My name’s João, I’m writing from the far end of Europe. This last year has been interesting, to say the least. It affected me, I had to look for a job outside my area, my copywriting business wasn’t making ends meet. But that’s ok, I like to think that hard times bring blessings of their own if you know where to look.

I took this time to get better at my craft. I kept learning, kept practicing, and I developed it into a part-time job. When it comes to me, I was doing great, considering the circumstances. I dealt with my problems and coped with the pandemic the best way I could. But my country wasn’t, and it still isn’t, doing well with all this. I’ll try not to get too political, but I’ll explain what’s going on here.

People in Portugal are happy, easy-going people. They like to appreciate the small things in life because most of them don’t have a lot. Most of our elders have been through a lot, from a fascist regime to colonial wars. But still, our country isn’t in the best shape politically, far from it! The current government it’s corrupt. It neglected our healthcare system for far too long. Our healthcare system was neglected a lot and it was a disaster. A lot of people died due to poor conditions, which they might have survived. And our leader’s response: Strict lockdown measures, for months on end. Basically, our country it’s in a totalitarian regime at the moment.

It’s been hard, no doubt. But I tried to look at it positively and find some good. Well, they’ve shown their true colors, and I hope people know that we cannot count on them. Also, this is making us stronger as a people, so there’s the silver lining. I’ve never seen so much cooperation in this country. Our youth is bringing food and care to the elders in isolation. Citizens are helping each other, trading goods, checking on people, making sure we’re at least going forward in life.

I honestly could not be more proud of our people. In the face of disaster, they held on. They’ve shown tenacity and persistence. They’ve shown they know what’s best for our country by not collapsing it economically and socially with rebellion. They are helping each other as they’ve never done before. That’s why I believe we’ll get through this alright, and in a few years, we will reap the rewards of our struggles. That’s where I see the silver lining in turmoil.