Fans seem to think Taylor Swift is in Donegal
Fans seem to think Taylor Swift is in Donegal

Sarah Finnan

Britney Spears’ lawyer files request for new conservator of her finances
Britney Spears’ lawyer files request for new conservator of her finances

Jennifer McShane

All you need to know about Elizabeth Holmes’ unbelievable Theranos fraud case
All you need to know about Elizabeth Holmes’ unbelievable Theranos fraud case

Jennifer McShane

Millie Mackintosh opens up about her c-section experience and recovery
Millie Mackintosh opens up about her c-section experience and recovery

Sarah Finnan

Andie MacDowell: Why is my grey hair an issue and George Clooney’s isn’t?
Andie MacDowell: Why is my grey hair an issue and George Clooney’s isn’t?

Sarah Finnan

Looks like weddings of 100 guests might go ahead this August, under one condition
Looks like weddings of 100 guests might go ahead this August, under one condition

Lauren Heskin

Pink offered to pay the Norwegian beach handball team’s fine for not wearing bikini bottoms
Pink offered to pay the Norwegian beach handball team’s fine for not wearing bikini bottoms

Sarah Finnan

Long Covid: ‘I never expected chronic fatigue and its impact on my family’
Long Covid: ‘I never expected chronic fatigue and its impact on my family’

Jennifer McShane

30 life questions that will strengthen your closest friendships
30 life questions that will strengthen your closest friendships

Geraldine Carton

7 comforting films worth watching to take your mind off Covid
7 comforting films worth watching to take your mind off Covid

Jennifer McShane

Image / Editorial

Emma in Sydney: ‘I have to say, home has never felt so far away’


by IMAGE
30th Mar 2020

In the midst of the Coronavirus crisis IMAGE has reached out to women all over the world to hear how the disease is impacting their lives and their country. Emma Priestman is originally from Dublin and now living in Sydney


Our first trip home as a family with our firstborn (now three-months-old) was an extended 2-month holiday in May back to Ireland and Spain during the northern hemisphere’s warmer months…a hugely exciting trip.

I have to say, home has now never felt so far away.

Living in Australia and denying our daughter the opportunity to grow up alongside her cousins, aunts, uncles and of course grandparents was a hard decision to make. So we agreed – until the day comes that we move back – we would travel to Ireland as frequently as possible.  Needless to say, the strict travel ban now in place as a result of COVD-19, and perhaps more specifically the ambiguous length of that ban, has been a hard blow for our family to take. Like much of the world, that is now on pause. We are fortunate that our loved ones are safe and healthy, and right now that’s about as much as one can hope for. But I have to say, home has now never felt so far away.

Ex-pats and travellers

The travel ban is just one of many measures that the Australian federal government has announced recently. These harsher measures have been introduced as a result of questionable behaviours (credit Bondi Beach) which illustrates just how difficult Australia is finding it to adjust its outdoor lifestyle.

People are increasingly influenced by the attitudes, actions and experiences of their native countries

With the sun shining through these warmer months, the ban on days spent with friends at the beach, an extended family barbeque sand even the weekly sporting activities has been difficult to enforce. This becomes ever more complex with the large number of ex-pats and travellers who densely populate Australia’s COVD-19 hotspots, many of whom do not (generally) have their own extended family to consider for social distancing. Not that it’s any excuse for us.

Given the eclectic mix of people and nationalities in the major Australian cities, the source of news, hearsay, and advice can in some instances be very different. People are increasingly influenced by the attitudes, actions and experiences of their native countries (in some instances with their approach to the virus almost mirroring those abroad).

Inconsistent

Right now, you can’t attend a relatives funeral (with more than x people) but you can get your weekly blow-dry if it can be done in under 30 mins.

The Australian government has been inconsistent in its approach, and with social media meaning global news at our fingertips, some fear the approach has been too little (and too late) and we will face a similar trajectory to those countries now in the peak of the crisis. Whilst testing rates are some of the best in the world, Australia- a country well known for its strict quarantine rules (think being fined $400 for bringing an apple through customs in your bag by accident)- somehow recently allowed passengers (some infected) from a cruise ship roam Sydney last week without any checks.

The consensus here is, it’s all a bit confusing.

Right now, you can’t attend a relatives funeral (with more than x people) but you can get your weekly blow-dry if it can be done in under 30 mins. And the matter of schools is still unresolved, with the Federal Government recommending schools remain open whereas some states choosing to close them (Victoria the first to move). The consensus here is, it’s all a bit confusing.

I would like to see Australia roll up its sleeves and unite in the way it did during the recent bushfire crises

It’s believed that the worst is yet to be seen here. I would like to see Australia roll up its sleeves and unite in the way it did during the recent bushfire crises. I’ve no doubt that whatever happens next across the world, we will all come to appreciate what truly matters; reunions will take a different meaning, special occasions will have a new layer of celebration, a hug will reach through to the bones, and for us… the emerald isle will never look so good.


Read more: Mary in Marseille: ‘I have lived and worked in many trouble spots where lockdowns and curfews were common’

Read more: Alex in Barcelona: ‘My kids and I have not left our 90sm apartment in 16 days’

Read more: Charlie in Singapore:  ‘In Singapore on average, I have my temperature taken 6 times a day’

Read more: Eimear in Surrey: ‘I got a temperature and a headache. I went into a deep depression and panic’

Read more: From Singapore to Sydney: Women around the world tell us how coronavirus is impacting their lives

Also Read

EDITORIAL
‘Quite interesting’: Princess Anne comments on The Crown

We’ve all heard that the royal family don’t exactly gather round to watch The Crown, but one member has shared...

By Jennifer McShane

EDITORIAL
‘Suddenly alive again’: The heartbreaking joy of finding a deceased loved one on Google Maps street view

“I look at my mum’s old house on Google maps street view, the house where I grew up. It says...

By Amanda Cassidy

AGENDA, EDITORIAL
Andrew McGinley: ‘I know that they wouldn’t want me to be sad.’

Following the utterly devastating trial of his wife Deirdre last week, Andrew McGinley spoke afterward of the love of his...

By Jennifer McShane

Keith-_-Tara_130_Web Shantanu Starick painting kitchen cabinets
EDITORIAL
How to limit drips and brush strokes while painting kitchen cabinets

Painting kitchen cabinets can be transformative and can be achieved relatively low-cost, but you need the right equipment, and a lot of...

By Amanda Kavanagh

EDITORIAL
You don’t have to love football to have been affected by the tragic scenes at the Finland Denmark game

There were heartbreaking scenes as footballer Christian Eriksen was given CPR at the European Championship game Questions have been raised...

By Amanda Cassidy

EDITORIAL
‘We went to the zoo today – and life felt deliciously normal’

What’s seldom is truly wonderful, writes Amanda Cassidy Dublin Zoo has been the backdrop to our children’s lives – birthday...

By Amanda Cassidy

EDITORIAL
Emerging after the pandemic: ‘There’s an awkwardness to my interactions, like I’ve forgotten how to socialise’

In just a few months, human contact became one of the most feared gestures. Being around people we loved was...

By Amanda Cassidy