Shelter in place, part 4

Spring-Blossom

We had to return to Portland for prescription refills and specialty dog food. Since our dogs both had pancreatitis in the past year, it’s important we keep their diets regimented, and I was almost out of insulin. This was a simple drive between homes. When we left for the beach house, we had planned to stay for a week. A lot changed in that week. There was no funny business on our part. We didn’t break any rules. It’s just the three of us, me, Blue Eyes, and The Peacemaker. We travel in a group and are as careful as possible. As we drove up the highway from the beach house, we saw that the mandate for all the state parks to close was no joke. The highway entrances are all barricaded by cement blocks. The popular town of Cannon Beach is literally closed to non-residents. The town is closed!

As far as I know, most of the United States has been in a lock down situation for more than a week now. This means staying at home unless for groceries, medication, or medical care for those of us who are non-essential. Our Brooklyn son is in the middle of the worst of it. He’s so stressed out. They haven’t left their apartment for days. They are having essentials delivered and then with masks and gloves are removing everything from its original packaging and throwing out all containers before bringing anything into their apartment. No joke.

Yesterday The Peacemaker and I were getting pretty stir crazy. We decided to check out some new pickle ball courts nearby. We brought our rackets and balls just in case. Just in case there was no one else there and we could get in some decent outdoor exercise. The courts are locked up until April 28th. We were disappointed, but the drive was nice anyway. We had no intention of getting near anyone. We have no symptoms, but you can never be too careful. Since I have diabetes and am prone to pneumonia, Blue Eyes does any shopping that needs to be done. Ironically, despite his childhood illnesses, he has a much stronger immune system than I do. And The Peacemaker has an incredibly weak system. He was the only one in our household who contracted the H1N1 in 2009.

As I sit here, I am contemplating shutting down my Nextdoor account, as well as my Facebook account. Although there is a lot of good being spread, I just cannot stand the negative vibes. I have Facebook friends around the globe and although I understand this is a difficult and stressful time, what is with the competition? What is with the America bashing? Yes, we know we have an unfit President who is narcissistic and a blithering idiot most of the time. That is not US. That is not me or my family or anyone I know. Yes, we’ve all seen the pictures from earlier this month of the crowded beaches in Florida. Yes, people can be slow to react sometimes. Yes, there are idiots all over the world and it is incredibly difficult to manage 330 million people in a country like ours. Thankfully our states are reacting individually with governors and mayors and counties stepping up and enacting proper rules and guidelines, and they have been doing that for weeks. We’ve been in what some are calling “lock down” for a while now.

Clearly, we’re not a homogenous country. One of my favorite aspects of Japan is how cohesive it is. The people move en masse (although that is changing a bit with western influences) through life. Lots of people in a relatively small space, working together for a common good. America is much newer and not built on the same concepts. I have lived in Japan and actually thought about living in other more socially responsible countries. But I was born in America, it is where my family is, and for the most part, I love where I live. We have our faults, obviously, but this is definitely not the time to be comparing leadership or judging how others are handling this pandemic. This is a world issue, not a country issue.

I don’t want to get too specific as I’m not sure who all reads this blog, but I have a Canadian Facebook friend who has spent a great deal of time claiming to be compassionate but then absolutely slamming people for not being home right now, and for hoarding, and for just about any negative thing she can get her hands on. About a week ago she said something to the affect that she and her children could be off on spring break enjoying themselves, but they are following the rules and staying home. She’s constantly posting and reposting the memes about infecting someone’s grandma. She has been pretty blunt and rude about it all. She was then blasted with comments (she has A LOT of followers) who were actually stranded away from home, having been away when the news of the virus hit, and have been unable to return home. They’re scared and some are financially strapped, out of money, far from home. The issue is, when you throw out poison darts, you don’t always hit the enemy, sometimes you hit a friend. Yes, I could unfollow her or whatever, but it’s not just her.

Stores have started allotting the first hour of the day for elderly and more vulnerable shoppers. On Nextdoor yesterday a woman absolutely went OFF on non-elderly trying to horn in on the time that has been allotted for early morning shopping. Now this is a service that has just begun, maybe a couple days ago? Not everyone is aware. Plus, some of us more vulnerable people aren’t so elderly, but we’re still vulnerable. Immune disorders are rampant, so just because a shopper doesn’t have gray hair, doesn’t mean they aren’t in the protected group that this shopping experience is designated for. So along with the positive, there is a whole lot of negative too. Not sure I want to try and weed through it anymore. There are so many more productive things I could be doing.

On a more positive note, we have a lovely neighborhood. A few days ago an email went around suggesting everyone decorate a front facing window with hearts so that when we all make our walks around the neighborhood we have something beautiful to look at and to know we’re thinking lovingly of each other.

hanging-window-decorations2

This is truly a time to come together, not literally though (;)), and encourage people with kindness, not hate.

16 thoughts on “Shelter in place, part 4

  1. Late to this party. And full disclosure I’m Canadian – but not your friend on facebook! I think I would have to at least snooze that friend for awhile. For 24 years we lived in the “city” and had our year round cottage. We retired to the cottage 2 years ago. The local message boards on facebook have gone crazy over travel and cottage vs primary home. Check their drivers license and fine them. Well, ha. My cottage address was always primary residence/address on drivers license. Etc. But so many are absolute zealots on the no travel issue. Supply chain is stressed everywhere, hospitals are overloaded everywhere, no hospital had equipment, PPE for a pandemic. The “locals” say stay away, you can’t have my ventilator and blah blah. I’ve had trouble keeping my fingers off the keyboard. In this particular cottage country there would not be a hospital without “cottagers”. The donations to the hospital here are in the millions – by cottagers. Taxation (assessment actually) on waterfront property is very high – part of that assigned to hospitals. Not to mention the infrastructure those tax dollars support that would not be possible with just the year round base. Okay, I’m ranting now but some of the comments are so naive and short sighted and many of them do not understand the virus is already here and they are going out and about but figure anyone travelling (define travel!) is responsible for any spread here. Long winded way of saying some are off the charts panicking without being fully educated and is easy to place blame anywhere and everywhere. Thankfully none of my facebook friends cover politics. In that regard I would rather not know.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, DLH, I totally understand what you are saying. When people are stressed and don’t know what to do, emotions run high. Our beach house isn’t our primary home yet, we don’t even have a post box there, but the area has no facilities, no stores, gas stations, anything, and 70% of the homes are rentals. All rentals/motels/hotels are currently forbidden from operating. Our beach community is virtually empty at this point, so we don’t have the same issues as where you are, but I feel some of the same vibes when we visit Hawaii. There are lots of people there who don’t want to be part of the US anymore. They blame tourists for all the bad things around them and there is a lot of income disparity. I do understand, but wonder if they know what it would really be like without Federal dollars and tourism. It is a dilemma and I do get wanting things to be simpler.

      I ended up blocking my Canadian friend for now, and deleting my Nextdoor app. The friend lives in Toronto and when she posted the cartoon of the huge, ugly American tanks on the border, with an innocent little Canadian peacefully walking his dog on the Canadian side and some comment about how Canadians don’t want to cross the border anyway, I’d had it. She spends literally half her life in the US for various reasons including the company she works for is American. She just spent 3 weeks in December in NYC with her kids. Enough already. Yes, America has issues. We know that. People who live in America know what an incompetent, bully, buffoon, basically disgusting human being we have for a President. The majority of us did not vote for him. A little compassion would be nice. Unfortunately she wasn’t the only one. Lots of people post Trump parodies, memes, jokes, whatever every day, most of them aren’t American. Here we’re really trying to get through this with our sanity in tact, and I’m not talking about the pandemic. I’m talking about the Trump presidency.

      My allergies in the city have been so bad that I am actually now planning my escape to our beach house. We have plenty of gas and food and won’t have to stop or even use the grocery stores in the nearby towns, which are only doing delivery and curbside pick up at this point. I want to make sure I don’t have any symptoms here over the next week as the virus is virtually non-existent on the Oregon Coast. Certainly wouldn’t want to bring it there or be reliant on the hospitals over there. Probably wouldn’t happen as the drive back to the city is less than 1.5 hours.

      Glad to hear you are managing the situation well and staying healthy!

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  2. My heart goes out to your son in Brooklyn. He is being wise by staying in his place and taking precautions with food deliveries. I have a system for bringing food into the house, too. I’m concerned for our state financially and frankly, I hope we’ll have enough resources (medical supplies, beds, etc.) when it hits here, which is far from NYC. I do believe our governor is showing great leadership. There are so many people working so hard right now – 7 days a week. I appreciate them. My heart really goes out to the medical workers under so much stress right now too.

    On the positivity note — we went for a lovely walk yesterday w our dog and it was sunny. People were sitting outside in chairs by their homes. People were following social distance rules and so many people smiled, said hello, or even talked a little (way more than 6 ft away). Humans desire human contact and support. It was nice to see and experience. We even saw some friends; they stayed on their porches, and we were on the street or sidewalk, but to was nice to talk a bit.

    I know what you mean about FB. I am trying my best to use it for positive social contact and as a way to “see” my family and their little ones. And dogs. I see lots of dogs in my feed. Surprised? LOL I have had to “snooze” some people. That helps. Take good care, Kat.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, beleeme, I love your gratitude posts! Positive energy is important. Our neighbors are likewise socializing with proper distancing. It’s so difficult as they are a friendly bunch. Missing their ladies neighborhood happy hours, which I never seem to remember to attend!

      I need to likewise snooze some people on my FB. I do love watching the funny videos FB keeps throwing at me!

      And I do understand you need to take every precaution as you continue to heal! Stay healthy! xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I am so sorry you are having such a tough time, Kat. I almost feel guilty after reading this, because my experience of this is so far filled with love, kindness and positivity.

    Here, we have a thing people are doing for kids, we’re going on a bear hunt, where people are putting teddy bears in their windows, for kids as they walk outside, observing social distance.

    Possibly helped by vert lovely autumn weather.

    Take care, hope your loved ones are safe and well xxx

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    • Oh, we’re doing fine here. Maybe my message was jumbled? Here in our neighborhood, our city, our state, our country even, we are working together as best we can to stay in touch and help those who need it, in safe ways. My frustration was with the judgment coming from foreign lands. As previously stated, our local state and most others have handled our health and safety in incredibly prompt and compassionate ways.

      Not sure if you all use the Nextdoor app/site for people to stay in touch, but there are all kinds of opinions on there. I mostly find it helpful, but have deleted for now. Like on Reddit, a site I refuse to partake in, there will always be people with bad attitudes.

      My issues mostly come from abroad, people bashing the US and assuming things based on what is written about Trump. It’s easy to jump on that bandwagon, but what we need now is understanding and compassion, just like every other country.

      We’re well into spring now here, a gorgeous time for rebirth and renewal. Apparently we’ve been dealing with this a bit longer considering we’ve been in lock down for a while. We’re all doing fine. I just don’t think this is a time for jokes or judgment.

      Glad you’re enjoying yourself. We are all safe. NYC is inundated, so the kid + girlfriend are taking even more intense measures to stay healthy.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh yes, I understand. I just meant sorry if my comment irritated. I was aware there was a lot of good being done.

        We are not allowed to use our cars for anything other than supermarket, stock feed or medical runs. We’ve been told mo boating, swimming, hunting or use of second homes unless that is where we have quarantined to. Mo travel between towns, etc. This is being enforced strictly too, like your comment about Cannon Beaxh. .

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  4. Well, said. I eliminated all of my connections on Facebook that I did not serve with, did not work with, or meet face to face. It eliminated most if not all of the negativity. You may be in a different position because of your international travel, but for me it was a God send. I don’t want politics or any negativity in my news feed. There’s enough of that crap in the news. Anyway, I’m glad you two are doing OK. ~Dave

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I totally agree. Negativity and ’other’ bashing doesn’t help anyone. It only makes things 100x worse. We need optimism, support and compassion more than ever now. I hope your son in Brooklyn is OK. Scary for him – and for all of you. I have a daughter and son in law in London, England. Not quite as serious as New York but still a tough place to live at the moment. Xx

    Liked by 2 people

    • No matter where or what, we will always worry about our babies. These are some stressful times. I can’t wait until we can travel again. We’ll probably head straight to NYC to see the boy. Meanwhile, trying to keep things in perspective. Things are especially difficult enough down here without additional judgment and negativity. I hope you and your family are staying healthy, and sane! xoxo

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