Test your English – A Time to Do Without …

Text: Joanne Edwards

Fotos: MasterSergeant - stock.adobe.com, Porträt: www.kaindl-hoenig.com

I remember seeing in the New Year, watching the fireworks over the city and thinking that this was going to be a very exciting year…in a positive way. Just the sound 2020 had such a positive ring to it. How wrong could I have been. None of us could have known what this awful year would have in store for us. If we had known, we would not have danced so happily to The Blue Danube Waltz. On Friday 13th March, I remember sitting in my favourite restaurant with a friend of mine, when the chef and owner came and told us that the restaurant had to close at 2pm as the corona virus was spreading like wildfire. I, like many others, started to panic as the government warned us that there would have to be an immediate lockdown. I, like many others, drove to the nearest supermarket to stock up on food and, of course, toilet rolls. I was shocked to find out that I was too late. When I arrived at the supermarket, most of the shelves were bare. There were only a few chocolate Easter bunnies on the shelf, so I took those… just in case. Fortunately, there was a very friendly shop assistant who informed us that the shelves would be full again by the following day. To my knowledge, this has never happened again in Austria and I must congratulate the supermarkets and shops that made sure that we didn‘t have to go without anything. However, as the situation with the corona virus started to get worse, and all over the world thousands of people were becoming infected and dying of it, we soon realised that we would have to do without a lot of things that we normally take for granted. Things like meeting family and friends and hugging each other, going to hotels, restaurants and bars or just living a carefree life…the one we had before corona came to visit. Somehow, even though we had to socially distance from each other, the situation brought us closer together. We were all in the same boat and we had to manage the situation as best as we could. We have got used to wearing masks and disinfecting our hands whenever possible. Most of us have got used to the idea that we will have to do without holidays abroad and appreciate the beauty that we have on our own doorstep… which is not difficult, if you live in Salzburg. We will have to do without concerts and theatre visits, Christmas parties and the wonderful Christmas markets that make this season so special. The corona virus is one of the most difficult things that we have ever had to face and it is nowhere near over. The bad weather is here and the days are getting shorter, so it is easy for us to feel sorry for ourselves and wonder what the future will bring. It is important to stay positive and maybe think what we can do to help others. Like the story of Captain Tom, a 100-year-old British war veteran, who decided to raise money for the NHS by completing 100 laps of his large garden. He only wanted to raise £1,000 for his local hospital to help corona patients, but he ended up raising £33 million and many old or disabled people have followed suit. I sincerely hope that by the time you are reading this, things have changed for the better and 2021 will be a great year to look back on.

A Time to Do Without – eine Zeit für Verzicht
to see in the New Year – das neue Jahr begrüßen
a positive ring – ein guter Klang
how wrong could I have been – wie konnte ich mich so irren
awful – schrecklich
to have in store – auf Lager haben
if we had known – hätten wir gewusst
the chef – der Chefkoch
to spread like wildfire – sich wie ein Lauffeuer verbreiten
the government – die Regierung
to stock up on sth. – sich mit etw. eindecken
the shelves were bare – die Regale waren leer
Easter bunnies – Osterhasen
just in case – nur für den Fall
fortunately – glücklicherweise
shop assistant – Verkäufer/in
to my knowledge – meines Wissens

to go without sth. – auf etw. verzichten
to take for granted – für selbstverständlich nehmen
to hug each other – einander umarmen
carefree life – sorgenfreies Leben
somehow – irgendwie
to get used to sth. – sich an etw. gewöhnen
to appreciate – schätzen
on our own doorstep – vor unserer Haustür
to face sth. – vor etw. stehen
nowhere near over – bei weitem nicht vorbei
to feel sorry for ourselves – uns selbst bedauern
to wonder – sich fragen
to raise money – Geld sammeln
NHS – der britische Gesundheitsdienst
to complete 100 laps – hundert Runden drehen
to follow suit – dem Beispiel folgen
to look back on – zurückschauen auf