By Daisy Game, Entertainment Sub-Editor
Spring has finally sprung and with it brought a variety of Studio Ghibli-esque landscapes to peer wistfully at through the window. So, for something to watch in quarantine, here is the perfect schedule to make sure you have a Ghibli of a day...
1. Roll out of bed like Arrietty (The Secret World of Arrietty, 2010)
Try getting up on the wrong side of the bed when your bedroom looks this good: Arrietty takes the house plant aesthetic to another level. Ferns, berries and bluebells... it’s all very lovely indeed. So, sit up – *have a streeeeetch* – take it all in.
Maybe spend a minute or two admiring that button you bagged on your last foraging session - shiny - or the yellow topped pin - also shiny - which you recently upcycled into a nifty little scabbard! Life is good, and your problems are small … ba-dum-chhhh! Just pitter patter on over to your vanity - snap unruly hair back with a spare binder clip – and you’re good to go.
2. Don’t forget to eat breakfast with Calcifer (Howl’s Moving Castle, 2004)
It’s time for the breakfast of kings, with the king of open-hearth-living companions. Go grab the bacon and eggs - /any food item which can be successfully drowned in a large quantity of yummy crisp-ifying oil - and pop it all on the hob for a good sizzle session. Don’t forget to offer Calcifer a rasher or two in the meantime – it’s hungry work getting this castle to shift it day in day out, and he won’t appreciate it if you don’t organise his snacks.
If for some reason your fire doesn’t seem to be very chatty this morning - bit weird, but strange times and all that - then maybe give him some time to cool off. It’ll give you a moment to retrieve the fruits of your fry up labours, and munch on the chow. Maybe Cal will feel better tomorrow.
No matter what you’ve got kicking about the house - beads, old curtains, old cereal box - it’ll be enough to get funky
3. Get crafty like Sophie (Howl’s Moving Castle)
Now that you’re all fuelled up – it’s time to get creative. Gather your materials, and whip up a hat worthy of its place on one of Sophie’s stands. No matter what you’ve got kicking about the house - beads, old curtains, old cereal box – it’ll be enough to get funky.
Let your inner - mad - hatter out. Just remember – you need to make this accessory extra cool because Howl said he might finally get around to giving Zoom a go later, and you know you’re going to want to look good for that. They say hats distract from the wrinkles.
4. Time to get some fresh air like: insert your choice of character
You’ve been cooped up all morning – it’s been great, you really feel like you got those creative juices flowing - but now’s the time to get out and about for a bit. You’ve actually got a couple of options here.
If you’re lucky enough to have a garden – then get out there and use it! Maybe pick a nice bunch of flowers like Taeko (Only Yesterday, 1991). Or you could dedicate some time to tidying up any unidentified airships which might have dropped in the night, just like the good robot gardener you know you are (The Castle in the Sky, 1986). It’s important to keep on top of those everyday chores when trying to keep a ship-shape outside space.
No garden? No worries! Go and find a puddle to jump in like Totoro (Totoro, 1988) There are bound to be a few splashing about on the pavements, and it definitely counts as exercise. *TOP-TIP*: make sure to bring your spare umbrella! Totoro can be a bit absentminded, and he’ll likely have forgotten his.
Not one for the whole puddles-jumping-shebang? Try hopping on your bike like Shun (From Up on Poppy Hill, 2011). This one works best if you happen to live in a nice flat location. If you’re still in Bristol or some other bizarrely hilly place - then it might be time to reassess your fondness of the humble puddle?
It’s important to keep on top of those everyday chores when trying to keep a ship-shape outside space
6. Back to the crafting board with Jiro (The Wind Rises, 2014)
You’ve been out on your bike/in the garden/stamping in a puddle somewhere for a good while now - time to take it easy for a bit. Get your hands on some scrap paper, and whip up the perfect paper aeroplane like Jiro (The Wind Rises).
Now go and throw it at an unsuspecting family member or housemate - they’ll really love you for your playful spirit and can-do attitude, and definitely won’t tell you they’re never speaking to you again after lockdown lifts.
7. Time to snack like Ponyo (Ponyo, 2006)
You’ve done a lot, and now you’re probably a bit peckish - it’s time for our final Ghibli themed activity of the day: dinner. Might I suggest the Ponyo special: a nice ham sandwich? If you want to keep it extra Ponyo, ditch the slices and just focus on the hammy filling for now. You can always go and see if Calcifer’s feeling a bit perkier this evening and might fancy helping you out with the bread side of things.
Featured: IMDb / Studio Ghibli
Which of these Ghibli films takes your fancy for your first quarantine watch?