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This month Taiob Ali (blog|twitter) asks the community about the ways to handle the challenging 2020. See the #132 #tsql2sday invitation. Here is my story.


Just before the virus outbreak, I have changed the job (the main reason was to spend more time with the family and work from home more often). The change required the move, so around mid-Feb 2020 we have moved to the new place and 3 weeks later we went for holidays in Poland (just three weeks). I remember saying to my co-workers in the office: “See you in three weeks… maybe”.

While on holiday, visiting families, the Polish government decided to ban all commercial flights, so we had to decide whether to pack within a day and rush back to the UK or stay and see what happens.

We’ve stayed… for 5 more months.


That decision of course triggered a set of actions, as we did not know how long it is going to be, but I am not going to go into details about it. Let’s stay focused on the positive things (except the test results of course).

More family time

Since we ended up working from home, we were spending more time together. I missed that in 2019, so I was quite happy to get that opportunity this year.

Since both our families live in Poland we have been also given a chance to see them more often since our move a few years ago. That was also very positive.

After coming back to the UK, we are exploring a new city which is actually very interesting. Learning all about Southampton, Titanic, Spitfires and Jane Austen. Watching big cruise ships and container ships from the window became our new family sport. Do not know who is more excited 18 months old boy or his parents.

That is also a very good time to observe our little one growing and achieving milestones. I could never remember any child books or rhyme when I was a kid, now, it is not a problem to tell you a story about monkey taking shower or a worm going for a trip.

Personal development

Since there was more time to spend (commute, lunch at home) and more time with the family already, I could spend some time on thinking about ideas for the blog and actually writing posts.

There was also time for online learning and since the in-person conferences have been converted to online ones there were more opportunities to learn from home.


The very first person has visited us after coming back was Rob, who helped me setting up the new work area in the new home. Besides that, we are in touch with other friends via multiple online platforms. I have not seen my colleagues from the office since that last day before holidays (March) but I feel like we have this special bond anyway.


Having a real breakfast and lunch/dinner/tea is also an advantage comparing to the old times where it was either fast food or quick bites. I guess cooking and baking will not disappear in the future, it will evolve to make stuff more interesting when we are back in the office.

One would think that with lockdowns and self-isolation we would stay home, but we still were able to enjoy being outside. It was either the parks in Southampton or the beautiful city of Krakow (and pistachio ice cream) or just the countryside in hometown.

We also have time in the evenings to catch up on some favourites TV shows or movies.


Overall, despite this being a very hard and difficult time for many we are coping quite well. Trying to look at the positive side of things and do not worry too much about the things we cannot control. The world has changed, it might be permanent in some cases, or just temporary for some more time, but we need to adapt to it. That’s our recipe + opportunities to smile.

Thank you,