A year and a half in the life of FGV
This past year and a half has been full of dramatic twists and turns, that’s for sure.
I relocated from Mexico City (where I was visiting) to Sheffield back in July 2020. That flight back to the UK during the height of the global pandemic was intense and included a 24-hour stint in Toronto during which I slept on the airport floor and ate out of the vending machine. I had left behind 3 months of almost complete lockdown in Mexico and I was terrified to be so exposed.
The hotel isolation period was excruciatingly expensive and lonely in London. My life had been turned upside down and I was paying handsomely for the privilege.
Once out of isolation, I worked with legendary food company Make No Bones helping them set up Saucy and La Fonda in Sheffield. I did all sorts of jobs for them, including working in frontline hospitality. It was at times exhausting and I didn’t like being customer facing, but we do what we have to do!
My partner Gil traveled to Sheffield to stay with me and while lockdown in the South Yorkshire city during winter was emotionally gruelling, it was a joy to have him by my side. Months and months passed during which the only entertainment we had was to go for a walk through the deserted streets of our neighbourhood. Oh, we also watched a few hundred hours of Drag Race.
I am now back in London, helping vegan fast food pioneers Temple of Seitan with some work and living with Gil. We also got married a few weeks ago and Gil is in the middle of applying for a visa to stay permanently with me in the UK.
The inability to see friends and family has been tough and the financial instability caused by the pandemic has been stressful. I’m working out my tactic for the upcoming discussion I need to have with the tax office. At the moment the best reasoning I have is, “If I don’t have the money, how do you expect me to pay?”.
But I’m not alone in these struggles and I wish everyone love and support as we continue to work to get life back on track.
It’s easy to think that WE MUST be coming out of the pandemic based on the length of time we have endured, but there are still obstacles in front of us. Heck, I’m caring for my husband right now as he has developed mild COVID symptoms and has tested positive using the at-home test from the NHS. We are waiting on further results.
A year and a half into this thing and we are now isolating for the next two weeks. A dear friend of my husband passed away a few days ago in Mexico City following COVID illness. Friends all over the world have lost parents to COVID and have had to grieve on their own.
Prior to this latest isolation stint, Gil and I were starting to access ‘normal’ life again. We are both twice vaccinated and the call of the city is strong. We felt it was time to safely return, in stages. Right up until this latest isolation stint, we both worse masks indoors and avoided a lot of activities that we would normally do.
But the ease with which COVID spreads caught up with him and I’m hoping for a quick and speedy recovery (and that I can somehow dodge it).
I know I usually use these pages to champion vegan eating and lifestyles, but I think it is also important to make emotional connections about this monumental global event and this tough time in history.
For everyone who has lost loved ones, my heart is heavy for you and I send you warmest wishes and kind thoughts. My friends Neil, Fiona, and Carlos are in my thoughts often and I’m deeply saddened by the loss of their parents. For people living with COVID right now (such as my husband), I hope for a speedy recovery. For the many people living with long COVID, I hope the world’s understanding of how to treat the virus keeps expanding and will soon help you.
And finally, thank you to all the people taking up the vaccines as soon as possible. I’m hopeful the vaccine will help protect my husband, while every single person who has been vaccinated has played a role in keeping our communities that little bit more protected.