life will look like going forward. Blessings.

Keepimg Busy

Healthy Body and Mind

The movie Wall-E keeps running through my mind, where the human race needs to leave planet earth to let it heal. Remember? And they all live on some kind of Starship Enterprise, getting fat, and lazy and stupid.

Oh dear.

I am still finding it difficult to focus on reading…of all things. I should be devouring books, but I’m not. But I have found something else to take my mind off of the bad news. I’ve never allowed myself the time to listen to podcasts, take webinars, or sign up for classes on line. This past week I have done all of those things. And I have learned so much and it feels great.

Most of the learning I’m doing online is geared towards this blog (although I snuk in a cooking class)…how might this blog look in the months and years ahead with the changes in travel? How can I keep it viable and interesting, inspiring and fun? I took a class about Pinterest and Tailwind and am considering doing an online Tailwind consulting. Tailwind has always baffled me so I kind of ignore it. I also took a wonderful webinar about Instagram and learned some fun new things. Additionally I took a live online class with other bloggers about search engine optimization and affiliate options for bloggers. BTW check out my new and improved Pinterest account here. It’s pretty.

These are all things I never paid much attention to…but now I am learning and finding it really fascinating. Keeping my mind open to learning. I’m doing yoga and have a new app for that too and I’ve begun training for a half marathon. No Wall-E for this girl. Blessings.

Hiking on Mauritius
Keeping Positive

Latest Cyprus News

A lot of things happened this week on the island. First, the stay home lockdown has been extended to April 30 th, same as the USA. Easter has been “postponed” until May, as the government tries to get the Church to agree to not hold Easter services. A big task in this very religious country.

We still need to ask permission to leave the house, which we do via text. We went to the grocery store this week, and were stopped by the police at a road block. We had to show our “permission” to be out, and then we were flagged through. If we didn’t have that authorization, we would each be fined $300. Thousands of citations have been given over the past few weeks and one man has been arrested for some kind of fake SMS scheme he was running.

There was a flight that left Cyprus this week to Stockholm. We considered taking it, but decided against it. We would have needed to stay the night in Stockholm, take a second flight to London, stay the night in London and then take a third flight to Seattle. This did not seem like a healthy or safe scenario so we decided to wait.

We received a phone call from the Embassy checking on us. They were trying to determine the level of “need” each American has. This is good, the most interest they have shown in our welfare. We are aware that there are many people who have much more urgent reasons to get back to the USA (jobs, kids etc) than we do. We are also aware of some cases where people are running out of money and need to get out. We do not fall into those categories. We continue to be safe and comfortable. Blessings.

You may have seen the interview that I did with Q13 News in Seattle this week. It was fun to tell our story, even if they did pronounce my name wrong. It’s okay – not the first time I’ve been called Loud. 🙂

In our original itinerary we would have been touring the Caucasus right now; Armenia. Georgia and Azerbaijan. But we aren’t so no point in dwelling on it. It’s the new normal.

Still waiting for Airbnb to make it right by us. Flights we had in May have now all been canceled. Unfortunately they are giving credit not cash. Ugh.

My gut tells me we will be here until May…assuming the airport opens in early May. At that time we will determine a plan of action. But until then, we will certainly consider any possible flight that comes available, but more likely we will spend our days here, waiting like the rest of the world. Blessings.

Stay safe my friends. Be good to each other. Happy Easter.

Cyprus Lockdown
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  • Reply Lynn

    Your shared thoughts and observations often reflect my own, so I find them validating! Counting one’s blessings is a practice, isn’t it? We should have been leaving on one of our biggest ever trips– to a small island in the Indonesia archipelago, for free-diving on the last of the vibrant, living, fishy tropical reefs on the planet, Wakatobi Nat’l Park near Sulawesi: The trip is canceled and we are trudging thru the process of collecting trip insurance; my back has 3 bulging disks and may need surgery. But we are safe in our home and community, even if both of us tick more than one “high risk” health category box. My working spouse is an essential provider of mental health counseling for suicidal women and believe me, the need is very acute out there, even as the revenue has taken a huge hit. We have no idea what the future brings, so we count our blessings while trying to anticipate and plan for the worst. Continue to stay safe and learn new things you two!

    April 12, 2020 at 8:19 am
    • Reply Laureen

      Thanks for sharing your story and I feel happy if we can inspire anyone out there. Wishing your good health and wishing us all a bright future.

      April 12, 2020 at 8:40 am
  • Reply Michael Söhlke

    I am happy to hear that you are safe and healthy – happy Easter on Cyprus! Your reasoning is valid: no need to go through several airports and overnight stays without really knowing for sure whether a flight will finally take off. That leaves time for blessings, saying thanks for what we had and what we have, being greatful for family and friends and still – as you said – maintaining a fundamentally positive attitude. The virus will certainly change many things in our near future – we’ll see whether this is permanent. – Let’s pray that not too many people have to go through longer-term negative experiences. But let’s also pray that with all the personal and economical lockdowns in place and mostly no clear clues on how and when to lift the bans we won’t need to conclude “operation successsful, patient dead”…

    April 13, 2020 at 2:49 am
    • Reply Laureen

      As always, thanks for your insight. Please be safe.

      April 13, 2020 at 10:30 am

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