The clocks go back this weekend in the UK which is a sign that winter is upon us. This is going to be a more challenging winter than we have ever faced. It isn’t due to the weather, suffering from seasonal affected disorder, or the battle to create the perfect Christmas, it is because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
When we celebrated the last Christmas period no-one can have anticipated that we would be facing restrictions that mean we are likely to be celebrating away from friends and family. Worse than that we could find ourselves having Zoom Christmas dinner just to feel that we are together.
As the restrictions first arrived at the end of March there was much more to look forward to; the summer, long warm days, the anticipation that there may be some form of holidays allowed, and the hope that by the end of 2020 this would all be over. Lockdown at that point was hard but no-where near as hard as it is feeling as the cold, dreary winter nights are looming upon us.
We are going to need to dig deep and find a way through the winter months. I have been reading about how countries such as Finland, Norway and others manage through what are often very short winter days. Many of us will have read a bit about Hygge and how it signifies a cozy and comfortable life in Denmark. But there is also the Norwegian concept of Koselig. It is often translated as cosy but means so much more.
The winters and nights are long particularly in the north of Norway so people realise they have to seize the day. They need to enjoy the snow when it is ready for skiing. They need to enjoy wearing comfortable and warm clothes. They need to make their homes as inviting as possible with warm fires, beautiful candlelight and comforting baking. There is so much more to this but the point seems clear.
When we are turning the clocks back, losing summer time, and preparing for winter we can see this is a great opportunity to get cosy and comfortable. We can find that sweater that we love and face the day with coat, hat, scarf and gloves keeping us warm. There are always things every day that we can love, enjoy and look forward to. It is not going to be easy, the way ahead is hard but perhaps winter 2020 needs to be more Koselig for us all.