Picture of the Week

3 April 2020

Week 13: second week of confinement

Filed under: — Administrator @ 15:18

The second week of the state of emergency meant that I again had to make the best of the few photographic opportunities I have at home. We have settled into a routine of me closing the door to my home office and spending the day working from home. I am thankful to have a job that lends itself to teleworking, and to have the technology at my disposal to make it bearable.

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I continued to take pictures of my street in the morning when going to the bakery. On Sunday morning it was raining:
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I walked down to the beach to take in the wet emptiness:
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Coming home, I explored my garden a bit. I am no gardener to put it mildly but plants and flowers look nice with rain drops on them:
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This is the plant dearest to my heart, the lemon tree. I use the lemons for my drinks and also a lot of the dishes I cook need a dash of lemon juice. It is great to just pick a lemon from my own tree instead of having to buy them in the supermarket:
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During the following days, I continued to take little walks in the neighbourhood, using excuses such as going to the pharmacy or the supermarket. As always, I looked for little details:
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One afternoon, walking down my street, I saw this delightful lady with her two dogs, waving at everyone who walked by:
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The beach again, on a cloudy morning:
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The neighbourhood cats provide me with another photo opportunity during my short walks:
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On Wednesday night I attended a meeting of Viewfinders, the international photography club in Brussels to which I have belonged since I lived there in the late 1990s. Actually, I was supposed to be in Brussels this week but that trip was cancelled, and due to the movement restrictions in Brussels, the meeting was held online anyway (using Zoom). It was quite well attended:
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The theme of the meeting was post-processing. People had been sent a couple of photos and were then invited to post-process them to their liking and then explain to the rest of us why they did what they did, followed by critique from the audience. This is an example, a straight photo of a busker in Bratislava:
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And this is one member’s interpretation of that photo, along with comments from audience on the right:
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Yet another picture of my empty street, on Thursday morning:
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I walked by the beach on my way to the bakery. The morning sky was lovely:
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Normally, the beach would be tidied up in the morning, ready for people to enjoy it during the day. But right now, nature more or less takes its course since the beach is closed anyway:
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Since I cannot cycle on the roads (even taking walks is forbidden), I have bought a base to use a regular road bike as a stationary bike. I set it up on Thursday and used it for the first time:
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During this confinement, my wife has immersed herself in her two “stationary” passions, bridge and, here, piano:
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And Friday is still pizza day in our house, except that the pizza is made by my wife rather than the local pizzeria:
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On Saturday morning I again snuck down to the beach for a look at the early morning sun:
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On my way to the bakery, I saw a sight that made me sad–this is one of the many small businesses that may well not survive the current shutdown of the economy, and it happens to be owned by the son of a friend who just started it last year:
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Another sign of the times–the paper container overfilled with boxes, including some with the well-known logo. Online shopping is the only way to get hold of most non-food products right now:
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Saturday was my wife’s 60th birthday. Under normal circumstances we would have a big party, with something like 40-50 of our friends and acquaintances. Obviously, right now no such thing is possible, so the “party” was going to be just my wife, me and our daughter. We were going to have a surf-and-turf dinner, so I stopped by the local fishmongers to buy some tuna steaks. The shop has a strict corona virus protocol. Only 4 customers are allowed inside simultaneously, the rest wait outside:
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Inside, there is a plastic barrier between the merchandise and the employees on one side and the customers on the other side (additional precautions are in effect, for example, cash payments are strongly discouraged):
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Around lunchtime we started to celebrate my wife’s birthday; by then, our son in New Jersey was also up, so he could see his mother open the birthday present that he had ordered for her:
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A toast across the Atlantic:
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The present from our son was something quite useless right now when my wife cannot leave the house, but hopefully in a few months she will hit the golf course again, and then this gadget will be very useful:
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The present from me was also bought online and was also something which my wife will only be able to use once our confinement is over. I got her a nice handbag from the Italian designer Baldinini which I first “discovered” during a visit to Milan in November 2016. Not the kind of bag she will take to the supermarket, which is the only entertainment outside the home permitted right now.

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Then evening arrived and we had the birthday dinner:
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And our son joined us again at the critical moment:
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