• Aisling Salisbury

If Only In My Dreams

Updated: Apr 21

It's Christmas time and you know what that means. The year is almost over and thank . . .

2020 has been a total disaster of a year that's for sure. We have seen our lives changed and probably not for the better. We now have massive overreach by Government bodies into our lives and total mass hysteria as too an end of intelligent conversation and sharing of personal viewpoints. Personally, my Christmas wish for this year is definitely that by this time next year people wake up and realise where we have all gone wrong and how much we gave up in 2020. It's not too late to turn the corner folks.


When it comes to Christmas in Australia, well, yeah it's summer folks. So it's hot as. Because of that, there is one version of Jingle Bells that certainly sums up an Australian Christmas.

Alright, that's a joke video by some of our greatest comedians, but it's true and probably the closes we have to an Aussie Chrissy Jingle. Nevertheless we Australians, despite it being a scorching 35+°C (95+°F) outside we still have a roast Turkey and/or Ham for Christmas Dinner and put on the Rat Pack classics. We don't have snow but yet we still hope for a White Christmas and enjoy all the classics about Christmas trees being the "sturdy kind that doesn't mind the snow". If anything we need a tree that can remain hydrated as long as possible during summer.


As Christmas songs start to play on the airways, and even in my playlist, there are two songs that are really sticking out for me right now. The first one is a very melancholic classic. My Christmas wish is the above yes, but there is still a wish that came in a close second place and that is, as the song states . . .

The history of that Christmas favourite "I'll be home for Christmas" goes back to World War 2 and is written from the viewpoint of a soldier writing home to his family whilst away at war. Well, I'm not at war so nothing compares to those circumstances. However, that feeling of being so close but can't be home with the family for a major event is no doubt really hitting a lot of folks right now, myself included.


There might not be 'snow or mistletoe' at my parent's home but as that Christmas classic touchingly ends on "if only in my dreams" because that's the best I could hope for in the present circumstances. For myself to go home and spend Christmas with my mum and dad, although not impossible, however, it would not have been easy or financially sound. So yes, "I'll be home for Christmas, if only in my dreams."


With this "pandemic" Australia has decided to shut itself off from the rest of the world. It has ashamedly abandoned its own citizens abroad. Because of COVID, Australia went down the path of a mandatory quarantine of 14 days. This isn't done at home but in a Government-run hotel facility. They charge you $3,000 for it too. They also capped the number of people allowed to fly into Australia. That's right, it's own citizens and permanent residents are restricted from boarding flights to their own home. Because of that airlines can't run a profit on flights to Australia and with it being so far away, airfares are through the roof. You put on a high price of an airfare, then a quarantine price, the cost of returning home is out of reach for a lot of people. For those that might even have the opportunity to get home, it's not a simple process either. For the record, we aren't all backpackers who refused to come home. Many of us had work and contracts overseas. With that, the opportunity to go home, even for a bit, is further complicated because we would need to take at least two-three weeks off from work just to go home. Something that I certainly can't afford to do. I do have two weeks vacation a year, but if I took it, I would spend all of it in a hotel quarantine then would have to fly back to work.


Now it could be possible that my mother and father could fly here couldn't they and see me? They are retired, they could spend a few days with me and we could be together for Christmas. As they aren't working two weeks in Quarantine on return wouldn't be too much for them. My father hates the heat and thus both himself and my mother do travel to the Northern Hemisphere during the Christmas period. For my mother it's to avoid the mass family gatherings so that would be the perfect opportunity for them to see me as I can't fly to see them, right? Nope, the Australian Government won't even allow their citizens to leave, even if they are prepared to pay for the Quarantine or high airfares to get out and back. It's time to find a new way that allows freedom of movement again, albeit with precautions. We have people who are stuck having to work overseas, then if god forbid something happens in their family (such as medical or death) then they have to spend two weeks in Quarantine before they are even able to see their families during this time.


To the Australian Government, this is a joke and needs to change. I have previously posted that other countries are doing processes that would permit either no or reduced quarantine periods because you have a number of COVID negative tests prior to your flight and then a couple on arrival. If all are negative then you are basically out and free within a day or two after arrival. Australia it's time to do this, not just for international arrivals, but sadly even your own State and Territory restrictions. Your decisions have done nothing more but abandon your own citizens and keep families apart. It's about robbing people of their own personal choices, it needs to change.


So what's the second song that's hitting home right now?


As I mention, for my folks and myself, yes we are quite lucky and our situation isn't as disastrous compared to others. Nevertheless, I sure we would all love to see each other in person for Christmas. With this opportunity taken from us, I'm sure that although my parents and I won't really admit it this song will certainly sum up our Christmas to a degree. As my father is a fan of Dino, let's go with his rendition.

On a positive note, I just want to take this opportunity to wish everyone a wonderful and safe Christmas and let's hope that 2021 sees a return to common sense, the reuniting of families and our ways of life.


Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


Ash


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