The Important Things in Life

You are Going to Die!


It’s the elephant in the room for all of us…. Sure as you are alive now and reading these words, like the rest of us, you are going to die.

We can postpone it with good habits, fitness programs, diets etc., but we have to face the reality of our mortality.

The last two years of COVID have been a stark reminder of our limited lifetimes and through lock-downs, working from home, home-schooling and other restrictions, to start considering what is important in our lives.

Australia has been fortunate compared to other parts of the world with relatively few cases, but we have all had the possibility of death hanging over us for two years. Life as we used to know it has changed forever and taken away many of the things that we simply took for granted before we lost them.

The “Important” things in life are now different and I wonder if they will continue to influence us as normal life kicks in.

Have we Learnt any Useful Lessons?


Anti-vaxxers and conspiracy theorists have now identified themselves. Apparently tracing down to about 20 individuals inventing this rubbish and spreading it via their on-line blogs. And making money from the advertising that comes when you have lots of believers as followers.

Those protesters demanding individual’s “rights” to avoid jabs and masks, threatening societies’ health and spreading a pandemic to innocents are a worrying trend.

This group seems to forget that with “rights” come “responsibilities”.

If you want no jab and willing to get full blown Covid that is your right and it is your “responsibility” to stay away from others happy to be vaccinated. Not gather in crowds to protest!

If Covid were a weapon deliberately used, it’s level of destruction of lives, lifestyles and economies would have been higher than any other conflict since WW2.

According to on-line statistics there have been 240million confirmed cases and 4.8million people have died worldwide. Australia has had 130,000confirmed cases and 1,448 deaths since the start of the pandemic. In the UK 139,000 have died and this continues with 124deaths in one week in October.



We used to take our families and partners for granted and family events as a sort of reluctant duty ….. until we were banned from attending them. The weddings, christenings, birthdays and funerals that make up the procession of events, that are all a part of life, until you are the one in the box!

How sad for the families not to celebrate and grieve the life and loss of someone dear to them, together.

There were a few weeks where we didn’t see our son and daughter or grandchildren and it was delightful to be able to hug them again.

What about our life partners, wives and husbands …. Could you have survived lockdown without them? You may well have irritated each other, at times, but imagine being alone, as many people young and old have been.  I wouldn’t last a week.

As for parents and their children doing home schooling, I think that it will have created a whole lot more respect and sympathy for the schoolteachers out there.

Plus I am willing to bet that the kids will be happy to swop their reluctant parents and siblings for real teachers and their friends at school


Have you noticed people you meet in the regular course of life have become more friendly? I have!

I think the “We’re all in this together” idea seems to have caught on. And I really think we appreciate those old friends we have, that much more now. Those phone call and emails and jokey videos helped us to stay sane.


In France lifestyle and work-life balance is regarded as important and a 35hour week legislated. Part of that is the traditional French two-hour lunch break between 12noon and 2pm and many businesses, except those serving lunch, actually close down during that time.

Is it possible that we in Australia might start looking at our own lifestyle changes, sparked perhaps by our experience of working from home and taking time out for coffee and biscuits in the garden, a leisurely lunch, afternoon nap or just smelling the flowers. While still getting the jobs done without a boss looking over your shoulder!

Maybe some exercise like a swim, walking or jogging, maybe a visit to the gym, is the lifestyle change that would suit you. Just not a hurried sandwich or coffee at your desk while you continue working on the screen.

We are all going to die, so enjoying life right now, like the French people do, makes good sense.


Are you thinking the same way about work as you used to before the pandemic?

First having a job, when many people in the hospitality industry, the entertainment industry and baristas and café owners, lost theirs was pretty important and the Job Keeper payment and concept literally brilliant. Keeping employees and employers linked financially was the key. But for businesses that took the money and despite not losing either staff or profits, during Covid, have not returned it, I am appalled.

It was “Job Keeper” not “Money Keeper”! Give it back!

Covid has also made us think about the people with jobs that matter. Those people who had to soldier on despite personal risks – with flimsy protection equipment, for long hours. The doctors, nurses, ambulance people, paramedics dealing with very sick and infectious people and at the time no vaccine protection. True heroes!

And what about those other health workers and cleaners in retirement villages and nursing homes, overworked, underpaid and unrecognised. Have we forgotten them, now vaccination has lowered our risks? Maybe our government should lead the way with wage increases and recognition before the next pandemic reminds us of their contribution.

When you have experienced working from home the prospect of resuming commuting is daunting. The projections and research are pointing at a 30% plus decline in city commuter numbers. Working largely on-line and making a sea-change or tree-change looks very attractive. A good price for your house in suburbia makes it more tempting!

I for one don’t want work to go back to pre-pandemic norms. They were not good anyway.


When you think about it, how much stuff do you need in your life?

Does constantly striving for more of the things that advertisers say you need, make you happy?

Do you need to commit yourself to paying off a new car when the old one’s going fine and you have paid out the loan? Has the lockdown given you the chance to reassess your spending patterns and life in general.

Think about it, “Have you been working harder and harder to buy things you don’t need, to impress people you don’t care about?” We live in an uncertain world and someone wise once said that there is nothing so soft to fall back on as hard cash!

Think about it, “Have you been working harder and harder to buy things you don’t need, to impress people you don’t care about?” We live in an uncertain world and someone wise once said that there is nothing so soft to fall back on as hard cash!

We seem to live in a throw-away society and our biggest problem seems to be the production of waste for land-fills. That’s over consumption!


When you see images of our unique little blue planet from space, you have to wonder why our moronic leaders seem to have trouble with working together to manage the place for the benefit of all it’s inhabitants.

The birds, animals, insects, plants and microscopic life, all interdependent and part of an ecosystem trying to balance itself despite the reckless intervention and exploitation of humans and soulless corporations.

Global warming is the current focus with governments trying to convince the gullible public that net zero emissions is achievable or will have any effect in reversing the damage done.

It is a mental stretch to imagine that currently shrinking glaciers will suddenly fill up with ice as soon as net zero occurs, or that climate change will reduce wild weather events and the sea level start dropping around the Pacific Islands.

Tell them they are dreaming!


The western world alone spends US$361 Billion on armaments every year. That’s about A$700Billion. Heaven knows what that represents in equipment, planes, tanks, boats, aircraft carriers, airfields etc.

Clearly, we are talking Trillions and we haven’t included ICBM’s and Nuclear devices or the Chinese and Russian army and navy.

What if this vast resource was set to work cleaning up the planet. Helping poor countries to feed themselves and gain the benefits of the overabundant resources grown or manufactured elsewhere.


It seems to me that the armaments industry needs a new business model – not encouraging war and fear to sell weapons of mass destruction but using those production facilities, scientists and assets to fix the problems and help to manage the earth.

Maybe Australia could make a start and build a “First Responder” army of Firies, SES Experts, Rescue Equipment, Water Bombers and Medics to go anywhere in the world to help at short notice!

Our own army is already trained and their resources and discipline could be applied to any emergency situation. Has to beat buying some submarines for delivery in 20 years time!

BIG PHARMACY - New Business Model Needed!

Profiting from pandemics is the business model of big pharmacy companies like Pfizer. We really can’t expect anything else from large corporation whose job is to make money for their shareholders. I read that a Pfizer Covid jab was costing us $40, while the Astro-Zeneca one made here costs $4 per jab.

That is exploitation!


Who Owns the Country? The Citizens?

Seems like our politicians are starting to promote their “Growth for growth’s sake!” economic model again, by talking up bringing in more skilled migrants. Robbing poor countries of qualified doctors, nurses and others for a short-term boost in GDP.

Let’s get really democratic with measurements of well-being and lifestyle like France – good holidays – 2 hour lunches and a relaxed lifestyle. And while we are about it, let us ban all political donations and lobbyists immediately.


The little blue planet floating through space is vulnerable and we as individual humans have such a short span of life to enjoy living in it.

I guess that each one of us can start a process of change for the better by simply deciding to enjoy each day we receive and give thanks for being alive.

Let us hug our children, celebrate with our families, smile at and chat to strangers and do our individual bits to make our part of the world special.

Ian Godbold

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