COVID-19 threw a spanner in the works of so many plans last year.
Many struggled to cope with the shifting sands of our new social landscape, as evidenced by a spike in demand for mental health services.
But for others, like Canberran Joash Taufa'ahau, the closed doors shifted his view towards a new realm of possibilities not considered previously; he was determined to make lemonade from life's lemons.
As a teenager he dreamed of hiking the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) - a 4000km stretch of coast along the west coast of the United States from the Mexican to Canadian border.
2020 was the year he was determined to make it happen.
But as the pandemic unfolded it soon became an impossible dream.
Never one to let an obstacle stand in the way of a personal challenge, Joash reset his sights for home soil instead.
The Bicentennial National Trail instantly appealed - a 5000km trek along historic stock and horse routes up and down the east coast.
"But when COVID closed state borders that wasn't going to work either," he said.
So I knew I needed to find something I could do in this state. I needed something long - something that would test me and make me feel uncomfortable.
"I kept staring at the coastline on a map - it's about 1000km, so only a quarter of the length of the PCT. But I thought maybe if I used the coastal route as a trial and error, I could eventually walk the whole perimeter of NSW."
Joash said while the core intention of the walk is about his own personal growth, he was keen to also make it bigger than himself.
"I knew I wanted to fundraise for a cause I believed in," he said.
"I worked in three different restaurants when I was a kid and I saw the amount of waste that was thrown away."
Over five million tonnes of food ends up as landfill in Australia each year - enough to fill 9,000 Olympic sized swimming pools.
The wastefulness of our society shocked him, coming from the Solomon Islands where food is sacred and generally isn't thrown away.
So he decided to dedicate his adventure to OzHarvest - the largest food rescue organisation in the country.
Since 2004, OzHarvest has collected commercial food excess and delivered it to charities supporting people in need. They currently rescue over 180 tonnes of food a week and deliver it to more than 1300 charities.
Joash began his coastal trek at the Tweed Heads State Border Marker on the Tuesday before Christmas, armed with nothing more than a small backpack and a one-man tent.
Pumped with adrenaline, he was eager to hike the 70-or-so kilometres to Byron Bay in one fell swoop - the longest distance he'd ever attempted.
And he would have made it too, had he not miscalculated the route and neglected the existence of the Brunswick River.
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After deciding to call it a day instead of walk the extra five km diversion to cross, Joash was faced with a night he'll never forget.
Alone and with only a pocket knife to defend himself should the need arise, he was confronted by a series of shadowy figures and misadventures which defeated any chance of sleep.
It was certainly a baptism of fire. But I guess it was better to rip the bandaid off. And it's certainly given me some perspective and empathy about people who sleep rough.Joash Taufa'ahau
Joash said the journey so far has been "hot, sweaty and uncomfortable". "It's like getting slapped in the face but you can't slap back - it's just a matter of adapting."
Two days ago he faced another unexpected stretch of water just north of Coffs Harbour on NSW's North Coast: "They must have taken the photo on Google Maps at low tide".
A friendly kayaker helped him cross with his possessions, saving him a 10 kilometre diversion.
But it hasn't all been a trial by ordeal. There have been some magical moments too.
"Not too many people can say they've walked on every beach from the Tweed to Coffs. And the feeling you get standing atop some of those headlands - there's nothing else like it," he said.
"And yesterday as I was walking into Nambucca a lady drove past me twice. The second time around she said 'Oh you're still on the road? When you get to the rest stop let me buy you dinner' and she did. Everyone's been so lovely - I've got nothing bad to say about Nambucca."
This morning he packed up his tent at the Nambucca Service Centre and set off for Macksville, also on NSW's North Coast.
If you see Joash out walking through our shire, stop and say hi. Or better yet, you could support his Hike For Hunger campaign.
"Pledge a donation to a certain distance and only donate once I've reached that distance as I trek along. Every single $1 I raise will enable OzHarvest to deliver 2 meals to vulnerable Australians," he said.
Even if you don't bump into Joash in the next few days, there's every likelihood you might hear from this eloquent and charismatic young social entrepreneur some time in the future.
"I would love to get into politics one day. And I guess this journey right now is to prove that I'm capable of putting words into action," he said.
"Right now I'm still young and nave about the world - these moments are all building blocks to a better understanding."
I'd vote for him.