Rhymes with Systemic

~40 years from now~

“Grandma, what did you do during the pandemic of 2020?”

“Well sweetheart, mostly I let laundry pile up and surfed the internet in pajamas until 2pm, but I did put in a row of okra that one time.”

Truly the next Greatest Generation.

History feels weird when you’re living it. The days are filled with just going about our normal business and wondering how in hell any of this is memorable… and yet.

  • The great TP shortage.
  • The real fear, with deaths mounting.
  • The worry about contagion and how to keep ourselves and our family safe.
  • The constant wonder if you shouldn’t have grabbed another 6-pack 12-pack of beer to last through the 2 weeks you think you planned correctly for on the last trip to the grocery store.
  • And yet there are still no eggs.
  • There is no school. This has yet to sink in.
  • I continue to work. For now.

Is this going about our life in self quarantine some kind of denial, or is it just that humans are incredibly capable of adapting to the conditions they’re put in? Is it like a gas conforming and filling whatever vessel it’s put in? Is it? Sounds like some kind of meditation mantra: “Be a gas and conform to the shape you inhabit. Fill it. Feel it. and breathe out.”

In the midst of all that I have bursts of survivalist/ Victory Garden/ Great Depression style prepping where I buy acorn squash, okra, and green bean seeds. I buy, on a last trip to the store and now that it’s restocked with meat, plenty of chicken and stew meat and a roast and vacuum seal all of them in meal sized portions for the freezer. I wonder if I’m going to have to supply the older neighbors with food in the coming weeks… and then we go on a family walk and those same older neighbors are having a block party on their front porch and not social distancing. God dang it, neighbors take this crap seriously! No acorn squash for you!

And then I haven’t like, ACTUALLY planted most of these seeds yet.

We hold the 11 year old’s birthday during the pandemic- and let me tell you have I never been more thankful to have ordered presents early for once. My husband ordered her a guitar, and since she is my fellow space lover, I ordered her an authenticated meteorite that fell in Africa in the 1990s. (This cost all of 9 dollars. Astronomical! {snort}. Took a month and a half to deliver, but still. STILL!) She also wanted an alarm clock which now seems… yeah. What does she set an alarm for?

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Painting party results. We didn’t have canvasses, so the husband cut pieces of boards to paint on. I can almost feel that future nostalgia!

There was no birthday party with school friends, so we tried to do it up as a family. Painting party, spa night sitting around in robes doing face masks while watching a movie. During the day my husband took her out to go fishing as there can’t be a better form of social distancing than sitting in a canoe. She had a great time. And now… well now she has the memory of a birthday in pandemic.

Is this creating history? Is this it? Or is the real history something else that still awaits?

And I feel like I should really be getting after it so much more than I am- but I’m not. Putting in 2 rows of okra damn near killed me earlier this week. I am still recovering from being sick. Digging up a 4’x4′ section of garden and amending it with sand and a half a bag of precious composted manure had me DRENCHED in sweat and exhausted. I am still coughing. Was it allergies? Damned if I’ll ever know probably. But it sure is taking a while to get over. It’s been 2 weeks since I got sick and no one else in the family is sick… so I’d say I’m just being a wuss and it was allergies… because 2 weeks would have shown us if it was the other thing.

And yet… I was exhausted putting in okra? I set this worry aside for another day and just try to take it easy to get better. Soon. Will be soon, I’m sure. For now the lingering cough takes on slightly more than normal weight in a really annoying way.

In other news we’re anxiously awaiting Buff Orpington chicks… wondering if we’ll be able to get them on Tuesday before a more extensive stay at home order takes place- it feels like a race. The children are excited and I stand by this decision. I also wonder if I’ll be like this as I watch chickens shitting everywhere in 6 months:

The Office

And I wanted this.

But eggs. And is like FFA?

I am also not the only one to have this idea, it seems. According to the feed store they sold out of over 500 chicks last week in less than an hour after they arrived. They open at 7am on Tuesday. The chicks arrive at 7:30am. The older girls and I will be staking out the feed store at 6am like they’re iPhones. or the new Star Wars movie. But like… for chickens. This is just part of the new normal right now.

in other news I wrote an article for one of the professional magazines in my field about working from home. It got picked up for their newsletter and will get published next week. Tip # 4 was not to work from your bed or couch. Tip #5 was to change out of pajamas. I wrote the article sitting in bed wearing pajamas. Somehow this perfectly encapsulates this past week for me.

Stay safe. Be well.

I’m writing this sitting in bed in pajamas.