Well we made it to day 7 of our 14 day mandatory self-quarantine of a New World Disorder. And everyone is still alive and somewhat sane.
What a trip this has been, and still is. We drove from Palm Springs to Vancouver and we arrived one day after a newly enforced Canadian government order that stated all Canadians returning to Canada from anywhere abroad had to do mandatory self-isolation for two weeks. Before this it was voluntary quarantine. Timing is everything they say. However we still had to (and still have to until further notice) maintain 2 metres (6 ft.) distance from one another.
When we arrived at the border, which by the way, was empty, our border officer read us the new rules and told us in no uncertain terms that if we were to leave our place of isolation (where we had to head straight for, with no stops whatsoever) we could be fined anywhere from $1,000 to $1,000,000. Yup; that’s up to 1 million dollars! Needless to say I’m not gonna let that happen. If so, is there anyone who can bail me out for a million? Didn’t think so!
So we had to bid adieu (for now) to simple everyday outings like getting our own groceries and walking our dogs. Although I do let mine just outside the house several times a day. A good friend and neighbour is nice enough to walk Layla (who needs more exercise). We’ve been ordering takeout (my new safe word) and having groceries delivered since then.
Still, it’s strange to be on “house arrest” when we have no symptoms, although I do understand it’s to help keep the possibility we have it from spreading to those who are more vulnerable. We all know by now what we’re supposed to do to help get everything back to normal. Remember normal?
Here’s what I was not expecting… coming home to find my fridge conked out for the first time due to a power outage and dealing with the stench of throwing everything out including the melted frozen berries that made a mess in the freezer. Luckily for me I have a backup fridge in the garage. Who has a back-up fridge? I do! But then no food because all was tossed. And forget about getting a service person. I tried. Once they found out I was in California… forget about it.
Then, my phone died. Aaaarrrggghhh! Can phones contract coronavirus? Nah. It may only need a new battery. But how do I order groceries with no phone? And why do I not have a back-up phone? Next best thing – to email someone you know with your essential list. Then they deliver and after they’ve left, you find out that you forgot to add that one critical item on your list that you needed to make your meal complete. It’s like having a bagel without the cream cheese or bread without butter. You get the idea. So you make do.
Next up: let’s say you need to print out a document and fax it to someone? Under normal circumstances if you’re out of printer cartridges you get in your car and drive to Staples, get more and that’s that. But when you’re under house arrest you can’t go anywhere, let alone drive. So you have to ask someone (via e-mail because no phone remember?) to print it out for you and put it in your mailbox. No one wants to be near you…just in case. No one!
Here’s the good news: not having to get dressed, more time to make soup and cookies, no excuse to not clean house, cannot think of anything else at the moment.
So here we are. I’ll let you know how we made out next Friday. Which is Good Friday. Which will be very good Friday for all in this house. In the meantime a friend sent me this timely poem:
Suddenly, we slept in one world and woke up in another.
Disney has no more magic and Paris is no longer romantic..
Suddenly, in New York everyone sleeps.
And the Great Wall of China is no longer a fortress.
Suddenly, hugs and kisses become weapons.
Holding hands and walking the parks become outlawed.
Suddenly, not visiting aging parents and grandparents becomes an “act of love”.
Suddenly, our bombs and machine guns, our tanks and artilleries begin to gather dust.
Suddenly, we realized that power is with faith
And that money has no value when it can’t even buy you toilet paper.
Suddenly, we have been put back in our place by the hands of the universe.
And we’ve been made aware how vulnerably “human” we truly are, when faced with a microbe so powerfully inhumane.
Keep the hope alive, be well & stay safe everyone!!
Header photo: Tamara Gauthier