Socially close – english version

Socially close

Translation by Harald Frey
(He is the expert). Big thanks to my brother…

Social Distancing is the „NON-Word“ per se, next to Corona… I do thank Corinna Maag for inspiring me to the story. Changing the “t“ into a “d“ turns the word into „dancing“ . It does not sound totally harmonic, but dancing it becomes, anyway. Thats what we are doing right now, performing a kind of dance, at a distance of 1.5 or 2 yards. We circle around each other like the earth around the sun.

New ways of personal encounters deliberately

Where is the distance? Well, physically there is a distance. But more than ever. before I observe and feel that people get closer to each other, metaphorically spoken, they do it online. What a blessing, that this is possible because of smartphone, skype, ZOOM-Call and similar technical devices. The new media! We have to admit that telephone has been in us since 1876, and I am happy about the fact, that it is used again a lot today. We are talking with each other, on walks with the proposed distance. We meet, greet each other and are – more often than not – greeted back, at a distance, of course. It is just a short encounter, “How are you, take care, stay healthy“ and at once the sun seems to shine a little brighter. I must admit that in our village of Kummerfeld (near Hamburg in the North of Germany) greeting each other is quite normal, when you happen to meet someone. But today I do it with more awareness, with a special encouraging smile.

Riding my bike

Today I went around by bike and I met many people, walking the dog or just walking alone, couples, bikers. Each smile, each friendly word changes the day, gives us hope and confidence in a difficult time. You can do that yourself, just do it today!

We are connected by our mutual Topic

“Our world is out of joint.”

Hamlet, William Shakespeare

We are connected by our mutual Topic. And we do not know how long this will go on. Everyone worries, almost everyone. Yes, I do meet people who do not worry at all, at least that´s what they tell everyone. Enviable!! Most of us, however, do fear getting infected themselves. This goes most of all for those, who are not well ,or who have been ill during the last years. On top of this we fear for our loved ones, our friends and the others around us like our neighbours. And we fear, that there may be a shortage of food, of the daily bread. We fear that our existence is at stake. Our job is at risk, even the economy in general.

We do not know what will come out of it. We learn that all those things are unstable, the things which we thought to be solid.


Some are desperate because their business goes down. Many had to close their shops. Now some open again. It’s a risk. Many are glad that normal life begins to start again. With our learnings, I hope. All the small shops had to close, except those for food and everyday life items. This is a challenge, especially for the small travel agencies and the big ones, too. Our personal favourite island, Amrum, was closed, too. Tourism is the basis of the islanders. The tourists who had been looking forward to their holidays didn’t come until may 18. The event agencies are out of work and all those connected with events, caterer, technicians, artists, bands and orchestras. That will last.

Re-Orientation is possible in some places

Some people are creative and go online. Many things can be done online, but not all of them. Courses, seminars, even music and dancing lessons are available online. Many experts help explaining how to do things online, some offer webinars free of charge. On top of this, many people stay at work and keep going for the sake of others, for us. They do meet their limits, the supermarket assistants, all people in the health services, nurses, doctors, and others. The challenges are enormous, they really work up to their limit. The lorry drivers getting the goods to the shops and many others are “on the road“. Let us give them a special Thank You!

Our Environment benefits from the situation

There are positive developments for our environment. The air in China is not polluted any more, there are less cars on the roads because people are working Home Office. Hardly anybody goes by plane to visit customers anymore, most flights are cancelled anyway. Its really silent in the morning and evening too, in the sky above us. This, of course, is positive.
Maybe this was God´s idea ? Make us wake up?

There is a lot of help

There is a lot of help, e.g. young people go shopping for the elderly. Webinars and online-groups offer support and information, psychological and practical help. People care for each other even “long distance“. Those who live together with their own family or their partner, can embrace and stay “in touch“. But we have to keep away from friends, grown up children and grandchildren. We meet online. So I had my birthday breakfast with my son using “ZOOM“.

Social Encouragement

There are many encouraging actions, postings, pictures, even funny ones, sometimes on WhatsApp. There is a hooded hairdresser working two meters away from his customer, toilet paper as an object of special value in a car, and many others. Some postings are touching, others make us smile, some are ridiculous or stupid. We have to be careful not to hurt each other, but we do need some things that make us laugh.

Together, even at a distance

There are people singing together from their balconies. Orchestras playing together online , although their members are distributed all over Germany at their homes. There is a lot of creativity because of the distance they have to keep. People get together in a song or a symphony.

There is a proverb that comes to mind:
Sharing joy means more joy, sharing sorrow means less sorow.

Let´s look at some numbers

It is true, many have both happiness and sorrow, yes, even happiness, when they look at the facts. There are 310.000 inhabitants in our county, the infected amount to 178, that are 0.003%

What can we do?

When we keep apart for some weeks, we will get through the crisis faster. Afterwards, we will be able to embrace our friends again, the choir can meet again and practice, the fitness center will be open again, go to concerts, and meet with friends in restaurants. Right now: let us accept the new situation, value it and make most of it.

Let us help where we can!

Let us support those who are in trouble, who cannot visit their elderly family members or who even has eve n lost family members. Let them know they can rely on us.
Yesterday on DEUTSCHLANDFUNK I heard one of my favourite radio broadcast, LEBENSZEIT.

titled: Supporting Each Other – How we help each other!


An elderly lady, she lives alone, talked about her situation on German Deutschlandfunk. Here LINK you can hear it originally. Sometimes the neighbours place a bottle of wine, some flowers at her door. In the evening I offered to help by email, so far I only got an automatic response. Well I will find out what will come out to fit.
My motto is: to be aware of others and to support them. That is what we can do now. Maybe a new culture will develop because of it. Most important: Keep loving life!

This quotation sums up the situation:

You often have to be strong if you want to change something
But you have to be even stronger if you have to accept that things as they are and that you have to wait for the change.

Stay fit:-)) and call your contacts.

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