Corona-cation, Day 4: We’re beginning to get stir crazy. We began self-quarantining after last Friday, and have not left our home since then. Our links to the outside world are through virtual connections, and, fortunately, technology allows us to maintain at least some semblance of normalcy. While my daughter is missing school, she isn’t missing homework. And I am able to continue working thru telework.
Our biggest issue so far was running out of toilet paper. Why the run on such a necessary staple of civilized society is beyond me, since there really isn’t any logical connection between COVID-19 and toilet paper with which I am aware, but the shelves are empty at every store I went to over the past week. Thank goodness we found a fairly inexpensive option online. It’s not as soft as our regular brand, but these are not regular times. And if you’re regular, you need this stuff, anyway.
Our concern is focused mainly on my parents and my in-laws. Reports say that their age group is most at risk, particularly with additional health issues, such as my mother’s diabetes and mom-in-law’s asthma. They are reporting price gouging on necessary medications, which should be a crime. Over-the-counter meds are ten to a hundred times their regular cost, in some cases.
We’re thankful for modern entertainment conveniences, such as streaming movies, online games, and e-books. There’s no shortage of options. That said, we are getting bored already. We’ve taken to cleaning out our closets and paring down unneeded clothes that will be donated.
A dedicated sports fan, I am suffering from withdrawal due to the postponement and cancellation of pretty much all spectator sports. Hockey was nearing the end of the season and the beginning of the Stanley Cup playoffs, something I look forward to every spring. March Madness is now March Mad-less with all college basketball tournaments cancelled. And, the worst news, the start of baseball season is being delayed indefinitely. As a diehard baseball fan, I find this news depressing. I pass the time by doing fantasy baseball mock drafts.
We bought what we figured would be an adequate amount of food for an extended period of hunkering down, but we’re running through it much more quickly than expected. Snacking out of boredom is a real thing, unfortunately. Thank goodness for food delivery, but that puts us at some risk because what we’re eating is being prepared and delivered by unknown hands. We must have some level of trust that they are taking precautions just like us. But it may necessitate a store run, which means leaving the safety of our home. Something we’ll have to consider…
Even the churches are shutting down, but church is more than just a building or a gathering of believers. We can worship virtually in today's world, and connect with others through streaming, video, audio, and just about any other modern techniques. And this is the time when we need community, particularly with the anxiety many are feeling. Prayer seems to be the best thing we can do.
Nothing is normal right now. My parents likened this to 2002, when the DC Snipers had the entire region on lockdown, and everyone took extra precautions when going out to the stores, or getting their cars gassed up, or stayed home, out of fear that the snipers might have them in their cross-hairs. If nothing else, this is going to be one of those major life events so outside the norm that everyone is going to remember where they were and what they were doing, like 9/11, or the Challenger explosion, or the Kennedy assassination.
This is unprecedented. There are only a few times in my life when I felt out of control and/or fearful of something going on in the world. In 1987, I was in a car accident in which my grandparents were killed, in a car I was driving, when we were hit from behind by a tractor trailer. In 1990, it was the beginning of the Persian Gulf War, which had me watching CNN every free moment, expecting to be drafted into the war. In 2001, it was 9/11. In 2002, it was the DC Snipers. In 2004, it was the death of my wife. Now this. I don’t think I’m overstating it.
These sure are some crazy times, but I'm glad to know that my family is safe and feeling well. It's likely inevitable that some of us will end up getting the COVID-19 virus, but I pray the it's effects will be minimal, at least to our health. Impacts to just about everything else are already here.
If you find a good deal on some toilet paper, drop me a line.
Have a great evening, and please stay safe. And wash your hands...you just may be saving a life.