COVID-19, Spring Break Day 2


I wore one of these masks in my own home today while I cleaned black mold from our windowsills. Fogged up my glasses. Don’t know how anyone wears these all the time.

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I also removed our hanging bulb light fixtures and put new energy-efficient, recessed lighting in the ceiling. Everyone liked it so much better.

It’s hard, trying to just do the simple stuff while answering all the questions that no one has any real answers for yet.

  • Are we having summer break now?
  • Are we going to have to go to school in July?
  • What about next week? Are we still going on a road trip with the cousins?
  • Am I going to have to repeat a grade?
  • Did I just graduate? I think I just graduated!

I keep telling the kids, “Live in the day. Tomorrow has enough worry of its own.”

“We’re not worried. We just want to know.”

After lunch, I managed to get our youngest daughter together with one of her friends from school. This is a difficult task, what with me being a dad. School moms naturally interact with each other, share phone numbers easily… Even when I’ve got used uniform clothes to sell, I get no real contact from moms.

But now, the world has changed. I spent hours with a mom and a grandma, watching our girls play on the park. (I think my girl’s favorite was the tightrope.)

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Our conversation was still awkward, though. Work, no work, shortened hours, grocery stores, Costco employees getting a chance to shop for themselves. The grandmother was on her day off. She’s a cleaner for a particular care facility in a neighboring city and has some clients who have caught the virus. “They’re normally not in when I come to clean. Now, I don’t know what will happen.”

Earlier, while waiting for them to arrive, I sat on a bench with an elderly man who had a rescue dog dancing around his feet. Its coat was a beautiful mix of brilliant white, browns, reds and blacks–I almost liked it. Not that I have anything against dogs I know. I just have little tolerance for owners who think young dogs don’t need to be trained to not leap up on the bench, sniff my crotch, lick my hands and my face.

“She’s a cute puppy.”

No, she’s a slobber mess and I’m Adrian Monk. “WIPE! I need a wipe!”

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For dinner the kids ate Mac and Cheese and I took my wife out for what might be the last time in a long time. We drove to my wife’s favorite restaurant. Closed. Had been doing SkipTheDishes earlier during the day. Now, closed. “It’ll be the first place we go to when this is all over,” I promised her.

We ended up at my new favorite, Alicia’s Flavors. Mexican. Hole-in-the-wall, but tastefully done. There were two other couples in the whole place. I was tempted to get a Corona with my enchiladas de mole, but it would have been in bad taste. As it was, we spent most of the meal talking about the ramifications it was having on our life, the kids, my job, her job, etc.

I’m thankful she still has a job to go to, but I am concerned she doesn’t get burnt out. Sick? If I’m processing that possibility, it’s down low, where I’m not really aware of it. Mostly I think I’m concerned she doesn’t become a point of transference for the youngest cousins or my wife’s parents.

I tried changing the conversation a few times. “When was the last time I had a Margarita? California, with my aunt?” We finally did shift to other things, but I can’t remember what right now.

We finished our meal with churros and ice cream.

I’m very glad we went.


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