Mary Beth Writes

I just checked the comments on my website. I get a few wacko ones most days that are in Greek or Russian, or are porno invites. I delete them. Part of the shtick when running a website outside the hosted sites.

And here, right here on a Friday evening, is this good comment from one of you, 

(She’s referring to Diary #34)   Somehow I missed this back in April, and so today, July 3, am catching up with reading, and find this so interesting that I HAVE to comment even though I’m not sure anyone can see it. OK, so now we have free testing pretty much widely available, on demand, no doctor’s orders needed, and you can go every few days! Masks, gloves, sanitizers are all available. We’ve had two-and-a-half months for experts to learn and advise us. Clearly-explained guidelines are in place for some businesses, and for institutions like hospitals and schools, and for general living and socializing, but we’re still in a pretty huge mess. I blame human nature, anti-science people, selfish “king-babies”, and laziness.

I have been in several conversations this week. I get to chat for an hour or two with people I trust and enjoy (Zoom, texting, outside) and we can talk about anything – and what do we talk about?

Covid.

Oh, we talk about social injustice and justice, and kids, and what someone read, and my daughter’s new kitten, and a few other things. But the conversation always eventually circles back to Covid. Always.

We have all stretched our ideas of how to live. Most everyone I know has expanded their “safety circle” just a little to include kids, grandkids, and maybe a few trusted friends. We have witnessed how people are conducting themselves so by now we have a better sense of who we can sit outside on a deck with, and who, well, not so much.

We know how our days go. If I ask when folks are going to bed and when they are getting up, most have answers. How are they getting their groceries? They know. How are they getting haircuts and walking the dog and conducting meetings from home? People have developed quarantine routines.

Then we pay attention to the news; watching the tragedy and chaos of escalating cases, packed ER’s, emergency workers who are exhausted, frustrated, jaded, and still slogging through. There still is no national plan. Some institutions are still scrambling for PPE. Parents and teachers are being told what will and won’t happen with their kids, and those adults are frustrated and astonished that no one has a reasonable solution about how to educate our kids without killing their teachers.

Tonight is the evening of the 3rd of July. Len is streaming “The Bureau”. I’m here writing. Just talked to the daughter with the kitten. In the morning I’m walking with friends, Len will ride his bike, and our ice cream attachment is in the freezer now so Len and I can make some tomorrow.

Here we are, bit by bit, day by day, reinventing our lives. I suppose this is the most American thing we do. Respond to the moment. Try to support our friends and neighbors. Edge a little closer to our best people. Make something good to eat. Try to be smart. Try to be kind.

Happy Independence Day. 

 

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Comments

Amen! Very well said. Happy 4th!

Thanks for your gift of words, for crystallizing these past tumultuous months. My girls and I were face-timing yesterday and I said it's like we are living a rural life of earlier centuries. Living with just those in our home, our "safety circle" as you so aptly coin. My 2 health care working kids just happen to still live with me. Neither has seen Grandma and Grandpa since Christmas. But we are going to visit tomorrow to churn the homemade ice cream maker just like you guys, play croquet, and stay at least 10 ft away from 85 year olds! If it rains, we stay home. I will carry my bleach spray bottle and wipe down anything we touch, as is now second nature, as we reinvent a summer holiday with 5 of us instead of 20.

Awesome to hear your thoughts tonight!
Mary Beth's picture

I needed someone else's thoughts to bounce off - thank you!

I was invited to a 4th of July party a few days ago which I politely declined do to the rise in Covid case's here and the fact that I'm not ready to join the world again... That and the fact that I can't afford to bring that into my close circle of friends and partner.( 5 ) the one exception to that being Mister "B" who simply needed to be added after our month's of social distancing and the technology we used for months... Well worth the time, effort and wait we went through in dating in the *Covid Age*... Human touch can only be put off for so long before you just say "Enough Already" and take that leap of faith... We still do alot of the other stuff all week long but that one day we get to spend together, to go on bike rides or cook together, or just looking at each other without a screen is priceless... I cut my hair and my Covid Beard because I said this isn't going to end soon and my B-Day month was here and I wasn't going to have a beard for that... I here the constant story's from my and Mr "B's" sister's who are both on the front lines of this epidemic and without a national plan in place they see no end in sight... On those happy thoughts !!HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA!!
Leonard's picture

I don't even remember when we passed Quarantine Diary #100. I never thought we'd get this far.

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Quarantine Diary #150 8/11/2020 Taking a Break

I’m depressed. How about you?  I’m not the kind of depressed where I should call a doctor. I’m more “Michelle Obama depressed.”  Things feel stuck, wrong, and getting worse. There’s the pandemic and the feeble, chaotic response to it. There’s racial strife. When, if ever, will the police police themselves? Teachers and kids are being thrown back into schools like spaghetti thrown against a wall - to see who will stick? There’s the angry self-entitled idiocy of too many people.

Quarantine Diary #142 Swimming Lessons

“It's a good idea to begin at the bottom in everything except in learning to swim.” Unknown author

I was well into my 40’s when I realized that one doesn’t have to wait for perfect weather if one wants to go into the water. 

Quarantine Diary #141 8/5/2020 "Red Dust"

I just finished reading “Red Dust – A Path Through China” by Ma Jain.  It is a remarkable book that asks more questions than it answers.

Ma Jain was born in the 50’s and grew up grew up very poor in a small Chinese city. He remembers when his mother would simmer stones for dinner so that the neighbors would see her cooking and not realize how poor they were.  (A whole different take on the children’s tale “Stone Soup.") The violent and terrifying Cultural Revolution that Chinese citizens lived through is over but memories of it are in everyone’s minds.

Quarantine Diary #140 7/31/2020 Wishing you a Merry Quarantine Weekend

When I’m in a certain mood I love how-to articles – and I’m in that mood right now. I think it happens at the intersection of reasonable weather and Friday ... when happiness still seems possible.

I googled “How to have a nice weekend in the time of Covid” and guess what? There are no Wiki-How articles on how to be happy in a pandemic.

Let’s invent this right here, right now.

Quarantine Diary #134 Written while sweating …

My best coping skill for appalling weather is to show it who is boss. 30 below?  Cool. Let me put on all my clothes plus a hat down to my eyebrows and another one up to my glasses, and I’ll go out there.

Quarantine Diary #131 7/23/2020 "Becoming Labrador"

Yesterday I forgot to write about a movie we watched which I think many of you might like to watch, also.  We’ve been talking here about what one can stand to read and watch these days when our spirits are stressed and anxious.

I thought I wanted to reprise some of our Canada travels.  FYI, if you’ve traveled in a place you loved, put that place into your streaming service Search window, find some great or mediocre documentaries about that place, and revisit your memories.  It’s fun.

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