Comfort.

Joe left for work at midnight of the wee hours of Wednesday morning to drive to his work boat way up the river. He had a stop almost eight hours out if the way to pick up his deck hand. He got on the boat at a lock and immediately set to work on four broken ties in the high river in the midst of crew change. He finally slept at about 5:30 PM. Flights are being avoided. He had a travel pack I made of sanitizer, gloves, spray, wipes, alcohol wipes and then a pack to have on board with Tylenol, more alcohol wipes, thermometer, etc. Even though the boat provides.


In the drive he loaded up on foods to avoid stops and touch points. At gas stations he will wear gloves, dispose before touching the car door handle then sanitizer.
Many little steps to remember and to take.
All life saving. And easily forgotten. One step forgotten is all it can take.


It’s a little scary.


He and I have long taken precautions and taken this seriously since first word from China. We knew it would hit. We knew the numbers were bad. We knew it would take people and also economy. We knew all of it was bad. We knew it would not contain. We knew in the way our world runs and in the timing of many holidays, schools out, and other reasons ranging from business and pleasure that the timing couldn’t have been worse.


We knew it would hit our coasts and had likely long already done so. Our hearts sank for Italy. Their already shaky economy. Their older population.


So many people can’t hide from it or protect themselves from it. Homeless who have no way to wash their hands while privileged problems stocked up on toilet paper.
In one way it’s so sightless Joe easily forgot about it at times and would mention going somewhere. Doing a particular something. I’d say “It’s closed because of the virus”. I’ve said those words so many times in two weeks. Other places that should have been closed, weren’t.



We drove nearly empty highways and streets. Past strip malls and Ross department store and mall parking lots… empty. Empty and lonely looking. And then… A Home Depot… Their parking lot packed. Each and every one we passed.
The people. Stir crazy. Not caring. Temporarily forgetting about an invisible deadly Germ. Picking up their tomato plants. Racking 3,000 steps at least on their FitBits. The employees greatful for jobs, but a look of fear in their eyes.



As close to the front lines of the virus as any ER nurse. Exposed by about ten extra degrees even with the shortages of protection in hospitals as travel morgues of no shortage roll out to New York to collect and keep cold the bodies we can’t properly bury… And the virus? People who died alone without their loved ones.



Over all this doesn’t hurt our daily lives much, me and Joe. It stunted some travel. But nothing essential. We have a few ships are we traveling to see but in this economy big ships for sale aren’t going anywhere. And if we lose on a particular chance we have yet to see in person, so be it…


It’s not the virus by itself. We can travel very safely. It’s not the stay in places being set. We can travel essentially. But now states are setting quarantines to enter or if you have entered from or to particular places… And this will grow. We saw that coming. And well… It’s just better not to.



Joe may at most stay on the boat longer and at worse, get stuck off the boat losing a few months of work. And we are OK with that, though hopefully not.



I work from home and my work hasn’t slowed at the moment. In some aspects it’s busier. And staying in place I am expanding on the ability to garden like crazy (patio garden). And I’m in a place I can greet nature and never a person.



We have food. We have safe places. We are fine. And likely our health will be too even in the possibility of getting the virus. We are doing our best not to be spreaders. Spreaders has a big staircase it climbs…we spread means that a person gets ill and loses work. A person gets ill and dies and this keeps going on and on like wildfire and keeps our lives shut down, the economy closed… Not just here, an entire country. Not just an entire country, the entire world. The less we spread, the faster this does. Sit tight. Stay put. Save lives. Save life.



Even safe and fine and reletively untouched by this… It’s a time of history and my breath still holds…. I fear Joe being ill. I fear him spreading to the coworker who has a premie immune compromised child. I fear long term affects of illness. I fear the articles of long term lung damage and brain damage. I fear losing my Joe even though he seems healthy and solid as a rock. I fear being so sick I can’t walk my dog. I fear Joe being unable to come home for one reason or another in this. I fear for how long this will go on. I fear for my favorite little indie coffeeshop and bookshops I’ve watched and entered and spent much time in, some only babies and on such shaky ground for a young business without such an entire world economic crushing situation. Was the great depression quite this world wide reached and affecting? Can we come back? How long will this go on? How long can we? I plant more seeds.
Walk in a Home Depot and life seems so normal…

The virus forgotten.



But life is so very not normal right now.
I have such privilege and all of my comforts and still so many fears.
I sit with my comfort. I am long a comfort seeker… Coffee. I wear comforts… Comfortable blue jeans and boyfriends cardigan. I watch the birds through my window in the sunshine and listen to their  unworried song. The black berries are growing. It is spring. A time of happiness. I feel the morning sun on my face… That… I have that comfort.



I will dip my hands in cool soil and I will walk my dog in nature and I will relish my regular seclusion that is no different than other times. I am so far buying books and coffee beans and such online from favorite indie shops. Making donations. Supporting places I hope to keep alive, even if with a limp.



I will write. I have lost nothing. I have given up little (archives and libraries mainly, coffeeshop days to work in, a nice lunch out, an occasional social interaction).
We hide from the dangers we can not see. But they are there. I am thankful I have my comfortable home to be in… Some do not. This will pass. Stay home so that less souls pass with it. Stay home to end this sooner. Stay home to not keep an economy crumbling longer than need be. Stay home to not cause death of a loved one or of a stranger whose last breath you will never even know you caused.



And when we emerge… Be a kinder better human. Know what fear you had… Know others held a fear a hundred times higher than that. Know what comforts you had… Know that some have no comforts… Are sleeping in drawn squares on Nevada pavement. Know you had the ability to wash your hands, clean your home, stock your cabinets, care for and keep your home and family safe… And know that others never had that chance. Know that your health was and is strong… Know that someone else’s is not. Know how the fear of losing a months pay felt or feeling some stimulus help felt… Know others live in that fear every single day of their lives. That knotted pain in your gut of fear? It will unravel for you… For others it will not. For some it’s never been about the virus… The virus is only an entry of a battle they can not win. They enter a battle without protective gear or weapon. They have no choices. So be kinder. Help. Understand. Because your life changed for a moment. Or…you were blessed and it didn’t. But don’t ignore another humans plight.

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