What did you learn about yourself - and your world - from Level 4 lockdown? Email us your stories at the link below.
Maybe you perfected your sourdough. Maybe you wrote a novel. Maybe you fell out of love. Maybe just wearing pants was a victory.
The word "unprecedented" has been used so often over the past four weeks, but is there a better descriptor for what Aotearoa did to fight Covid-19? A nationwide shutdown of all but essential services; a whānau of five million in this together - but apart. At 11.59pm on Wednesday March 25, we were confined to our home bubbles, consigned to only the company we were keeping at that moment. And it changed us.
On Day 13, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, acknowledged: "I miss people". On social media, we fantasised about a new world. Author Elizabeth Knox wrote, "Lockdown has made me want no cars ever. Buses and e-bikes, and e-trikes for older people." Comedian Dai Henwood asked "How would you prepare differently? More track pants?"
AdvertisementAdvertise with NZME.
We swapped martinis for quarantinis and hui became zui as we mastered video conferencing. But life and death did not stop. Babies were born, people died and we weren't there. Was there anyone who didn't cry? The lockdown was for richer, for poorer, but some people had it better and some people had it much, much worse.
Today, the Prime Minister announced plans to move to Level 3 from next Tuesday. Soon, we can walk on a beach. Three-quarters of us live within 10 kilometres of the ocean. So near, but lately, so far. Will we ever take that for granted again?
Some more life lessons from Level 4: A good scone is hard to make. Cold houses are colder when there is no escape. If real gym classes had couches, they might be as appealing as virtual gym classes. Teachers work hard. We love our grandparents more than we've said out loud. We really, really love health workers, supermarket staff and courier drivers. We are changed.
Today, we're asking New Zealand Herald readers to reflect on life at Level 4. How did this whānau of five million achieve what much of the rest of the world is still trying to do? We're inviting you to share your thoughts and stories.
Email us using the link at the top of this story with a few words, a drawing or a photograph, that reflect your past month. Include your name and age (or let us know if you want to remain anonymous), and next Monday, we'll report back in a special feature: Life lessons from Level 4 - what Aotearoa learned in lockdown.