The Quarantimes Week 4: Life During a Pandemic

April 8th, 2020

Yesterday morning I called in an order to the Guilford Country Store, which is our awesome little local store that has nearly everything you might need in a pandemic: milk, beer, Easter candy, and kombucha. But not, sadly, Lysol. They took my order over the phone, bagged it up, and left it on the back porch. I drove up in my Subie, donned rubber gloves, and put the bag in my car. This is our version of Instacart.

I wish from the beginning I had thought to do this, but from now on I am going to start keeping track of daily highs and lows. Yesterday’s low was letting a complete stranger from the country store pick out Easter candy for my kids. Also a high, to be fair, because I didn’t have to go into a box store. I have had way, way lower lows than this recently.

High: Last night while pulling epsom salts out from under the sink for a bath, I found a nearly full bottle of Lysol that’s been in there for years. Pre-pandemic I used Lysol only when a stomach bug made its way through our household, so I had completely forgotten about this bottle. It was like Christmas. 

Other random thoughts: It occurred to me today that people who are not essential workers and still refuse to stay home during a pandemic are the new anti vaxxers: they are protected by herd immunity, to some extent. However, in this case, time will tell whether they’re actually protected or, more likely, extending the stay-at-home order for the rest of us. They’re also putting their own lives in danger, which is a little bit their problem, but then again, not really, since when they get sick and must be hospitalized, our already greatly strained medical resources get further stretched. 

I loathe the cowboy mentality of these types of people, but at the same time, I realize how hard this order must be for a lot of folks. It’s hard for me, and it honestly really shouldn’t be. I am an introvert who has always enjoyed working from home, with shy identical twins who prefer each other’s company anyway. 

We are not truly quarantined, though, since my husband is an essential worker. I have spent many nights lying awake trying to formulate a plan for when he gets sick or is blatantly exposed. I read the social rants of outliers in my circles who think it’s all just a media hoax and refuse to be told what to do. I wonder if, like me, they know people who’ve already lost family members, friends, and personal heroes. I wonder if they care. 

Then again, you cannot force others to care about humanity, and you certainly can’t force people to prioritize the health of humans over their own financial welfare. It’s a mess. We’re all doing our best, but in the bastardized words of the great George Orwell, some of us are doing our best better than others.

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What I’m reading:

Quite dismayed when I opened up my New Yorker this week and found nothing but stories about COVID. But this one was actually pretty amusing: Some Coronavirus Guidelines

What I’m watching:

Videos of cats peeing in toilets and squirrels drinking out of straws with my daughters. 

Also just started turning into the John Krasinski YouTube show “Some Goods News” which is really hitting the spot right now.

What I’m listening to:

On the Fresh Air podcast, an interview with  Atlantic science writer Ed Yong: Masks, Vaccines & How COVID-19 Might End.

What I’m doing:

Zoom yoga class with Christy Brown, a longtime friend of mine from Northern California whose skill as a teacher is deep and her classes exquisite. She is offering vinyasa slow flow and yin yoga classes on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday evenings. Please join me, info here


What I’m eating:

This olive oil cake was pretty danged delicious. 


What I’m working on:

For Box, I ghostwrote this piece by Paul Chapman, Global CIO: How to accelerate a secure shift to 100% remote work


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One Response to “The Quarantimes Week 4: Life During a Pandemic”

  1. Thomas Mason says:

    Olive oil cake recipe please?

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