Newsletter | Nov/Dec 2020

Joanne Chow Winship

Qurantine Time

by Cameron White

If the pandemic had to happen, I’m glad it happened when I am older. It would have been much more difficult to stomach as a younger, active person. I am still very active, but I’m also very comfortable with the slower pace of life that has come with COVID. I enjoy a lot of solitude and am not as stressed out.
At the time I retired, 4 years ago, the pace of life in business and personal life had gotten so much faster than it used to be 40 years prior, when I was a young professional working in architecture. With the onset of the pandemic, everything slowed down. Now everything is much more open, but I still feel that a more comfortable pace of life is remaining, at least for me. A comfortable pace is much less stressful and more satisfying. You have time to stop for a moment and enjoy the outdoors, and other people.
My husband, Paul Deirup, and I have been mostly staying home since March. We face time often with our daughter in New York and her family, including 2 boys. Having FaceTime get togethers with them is not a great substitute for a hug. I tried to plan a trip to visit them this fall, but it just seems too dangerous. My son and daughter-in-law, in Benicia, are expecting a baby boy in January! We get together with them when we can, in the backyard. Hopefully, soon I’ll be able to at least look at a new baby, if not hold him. I’m glad they’re close by.
My saving grace: keeping busy. I take a lot of dance classes every week, online and in person outdoors.

My saving grace: keeping busy. I take a lot of dance classes every week, online and in person outdoors. I’m taking online jazz piano lessons since and have improved by keeping up the weekly lessons and practice. I continue to be very active with ACE Mentoring, a nationwide program to introduce high school students to architecture, construction and engineering. I do this as a way to give back to the community. We’re going all virtual this year, and I’m on a team creating shared content for our SF Affiliate. I also joined the Board of Directors and I lead the Oakland team. (OWA/DP has generously contributed to ACE scholarships for several years! Thank you!) I’m also active in Toastmasters, in a small and supportive club which continues to engage me in improving my communication skills. When another day begins, sunny and bright, I look forward to it. Gratefulness is my mantra.

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