Everything changed

March 30, 2020

Today I took a longish bike ride. Like around an hour. It’s the longest ride I’ve taken since I last rode home from work a little over two weeks ago, when we got the word we’d be teleworking for the foreseeable future.

It wasn’t a surprise, exactly. There had been less and less people around the hospital campus in each of the preceding days. Less car traffic on each commute. The week before, I’d asked if we could get hand sanitizer in our suite, only to find it was already sold out every where. My co-workers and I co-workers were punching elevator buttons with our elbows and using paper towels to open the doors of the fridge and the microwave. We had been getting daily COVID-19 updates since the end of February. On that last day at the office, there were 75 confirmed cases in Oregon, and 1187 confirmed cases in Washington.

When I got home, the dogs ran up to the gate and barked, like they always do. It was sunny and vaguely warm. Beau darted back and forth in front of the garden fence, tracking a squirrel scampering across the top of the cement block wall than runs parallel to the fence and stands at the back of our lot. Billie circled the yard looking for a bone to bring me. I rolled by bike into the shed. I fed the dogs. I fed the cats. I got the mail. I set my pannier down in the middle of the living room and emptied out the extra things I’d grabbed from my desk in a hurry: a power supply, a can of soup, a bunch of bandanas I kept in a drawer drawer and used for napkins, a sweatshirt, a special pen, and a small bottle of hand sanitizer I’d brought from home. I got on my computer and re-read the update about working from home for the foreseeable future. It felt so ominous, like officially ominous.

I did 2 things after that. First, I cleaned the two front windows on our house that are not covered by the porch. The dirt on the glass had been bothering me for weeks. I didn’t even mess with changing out of my bike clothes. I closed my computer, got out the windex, grabbed a roll of paper towels, and took them and a step stool outside. My neighbor across the street gave me a hard time about getting a jump on spring cleaning. The second thing I did, was put on my sweatpants, take out the weighted blanket I gave MTB for her birthday, crawl under it on the couch, then turn on the TV and fall asleep. I slept until MTB came home around 10 o’clock.

No Comments »