They say to always look for the silver lining, even in bad situations. But over the past 18 months that could be proving difficult for many Kiwis, even right up to today.
With lockdowns, separated families and struggling businesses, there have not been a whole lot of positives to come out of the pandemic era.
But one upside for my wife Katie and I, is that we have totally bought into the whole explore your own backyard thing.
We've been together 25 years and done a lot of travel, but because of our hobbies it has mostly been based around speedway locations and weekends away.
So recently we've been going to new places, without the speedway fix!
We've renewed our passion for camping by spending a number of weekends at Ohiwa Beach.
We have explored the east coast of Wellington and up through Wairarapa, and this past weekend travelled with friends for a weekend in Ohakune.
We'd only ever driven through the town on snow-related detours, so really enjoyed checking it out.
Our next trip (which was booked just before this latest lockdown) is to explore parts of Northland we've never been.
It's planned for Labour weekend, so we've got our fingers crossed for a level change soon so we can drive there. Look for those positives when we can.
On that note, this week has been Mental Health Awareness Week.
Again, it is so tough for many with what's happening right now. But find something that takes your mind off the stresses, even if it is as simple as a walk in the Redwoods.
And importantly, reach out to someone if you need to talk.
Because of cartoons and movies, we tend to believe that we have a pretty solid idea of what an alien might look like. But could we be wrong?
This story caught my eye this week, with reports that some scientists are speculating that penguins may be aliens.
Usually we think all kinds of cute things with penguins dancing on bluebird potato chip ads, or behind the glass at Kelly Tarltons in Auckland.
But this revelation comes after traces of a chemical from Venus were found in penguin droppings.
Experts from Imperial College in London are struggling to explain how phosphine exists on Earth – 38 million miles away from Venus.
Last year, traces of the chemical were found in layers of gas surrounding Venus, which has a similar atmosphere to Earth.
The researchers say studying penguins could help them identify the types of organisms that exist on other worlds.
Somehow, I just don't think a movie about Alien Penguins would have any box office clout.
As I wrote about earlier, I am heading away for Labour weekend (hopefully) but traditionally that weekend can also be the one where a lot of people start seriously with the outdoor spring clean and backyard tidy up.
If that is your plan, The Hits and Stihl Shop Lakelands can help get you sorted.
We've got the Stihl Battery-powered Garden Pruner to give away over the next couple of weeks.
Ideal for pruning trees and shrubs, and cutting up garden waste, and it is designed to be comfortable and simple to use.
The Stihl GTA 26 kit comes with battery, charger, and a carry case, plus we'll throw in the handy holster; all up valued at $370.
Simply share a photo of your backyard to get in the draw. Head to the 'win' page at thehits.co.nz to register, or listen to my show for the easy phone entry to the draw.
Paul Hickey is the host of the local Rotorua show on The Hits Rotorua weekdays between 9am and 3pm. Listen on 97.5FM or download the iHeartRadio app. Follow The Hits Rotorua and Paul on Facebook and Instagram.