The Isolation Diaries
Days 7 and 8: 4 – 5 April

Another favourite place at the Sydney Royal Easter Show: the Woodchop arena

Virtual Reality??????
Click or scroll down to find out about the Sydney Royal Easter Show online & other initiatives
One week in:
Well here I am again, one week since we arrived back in Australia. Not sure when we can go home as we have variously been told midnight two weeks after arrival, which in effect would mean Monday 13th, then Saturday 11th (which was cause for celebration) and then Sunday 12th and then Sunday 12th at midnight again. Time will tell. In any case, as a lovely policeman explained on the phone, we will be issued with yellow wrist bands to wear which will indicate that we have done the required 14 days enforced isolation.
Thanks so much again for your lovely messages of support and feedback. It is greatly appreciated.
I hope you are still seeing my video diaries which I continue to do daily here and here on Instagram and here and here on Facebook. 

Happiness is a cup of coffee

I didn’t quite bring everything up to date in my last diary. As I said the days all merge into one.
Thank you Hilton Hotel
So now we can order coffee which is wonderful. We order once in the morning and once in the afternoon and it is a real treat.
There is also a limited beverage and snack menu.  We rang yesterday afternoon to order a bottle of wine, only to be told it had to be ordered before 10am. Not sure why (probably a staffing issue) as we certainly didn’t want to start drinking during the day! We made sure we ordered first thing this morning and are happy to say, it is here.
Swinging Emotions
I am, by nature, a happy and positive person, but yesterday was tough. I just felt flat and down all day so tried to limit my screen time and take some time out. I posted only a very short video diary.
Like many others, much of my work has evaporated as hosted trips, MCing and public events, presenting on cruises etc are cancelled. But it is not this really.
There are the little things you miss, but add them up and they become more distressing. Forgive me, but I would like a toilet brush to clean my toilet, to eat off a plate again and use real cutlery. An older lady in a room down the hallway has just been crying and calling out, her husband explaining to concerned police that when they left London they did not know this would happen and they feel hijacked. I really fear for the mental health of many in isolation, whether forced or at home and for those who live alone or, by contrast, are crowded in a confined space.
The lack of fresh air and sunshine is a big part of this too and the ongoing related sleep issues are a big cause I know. And we put the clocks back last night, giving an extra hour to that wakefulness. Today I feel my chest is tight and feel that I am just not getting enough oxygen. Who knows?
I feel for everyone who is isolated wherever they are because human beings are just that, human, and thrive on interaction and touch. It is so hard for everyone not to be able to hug their loved ones. I am so grateful that John and I are in this forced isolation together. However, I feel it keenly that I am missing my grandson who is growing so rapidly and is now 9 months old. Such a happy, sturdy baby and I long to blow raspberries on his fat arms. Similarly my 3 year old granddaughter. I was very close to her, but feel the distance despite our ability to Facetime and the like.
Thank heavens for modern day communication
Mobile phones, Facetime, What’s App and Skype are so amazing at times like this. Go To Meetings is quite good but Zoom is my latest go to app. I had previously been attending Board Meetings for Women in Hospitality with this but now have been able to hook up with friends and last night, my sister, brother-in-law and niece. It cheered us all.However, it is really important to avoid talking COVID-19 incessantly and to have other normal and stimulating conversations. 

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

As you can see, our food is fine now. We always remove the sweet things and the extra bread rolls so we don’t overeat and are able to supplement with some fresh salad leaves which I still have from my sister’s delivery.
Invariably dinner is often lukewarm – which is understandable as it is delivered from outside. I have a new technique – the closest I get to cooking. Last night I filled that bathroom sink with boiling water and put our Chinese containers in to warm up. Then for my mushroom risotto, I put a little packet of butter in and splashed over some more boiling water from the kettle and forked it through. Success!

Virtual Reality – Real or Imagined?

The Royal Agricultural Society of NSW Foundation Ag Bag which is an Easter Show favourite now available online

Missing your fairy floss fix, cosy woollen knits and expertly crafted cheese?

You can now shop for all your Show goodies with the 2020 Sydney Royal Easter Show Marketplace, featuring over 100 local exhibitors. Head over here to to browse a range of wonderful businesses and show your support. 

Also, don’t miss your opportunity to purchase ‘the bag that gives back, the RASF Ag Bag, featuring Australian made products. All proceeds of from this bag goes into supporting rural and regional communities via the RAS Foundation Community Future Grants.

Postage is now available within AustraliaClick here to  find out more and to purchase the 2020 RASF Ag Bag.

Buy a “virtual scone”, get the recipe and support the CWA

The very fabulous Country Women’s Association (CWA) of NSW has come up with an innovative idea. For the first time in 73 years their Tea Rooms at the Royal Easter Show won’t be running leaving significant gap as it is their major fundraising of the year.

If you’d like to still support the CWA of NSW this year, you can now buy a “virtual scone”. This comes with a certificate and a recipe so you can make your own scones at home.
Click here to find out more.

CWA Woy Woy Branch are also releasing a simple Recipe Of The Week, approachable and perhaps with minimal ingredients with variations and serving suggestions. This week it is Meatloaf using only three ingredients.

When I finish my forced isolation, I will go back to my Weekly Updates full of other recipes and ideas. Thank you for your patience.


I asked the delightful staff who deliver our food who the caterer now is. It is Celeste Catering, so I am writing to them, copying the hotel, for looking after us.
I have also written to the Police Commissioner to commend the police who are stationed at the Hilton. They are invariably friendly, calm and happy to explain. 

Stay safe, healthy and happy. Keep up to date with my isolation on all my social media channels: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter Pinterest and my YouTube channel.

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