I was reflecting tonight, on how weird life has become. Three of my four kids now sleep in my room every night (some in my bed and some in sleeping bags on the floor). I have only gone through half a tank of gas in 5 weeks, when normally I would have gone through at least 8 tanks.. I leave my packages on the porch for days and don't even worry (or care) if they get stolen. Sometimes, I don't get up until 8:30 in the morning, when I was always up by 6. I could go on. As the kids and I headed out for a walk tonight, after dinner, at 7:45. I realized that in our old life, we only took walks before dinner and never when it was dark. I feel like I have many such realizations, every day. So much has changed, in such a short time. It's not just the big things (no work, no school, no socializing), but all the little things too. I feel like I am living in the fable of the frog in the pot of water that is slowly being brought up to a boil. We all know how that ends. Back to our walk. It was really short, lovely nonetheless.. Graham is scared of the dark and we also live in a community with no street lights and lots of wildlife, so we couldn't venture very far. We looked at the stars, enjoyed the coolish evening air and the novelty of taking a walk at such an unusual hour. Earlier in the day, I had to leave the house for a few hours to run errands (Escape from Alcatraz). I noticed how excited I was to be escaping. I was only running some very boring, yet "essential" errands, but I was strangely excited at prospect of escaping the house (alone). A month ago,, I would not have been excited over the thought of running these particular errands, nor entertained the thought of leaving my kids home to do so . But times have changed. In anticipation of my impending escape today, last night we signed up for a new virtual babysitting service, The name of that service is Disney + Streaming Service. With Covid 19 infiltrating every aspect of our lives, there is no such thing as real human babysitters anymore, so Disney streaming is the next best thing.. The kids decided to watch Up and I left, around 3:15. First I headed to the bank, then to the pet store, then to the drive-thru car wash, then to Target, then to another Target, then to Bristol Farms and finally to our tiny farmer's market inside Hidden Hills. The glee of escaping had all but disappeared by the time I got to the first Target. Target has a way of doing that to me, even when we're not in the middle of a pandemic. But having to get my mask and gloves on for each errand, then sanitize my hands when I returned to the car and worry about what I had touched that I should not have, just took all the joy out of my escape. Whenever I venture out these days, I am always struck by how empty the roads are. I feel like I am in one of those Armageddon movies, where the main character comes out from hiding to find that he or she is the only person left on earth. There is that doomsday feeling looming in the air and it gives me the creeps. When I go inside stores or banks, at first I am strangely curious to check out everyone else's protective gear. For example, the employees in Wells Fargo all seemed to be wearing matching masks, that resembled the colors of the bank. That made me wonder if they had been made especially for them, sort of like a new bank uniform. At Target, I saw two older women, in their late 70's I would guess, not wearing any protective gear at all. I was shocked at their seemingly cavalier attitude about their own health, given their age. These are just some of odd observations and thoughts I now have, while standing in line, with my feet firmly placed on the silhouettes of feet on the floor, spaced exactly 6 feet apart. After a while, I find that it all gets to be too much for me. I can't breath in my mask, I can't decide how many pairs of gloves I should burn through in one afternoon of errands, I am not sure how many pumps of hand sanitizer are enough and I am just plain freaked out at what I see. As excited as I was to escape, just a few hours before, I couldn't wait to get back to the safety and normalcy (realtively speaking) of my home. The kids were just finishing Up as I arrived home. They were excited to see me and I was relieved to be back in my cell.
Look at what I spotted at one of the Targets I hit today. This was my first sighting of toilet paper in a Target in 5 weeks. I took this as a good omen.
Lest you think I cook gourmet meals from scratch every night, this was our dinner tonight. It consisted of leftovers from Easter served on paper plates. The salad was not leftover. The yellow veggies on the salad are Garin and Graham's homemade pickled beets.
Our magical walk at dusk.