Hiding out

I’ve been following @Laddie’s blog, Test, Guess and Go for some time now. Laddie, with her husband, splits her year between the Twin Cities and the Arizona desert. Here’s her latest blog entry.

I tried to respond to her on the blog-site but the technology gods wouldn’t let me. So I copied and pasted my response here:

Thanks for this post, Laddie. It captures the physical beauty of another emerging Spring, yet tinged by the foreboding sense of what this might mean to our network of family and friends.

I am in a much different setting than you, perched 12 stories above an urban street scene with snow-capped Mt. St. Helens 50 miles distant. The street, one normally bustling with streetcars, pedestrians, and plenty of traffic, including cars, bicycles, electric scooters and skateboards, is unnaturally quiet. Now, even during “rush hour,” the street is mostly empty, occasionally punctuated by an almost empty streetcar, like the setting of a dystopian sci-fi novel.

I feel that pit in my stomach, too. I have six siblings and the youngest is 63. Most of them have some chronic health condition and none of us would end up on the desirable side of a frightening ICU triage decision. This steels my resolve to stay well and sustains my daily precautions. We can’t control fate and must accept that many aspects of life are beyond our control.

While I’m not a religious person, I’m gaining a new appreciation that embracing an attitude that everything will be okay in the end is a powerful tonic to help ease our fears. Taking that leap of faith is the premise of all religion. There’s no good reason that us non-religious types can’t do that, too.

I joined my daughter, her boyfriend and his daughter at dinner last night using FaceTime. It was a surprisingly satisfying interaction, one I hadn’t used before. Since I live alone, except for my dog, this video connection mitigates my aloneness.

My dog, Norm’s companionship at this time is a blessing that I’m thankful for every day. He will be 12 next month and reminds me of how short all our lives are. I know that you lost your dog recently; I’m amazed at how valuable these creatures are to humans.

Be well, Laddie! My thoughts are with you.

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Hi @Terry4, I’m in a very similar living situation to you, living in a high-rise apartment in the middle of a major city. My apartment faces the back ally, so I don’t get to see how quiet the main streets are, but the city does feel very quiet. Every night at 7:00 PM, though, people go out on their balconies and cheer, bang pots and pans, whistle, and shout encouragement. It’s the one moment in the day when the city comes alive with hundreds of people. Its purpose is to honour front-line healthcare workers, but I think it also boosts everyone’s morale.

What a great idea to FaceTime over dinner! I’ve been calling family and friends much more than usual. A few days ago we had a video chat meeting with family across three countries (Canada, USA, Australia), which was very neat. We will be doing that again soon, I think.

Over the past few days, I’ve settled into a new normal. I feel grateful that I’m an introvert and am quite content to spend days on end indoors. I have a plan to leave my apartment only once a week to take out garbage, recycling, and compost, do some loads of laundry, and go to the grocery store hours set aside for vulnerable populations (I plan to do this all in the very early morning before others have woken up). I feel so grateful for the situation I’m in and that I’m not facing some of the hardships so many others face.

I do feel a glimmer of hope in recent days that Canada may be able to get through this without overwhelming our healthcare system. But it’s a very tenuous hope that could change to dread tomorrow. I worry for my family and friends in the USA, because they do not seem to be coping as well with the situation.

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Post video of that, @Jen. How fun is that?!?!?!

@Laddie, we got 60 degrees up here yesterday. Snow up North tonight. But, I think this early Spring and warm weather may help bring the virus under better control as well as anything we can do as humans. Fingers crossed.

P.S. It seems like ADA has something in the works. They are busy targeting some resources at MN. Stay safe.

Here’s a video from the Vancouver Sun about it. It really is something to look forward to each day.

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Wow, Vancouver is spectacular. Brought a tear to my eye.

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Thank-you for that, Jen. It shows just how good humans can be, honoring their heroes while cheering and connecting in the face of real danger!

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Yes, very nice to hear we have 2 nurses in our family. Worry about them. Nancy50

@Terry4 Thanks for the lovely comment and I am not sure what your problems were posting the comment on the blog. I find that some things in my life work great on Safari. But other things work better with Chrome.

Enjoy every day with Norm. I still miss Abby a lot while I appreciate having one less thing to worry about as we figure out our plans for the next couple of days, weeks, and months.

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My daughter works at Vancouver General, and she and her colleagues hear the pots and pans every night at 7pm shift change. It means a lot to them

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Thanks for this, @Jim_in_Calgary! I love this! I am so glad the healthcare workers hear the noise and know it’s meant for them. :heart:

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I just participated in Portland, banging a pot with a wooden spoon. It was nice to feel the resonance of all the other people in my neighborhood also hiding out from the virus. There was more noise than I expected!

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Glad it’s happening in your city too, @Terry4!

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Norm is my first dog. He reminds me every day that “now” is all we ever have. When he engages me with his eyes, he is 100% present in the moment, connected with me. I know Abby occupied a special place in your heart. She was a great dog!

By the way, thinking about my inability to post my comment on your blog, I think it was because I tried to insert blank lines between paragraphs. I noticed that all the other comments had no line breaks.

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Norm and me, Christmas 2018, so long ago.

Spring emerges in downtown Portland, Oregon with traffic eerily absent.
21 March 2020

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