Last week I mentioned that life was slowing down in my area due to the COVID-19 spread, and suggested going to a museum as a way to avoid both crowds and stress. Things have changed in a week!
Monday: The Nutrition Center where I volunteer has changed its procedures: instead of letting the homeless/indigent clients line up and pick their own bread, produce, and packaged goods from the shelves, each client will receive pre-bagged groceries as their number is called.
At noon I showed up for my dance class’s annual lunch at a popular local Chinese restaurant, only to find it had been cancelled the night before. (The instructor mis-typed my email address so I hadn’t received the message.) The restaurant, normally crowded, was nearly empty except for people picking up takeout. I had wondered when I found a parking spot right in front.
Tuesday: My sister’s choir was about to have its first rehearsal with an orchestra in preparation for a gala spring concert. Rehearsals and performances have been cancelled.
My dance class usually has about forty participants. On Wednesday and Friday we were down to about twenty-five, but we voted to continue the class as it relieves stress and preserves sanity for those who continue to attend.
Thursday: I was planning another lunch with a friend who was coming to town to see her grand-daughter perform in a school musical. The performance was cancelled, so my friend is not coming.
A neighbor and I were planning to carpool to an adult education class at nearby Stanford University. The class has been re-vamped to take place on-line until further notice. My brain will get dusted, but the friendly chats on the way to and from class will be lost.
Friday: My grandson’s school is closed for deep cleaning for three days. His sixth-grade class camping trip is up in the air.
Friday: My husband bought tickets for a piano concert in a beautiful venue in San Francisco at the end of March. The concert is cancelled
Saturday: #1 Son, the benefit auctioneer, has had two of his booked auctions cancelled. March and April are normally the height of the charity auction season.
He was also planning to take his family to Seattle to visit his daughter in university there. The university is closed, with classes being held on-line. Seattle is another COVID-19 hot spot. #1 Son cancelled the trip.
#2 Son is organizing a neighborhood meeting to strategize how to assist parents who can’t work from home since the local day-care center is closing.
Sunday: On his most recent trip to the grocery store, my husband bought extra toilet paper and canned goods (SPAM? We haven’t eaten SPAM since our first year of marriage!)
The local libraries announce that they are closing. Fines will be suspended for the duration.
Monday: When I do my pickups at two local groceries for the Nutrition Center, I notice that there is NO CHICKEN in either store – the only poultry available at all is previously frozen turkey back and wings. What’s with this?
I get word that despite our vote, our dance teacher is cancelling the remainder of the session as anxiety deepens over the COVID-19 virus.
Local museums announce that they are closing (I hope you took my advice last week while you could!)
Monday afternoon: we are warned that effective at midnight, our county along with six others will be in lockdown mode: only essential travel, only essential businesses to be open (pharmacies, grocery stores, food markets, doctor’s offices are included, but restaurants must close unless serving takeout.)
What next? Stay tuned for a Life in Lockdown.