Mill Creek Beacon - Your Hometown News Source

By SharonAnn Hamilton
Traveler, Pet- and House Sitter, Author 

The Virus of Fear - Q&A


Series: Coronavirus | Story 18

Last updated 3/23/2020 at 3:58pm

SharonAnn Hamilton prepares to board a train in a nearly empty station in England, a sign of the worldwide shutdown during the coronavirus pandemic.

Q: How does it feel to be barreling across England and France at 186 MPH and through the Chunnel at 100 MPH?

SharonAnn – Scary and thrilling, no seat belts, great lunch, helpful and charming stewards. When the train must come to a stop, all the stuff on the tables, the bottles of water, glasses case and phone all go flying. Now we know.

Q: Because of the coronavirus, what did you notice at the train station in London?

SharonAnn – It was as busy as our January trip to the station to do a trial run for our connections. (We came to check the times of the bus arriving from our last assignment, the tube from Victoria to St. Pancras, the waiting line into the Eurostar area.) In the two hours we were there, we saw two people in masks. "Keep Calm and Carry On" message holds at this point.

Q: Have you changed any of your plans, or have your hosts had to change their plans?

SharonAnn – We've been hearing about CV outbreaks for a couple of weeks. We started kicking around Plan B and Plan C in case our assignments didn't work out, so we weren't caught flat-footed. Our dream has been to pet and house-sit in Italy. We had booked a gig for two months, in the North of Italy.

But alas, they closed the borders. Our host is in Greece, building a new home, but when we communicated, she was practical about the change. We'd been talking about this for at least six months. She also has Plan B and Plan C in place. At this time in our world, we must act like a bird in a windstorm, able to pivot, so we don't crash.

Q: What is your quarantine plan if you are still in France?

SharonAnn – Shall we suffer baguettes, wine, and cheese for the next season? We have several sets of friends who live here and with whom we could easily stay for several months, even if we cannot find pet-sitting gigs.

Our current Plan A is to pet sit in Lyon, France, for a month, Zürich, Switzerland, for three weeks, then back to France for two months before heading back to the Seattle area for July and August.

UPDATE Friday 13th of March. In face of the latest information, we have decided to stay put. Our hosts' vacation was canceled, but since they have two complete apartments, they asked us to stay until it's safe to move. So, we will.

Q: Are you afraid you'll get sick?

SharonAnn – We advocate for perspective in our own lives. Obesity, flu and mosquitos kill more people each day, by far more than this virus. Most people who get ill, recover, just like the annual flu.

We first pray for our Lord to place a hedge of protection against illness around us while we travel. Next, we sanitize many times during our trips. Then we are very aware of our surroundings and move away from people who cough-95% of those who catch the CV recover, and staying calm benefits us all.

Q: Have you stockpiled food or medicine?

@[email protected] – Haha! We are traveling. We have a carry-on and a backpack each. When we arrive at our next housesit, we'll probably pick up some staples, but since we are there only one month, it won't be much.

We are fortunate to be in France where there are food markets from local farms year-round. We don't depend upon groceries that come from other countries, so we feel comfortable being here. In any case, if we were in our Edmonds home base in the Pacific Northwest, we'd be in the epicenter of the outbreak in the US, so we feel safer here.

Q: What is the Virus of Fear?

SharonAnn – It is hard not to follow the herd. Our rational mind says, wait and analyze before taking action, but our emotional mind says, "Run, run run."We see on the news that people all over are wearing masks, for example, even in the face of the information that they are counterproductive, even harmful IF YOU ARE NOT SICK.

Our friends in the States tell us of toilet paper greed, people stockpiling enough for a year when they can. We say, "Really?" Fear is contagious. People think if they have supplies, they will be in control of their world.

It is not so. Is hand sanitizer the 100% prevention against getting the coronavirus? Yet, many have neglected to get flu shots, and we know from reports flu kills hundreds of thousands of people worldwide every year. The regular flu is not dramatic enough news, so people ignore it.

Q: Is there a cure for the Virus of Fear?

SharonAnn – When your heart is right with your Higher Power, you can find trust. Trust is the antidote to fear. Trust and fear cannot exist at the same time within us. We choose. We choose fear, or we choose trust.

Q: You left in August 2019 on this extended traveling honeymoon with Dan. Knowing what you know now, would you decide differently?

SharonAnn – We've discussed this, and in a heartbeat, the answer is we would do exactly as we are doing. Of course, we are concerned about our loved ones in this time of crisis. We campaign for staying calm and planning as much as possible.

We enjoy every new exploration, we have made new friends for life, and there is nothing we would change about our activities and decisions. We are grateful and feel blessed every single day. This is the great mystery and adventure of life.

Find out more: SharonAnn and Dan's latest makeyourvisionhappen on the blog and Facebook by the same name. SharonAnn & Dan offer "How to" coaching services for future global travelers. Find out how to prepare your life for traveling in "The Secret to RIGHTsizing" (a guide to redesigning your life), which can be pre-ordered. Register for your copy.


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