I don’t know about you, but I’m experiencing a serious case of cabin fever. I have good days and bad days, but today I’m restless and irritable. While I love where I live and where I work, and I realize I’m pretty stinkin’ lucky to have a job and a home to go to these days, I am heartily sick of these being the only windows I get to look out of.
I long to check into a hotel and gaze out a window upon heretofore unseen vistas. I want to peek into foreign apartments across cobblestone alleys. I want to be a voyeur. I want to see street life and identify new daily routines. I want to observe the comings and goings of people I do not know.
Travel always has been my reason for being, but COVID-19 has put paid to that. There are days when I feel like I’m in prison. Anybody who thinks that this new reality isn’t going to be with us for at least a few more years is deluded. So if I’m on the verge of pulling my hair out now, I can’t even imagine the creature who will be gazing back at me from the mirror 6, 8, or 10 months from now.
But there’s really no point in struggling against these shackles. They’re here to stay for the foreseeable future. But for now, at least, I refuse to completely give up and get fetal. No. I’ve still got an inner life, and it is still free to roam.
So imagine my utter joy when I heard about a website called window-swap.com. It’s a brilliant concept. People all over the world submit 10 minute videos of the view from their windows. It gives you a virtual change of scenery at the very least.
While writing this post, I have gazed at a courtyard in Milan, with a mesmerizing whirligig in the foreground. From there I went to Bangalore and watched two beautiful dogs wandering around on a lushly planted balcony while listening to cars tooting their horns and birds chirping their chirps. Then I went to Sauerland, Germany and watched the rain fall on a flowery back yard with a beautiful, elaborate outdoor fireplace. In Brooklyn, I had a stunning view of the Brooklyn Bridge, but that view was rivaled by another stunning water/bridge view in South Queensferry, Scotland.
I suspect that I’ll be visiting this site often. And although I am not very tech-savvy, I vow to figure out how to submit views of my own. Perhaps one from work of my gorgeous waterway when it’s busy with boat traffic, or one of my drawbridge opening, and maybe my back yard with my dogs running around. We’ll see.
This website can feel a little bittersweet. So many of us are relegated to one view right now, which can become monotonous even if that view is spectacular. Now, more than ever, the grass seems to be greener in other people’s yards, and window-swap is making it possible to see this for yourself.
It’s also a great source of comfort. It brings tears to my eyes. It’s a relief, seeing that there are still other places out there. On days like today, it’s helping me hang onto my sanity.
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