My blog friend Janie Jones has posted about what things are like for her during these difficult times, after she read Sarsm’s post, and has asked that we bloggers all let each other know how we are getting on in our various parts of the world.
The short answer is that I am fine and well. The virus is most dangerous to elderly people with an underlying medical condition. Since I am sixty-two and have a pacemaker, this does not apply to me. I know by personal experience that sixty-two is not elderly, something that I didn’t know when I was thirty-two, and while anatomically speaking a pacemaker is about as underlying as you can get, it was put in twelve years ago for a condition that I had then and has had little usage since.
The underlying medical condition for this is called denial, and fortunately I have it only in mild form, so I am taking precautions. I’m into my eighth day at home, since our company is encouraging us all to work from home until March 31st at least. The good thing about this is that I get to stay in bed for an extra two hours every day. That is the only good thing.
Sorry, it isn’t. The other good thing is being able to swear loudly about colleagues. Upon receipt of a particularly moronic email yesterday I was able to yell “oh, you are such a gobshite!” at the screen instead of seething quietly as I would have had to do when surrounded by workmates.
Other than that, though, I’m working on a laptop screen instead of two monitors, everything loads up more slowly than it would in the office, and the silence is almost oppressive. Thus time drags, and my mind wanders.
I think about the survivalists who have cabins in the mountains stocked with essentials like half-a-ton of tinned pork and twenty-four rifles, in preparation for life after The End Of The World As We Know It. I wonder if our current experience is making them realise just how dreadful that life will be, and that when the day does come maybe they should simply join the zombies.
I wonder what will happen when border closures mean a shortage of some foods from abroad, such as French cheese, German beer and Kentucky fried chicken.
I wonder what my hair will look like as time goes on. Given its colour and general unruliness I’m guessing I’m going to look like Beethoven. A follow-on thought is that at least I don’t have to worry about my roots showing, a panicky thought that is slowly dawning on about half of the world.
I wonder can I ever write seriously about anything.
No man is an island, except of course for the Isle of Man, and I miss people. We have email, and Skype meetings, but it’s nowhere near the same.
Mrs Tin is here, of course, and great girl that she is she has not yet thrown anything at me as I stomp into and out of the kitchen ten times a day making tea. Other than her, though, I haven’t spoken live to a person for over a week. Yesterday was warm and sunny, so we stood in the front garden for the last ten minutes of my lunch break. A number of people went by, as a laneway into the next housing estate runs by the side of our house, but none of them looked toward us as they passed. Mrs Tin says that it is the same in our supermarket, that everyone scurries around gazing straight ahead. It’s as if they think it’s the Medusavirus, transmitted by looking into someone’s eyes.
Overall, though, I know that I am lucky. I am well, when so many aren’t. I can work from home, when so may can’t. I am in no danger of losing my job, when so many have.
To all of you who come here, I hope you are well and keep well. You are my friends too, indeed ones that I’ve had more practice at engaging with remotely.
Take care of yourselves, all of you.