Thursday, May 14, 2020

...the days of swine and roses... the days of wine and COVID...

I believe today is my 61st day sheltering in place/ not leaving home except for a few short socially-distanced trips. 

While I’m anxious about everyone’s health and safety, I am not going crazy. I adore my fella more than ever and we haven’t fought. I still like being at home, especially in this home with this amazing yard. I do not miss going out. I cannot imagine every going into a grocery store again. 

My husband and I have watched now three groups of baby birds. I walk in great stretches of 4-5 miles without seeing anyone. The garden is better than ever. 

This year, I’m growing vegetables.

We know that we are fortunate. We have our jobs and my fella already worked from home. We have access to grocery delivery. My brother, who works in the hospitality and sporting industry, has been out of work since September. He had one decent prospect right before COVID 19 closed everything down in Miami. It’s been hard for him to access food, safe outdoor areas, especially after the public parks closed. 

We have remained home because we’re rule followers, self-diagnosed germaphobes (or at least I am), super cautious individuals. My neighbors had 30 kids over for “a coronavirus party” my fella heard them say. My mother was finally so bored that she went to Walmart and had a heart attack… literally. We had discussed this. If anything happens, they won’t let us in the hospitals. Information and access will be limited. It was. My dad waited outside of the hospital hoping he would learn something until some nurses recognized that he had some seriously low blood sugar. He’s diabetic. This didn’t go well. He refused to call me because I would have told him to go home. They just don’t want to remain at home.

We’re not bored. In fact, I’m busier than ever with work, two summer courses that begin next week that I should be focusing on right now. I have a book chapter coming out next week. I had an article accepted for publication last week… or was it the week before. Time does have a way of blurring. I’m attending virtual conferences and meetings about cemeteries and adolescent literature. I’m participating in The Rosenbach’s Sundays with Dracula. World Dracula Day is in just a few weeks. I cook creative meals. I sit with my husband and talk. We laugh and smile. I remain anxious about everyone’s health and safety. I’m an anxious person. That’s who I am.

I miss walking in the cemeteries but fear that I’ll have to use a restroom, which are currently closed. Plus, I try to keep the city cemeteries for those in the city who don’t have the space to roam.

I hope my university doesn’t reopen to face-to-face courses in the fall. I’m certified to teach online and I have enjoyed the creativity of developing my summer course on Dark Tourism as an online one. I cannot imagine having to return to public transportation. I carried Clorox wipes before any of this. But I don’t need Clorox wipes in the garden.

The garden grows and hugs us in for summer. I move bulbs around. I order plants online from small greeneries. I focus more on nature than on media. I channel the words of my therapist. I light Halloween candles to soak in fall scents. I sip tea. 

There is so much wintering in this spring.


  1. Good grief, you and I are two peas in a pod, my friend. We've been doing exactly the same thing, except that we don't have parents to worry about. My heart goes out to you! And we don't have a garden. BLAH. I'm going stir crazy without a yard or access to green space. We have plenty of parks around us, but in the good weather everyone is out wandering ... and not social distancing. Ed and I just had a conversation about being rule followers and the frustration of being the only rule followers in our neighborhood. It's enough to drive us crazy.

    Sending love and hugs.

    1. Thanks, Franny. I've been thinking about you a great deal especially when it comes to outdoor space. I know how you enjoy camping and being with nature.

      I'm such a rule follower and it pisses me off that others aren't following along. It helps knowing that it isn't targeted to one region. I have friends in Georgia who are just as freaked out about *opening up* as us.

  2. OMG what is it about Walmart and heart attacks! That's where my husband had his last fall while we were visiting our daughter. Jeez Louise, how frightening to have medical issues in these times. I can't even imagine.

    I've now discovered all the online shops where I can purchase fabric, wool and everything else I'd ever need that I should have looked for when we first moved out here - other than grocery delivery, which I doubt we'll ever see. Still, a twice monthly trip to town for parking lot grocery pickup is likely the route I'll continue to take even after this is all over.

    I'm finally getting all those little projects done I've been putting off for years! I really miss our library though. Spending way too much on books I don't even enjoy ticks me off. Stay safe and happy, you two!

    1. Can I just say how much I enjoy your monthly give-away posts! Not that I just want stuff but it helps me reflect on what I actually do miss. Right now, it's smells of the outside world-- old bookstores, wooded cemeteries, apothecary shops. Sigh.

    2. Awwww, thanks! I had a moment there yesterday when I announced what I'd found for the winner where I thought ... what the hell am I doing? Who the hell wants the crap out of my basement? But it is nice to think about the things we really do miss, and it's not as much as I thought. The simpler things, for sure. Antique stores. Books. Same as you, pretty much. lol

  3. I'm truly sorry about your mom's health. How is she presently fairing?

    Like yourselves, we're holding up well all things considered so far and have been extremely fortunate to have not yet been directly hit head on by the pandemic. Of course that could change at the drop of a hat, but in this moment, we are safe and virus-free (as our our family members).

    We went into very strict self-isolation in mid-March and have only gone out once so far, though will need to do so again soon to replenish necessary food, medicines, etc. The utmost of safety precautions and least amount of time possible in public will be employed again, of course. We're not taking any risks and definitely wouldn't want to unwittingly spread this devastating illness to anyone else, if we were carrying it.

    I nodded my head often throughout your heartfelt post and share some of your same hopes. As much as certain aspects of pre-covid life are longed for, there are scads of others that I too could happily, healthily, and appreciatively do without or that I believe we'd be better of with different versions of.

    May you guys continue to be extremely safe and well as spring tumbles into summer, my lovely friend.

    Autumn Zenith 🧡 Witchcrafted Life

    1. Autumn, thanks for asking. She's doing better but oh families are complicated.

      I've been reflecting more and more on what I miss about the outside world and what I hope never returns. I haven't always been the best with setting firm boundaries. I'm working on it.