In spite of this, I had quite a wobbly week, choking up and getting all teary-eyed at the oddest of moments and usually at the most inconsequential of things.
Perhaps it was the juxtaposition of the glorious weather with what is slowly but surely being considered as our new normal that hit me in the solar plexus? I mean, how can it be Spring when everything else is awry and nothing rhymes? Things are so surreal that I keep expecting to wake up from this nightmare any moment.
But wobbles are just that, brief moments in time when our hearts can no longer cope with all the pent-up emotions, and we have to let off steam. Then we pick ourselves up and carry on. Never did the famous Keep Calm and Carry On slogan ring so true.
So, I tried to keep calm and carried on wearing my most colourful outfits. And while the first bit wasn't always a success, I'd like to think I nailed the second with my choice of outfits!
If I remember correctly - sorry, head's a bit of a jumble too - this is what I was wearing on Monday before last.
The outfit was built around the exuberantly dotted aubergine blouse, which I was determined to wear as a pick-me up. From its print, I picked orange for my cardigan, and yellow for the flower corsage pinned to it, as well as my belt and tights. Both orange and yellow were combined in my vintage beaded necklace. The one that always reminds me of bubble gum balls!
My skirt is vintage St. Michael, and is part of a suit, with a short-sleeved belted jacket. See here.
Picking a final colour from the blouse's dots, I added a white poodle brooch. Isn't he the cutest?
I hadn't been out of the office during my lunch breaks for over a week but, after feeling particularly wretched on Wednesday morning, I needed to clear my head and thus walked to Antwerp's botanical garden again.
The sky was an almost surreal blue, contrasting most picturesquely with the sunlit buildings, with Antwerp's famous Art Deco skyscraper (top left) dwarfing my office building, which you can just catch a glimpse of in the bottom right corner.
Making a slight detour through some traffic free shopping streets spacious enough for social distancing, I passed a covered gallery of shops (bottom right) where weirdly enough music is gently tinkling from the sound system all day even though all the shops are closed.
Where the traffic free streets end, I happened to look up and spot an umbrella hanging from a branch of a tree.
Dodging the traffic on the busy street I'd arrived at, I briefly retraced my steps, then walked past the magnificent neoclassical Bourla theatre (top right), completed in 1834 and topped with statues of Apollo and the nine muses.
Then, after rounding a corner, the decorative stone balustrade bordering the botanical garden soon came into view. Topped by a series of ornate lampposts, it offers a bird's eye view of the sunken garden, a haven of serenity away from the chaos.
Dating back from 1825, the botanical garden was used for medical purposes for the adjacent St.Elisabeth hospital. Legend has it that its little pond was used to keep bloodsuckers which they used at the hospital.
The garden, affectionately known as Den Botaniek, has been managed by the city of Antwerp since 1926 and in 1950 it was listed as a valuable landscape for the city of Antwerp and its inhabitants.
There was no sign of the tulip with my name on it, but at least the label made me smile!
Not that you'd notice, as I was wearing my scarf doubling as a makeshift face mask.
Despite its small size, the botanical garden still houses an incredible 2000 plant species, with some artwork dotted among them.
Feeling refreshed and in a galaxy of my own, courtesy of the starry night print of my dress, we did some outfit photos in the garden after work.
Thanks to our heavy duty pruning, I was able to stand in the small paved sunken area in the middle of our garden, where even Phoebe had trouble getting into before, as it had become completely overgrown.
I was actually waiting for a spaceship to pick me up and zoom me over to a virus free planet, but none came so I gave up in the end.
The dress is vintage and once again it's one that's been in my wardrobe forever but hadn't been worn for a silly amount of time. It is made of a swishy rayon fabric, made even more swishier because of its lining.
I wore Monday's orange cardigan on top to which I clipped another one of my flower corsages.
While we were out in the garden, I had the opportunity to take a rare portrait of Her Majesty in which she isn't a blur or has just closed her eyes. You can see the little chink in her right ear, made when she was picked up and neutered as a one-year-old stray, before she was adopted by us.
Another view of my dress, without the cardigan this time. The squishy blue belt with its rectangular buckle is an old retail buy, as is the turquoise birds-in-flight brooch. The mottled blue beaded necklace is one of a plethora picked up in a long-gone vintage shop.
Putting on my Smiling Princess act here, but this can change in the blink of an eye.
When I went for a little walk during next day's lunch break and came across this heartbreaking scene in front of a cavalry group sculpture around the corner from my office, tears once again blurred my eyes, making me cut my walk short and flee back inside.
Today was my last working day of the week, so I'll probably have a bit more time for blogging now.
I promise to return shortly with photos of another, more successful, lunch break walk.
Until then, stay safe my friends xxx