So here we go again – lockdown 2.0. Surely we’re better prepared this time? Here are a few of the lockdown lessons from last time that may come in handy…

1. Aussie Humour Will Get Us Through

Memes from all over the globe may have got us through the last restrictions on a daily basis, but it was some quality Aussie humour that stole the show.

During Lockdown Mark 1 Mosman’s mystery dinosaurs were unmasked as Justin and Jane, who bought the costumes to visit their grandkids (via their home windows) in a Covid-safe and hilarious way! Passers-by in Cremorne certainly did a double take upon spotting this duo… Photographer Tammy Ting Ting from Studio Tingting was the photographer behind these wonderful images.

And then there was Danielle Askew, who decided to have some fun one bin night during isolation by dressing up as Elsa from Frozen to amuse the neighbours and her Facebook friends. But she never could have imagined what she was about to start. The Bin Isolation Facebook Group quickly grew to one million members and made news headlines around the world. It also kept everyone smiling.

Pictured is one of our own local participants, 15-year-old Karina, a WGHS student, dressed up as Marie Antoinette (captured beautifully by her mum, Monique.) Feel free to rehash the idea this time around and share pics in Ku-ring-gai Living – we’d all love to see them!

Other Aussie comedy legends to emerge during COVID restrictions that you may want to revisit and keep an eye on include Jimmy Rees (click here), and Sammy J – check out his Corona Yoga video and Home School with Mr Dad (click here)

2. No One Needs to Hoard!!

How absolutely bizarre was it that toilet paper was the hottest commodity during lockdown? Even ahead of long-life food and other non-perishable goods (which any good prepper will tell you to grab first). Authorities and heads of supermarkets scratched their heads while maintaining there was no shortage as most of our toilet paper is manufactured right here in Australia. However, the ridiculous herd mentality that ensued meant that shelves were cleared faster than they could be stocked, and we were soon all limited to a few rolls per shop. Cries of “does anyone have a square to spare” became common across social media.

The situation became so ridiculous that the police were called to disputes – such as the one where a knife was pulled in an argument over toilet roll. It was also being sold for hundreds of dollars online.

On Ku-ring-gai Living, members shared their amazement at images of empty shelves, and also shared many a roll of loo paper with those in need.

3. Be Prepared for Things to Get Hairy

It’s amazing how quickly you can let things slide when you don’t have to show up in public every day. Combine that with how quickly human hair grows and we were all in for a shock every time we looked in a mirror – regrowth, grey hair, long hair, spiky chins, spiky legs. Hairdressers and beauticians (specifically hair removal experts) were inundated with appointment requests when lockdown finally ended. Be prepared for the same to happen this time! We’re also wondering whether the experimental haircut trend will feature again this lockdown… we hope not!

4. Definitely Wear Pants to A Zoom Meeting

Talking about letting oneself go… hands up if you dressed up on top and relaxed your attire down low? After all, who can see what you’re wearing below the midriff on Zoom? You may be surprised to learn that apparently up to 10% of your colleagues were pants-less during meetings in restrictions.

In the US, The Fishbowl did a survey on this very topic during restrictions asking users, “Do you wear pants while on video conference calls?”

Here’s what they discovered:

  • 1 out of 10 people (9.6%) wear only underwear below the belt during video conference calls. Men answered that they video conference in their underwear at more than three times a higher rate than women at 14.27% vs 4.72%
  • Only 3% of professionals wear professional attire in video meetings
  • 75.20% answered with pyjamas, sweats, shorts, or leggings
  • 12.50% answered with jeans

A few were caught out on camera, like this poor news reporter:

5. Restrictions Are a Teddy Bears’ Picnic

Yes, that’s a total lie – restrictions are no picnic for parents, but don’t you recall being incredibly grateful for the cute idea that came from the children’s book ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’.? People all over Sydney popped teddy bears in their front windows (and porches and trees) so that kids on their one walk a day could spy all the teddies. Please pop those teddies back, people – it’s a fun, easy way to entertain kids during lockdown and it’s necessary for parents’ sanity!

6. Teaching is For Professionals Only

Speaking of parent’s sanity, was anyone else under the illusion that home-schooling was not only going to be easy but you were actually going to bridge all those gaps in your child’s learning? We all learned (probably on day one) that teachers are NOT PAID ANYWHERE NEAR WHAT THEY’RE WORTH!

Not only did most of us realise we no longer had a math level above the third grade, but even the technology we were forced to access for the daily schedule was way beyond our skillset. Seesaw was not our friend.

7. Don’t Take out a Second Mortgage for a Covid Dog

Last year during restrictions, it seemed every second house on the street was getting a pandemic puppy. And the prices of some breeds went through the roof – any pup that was part oodle needed a second mortgage taken out to purchase. If you’re thinking of adding to the family during this lockdown, please check the RSPCA and local animal shelters, as these are still dealing with the increase in ”strays” and animals handed in after the last lockdown when people went back to work and decided having a pet was no longer viable.

There were also reports of ‘over walking” during the last restrictions, with many pet owners using their furry friends as a boredom buster. The RSPCA put out a warning, that “far from benefiting from repeated walks around the blocks, dogs are presenting to vets with an increasing number of repetitive strain-type injuries.”.

8. Survivalist Skills Are Not Mastered in a Month

A survivalist or ‘homesteader’ “is someone who seeks a lifestyle of self-sufficiency involving home agriculture, home preservation of foodstuffs, and the small-scale production of textiles, clothing, and craftwork.”

Well we all might have tried our hands at bread baking, vegetable growing, DIY home renos, and there was definitely loads of craft, but from personal disastrous attempts with sourdough starter we’re not convinced ANYONE could have made it to survival-skill level homesteading during the last lockdown.

9. You Can Still Support Local

Sometimes it was easy in our little lockdown bubble to forget that the businesses we usually frequented on a daily basis were in absolute crisis – cafes, restaurants, gyms, yoga studios and many a mum-and-pop style corner store had suddenly been forced to shut with all of their stock going to waste. Some managed to pivot and provide takeaway or delivery, and others headed online. Many just managed to make it through thanks to those at home seeking them out and ensuring they still supported their small local businesses. Let’s do it again and try to keep our great businesses afloat!

10. We’re All in This Together

We saw some incredible acts of community spirit and kindness during the last restrictions. Neighbours checking on neighbours, people offering to assist the elderly or those who couldn’t leave their homes, positive messages on sidewalks, and amazing initiatives to assist and acknowledge our healthcare workers. Many people will be scared, many will be lonely, many will benefit from a little kindness. Reach out if you need any kind of help – especially via the Ku-ring-gai Living Facebook group where we know our amazing community always rallies to help one another.

Here’s hoping we can all stay positive and that kindness rules again during these restrictions!

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