Scrambling home, sheltering in place

Each family, each group of friends suddenly scrambling to be in a particular place, their country, their home.

On facebook I watched over several days as a friend’s beautiful haunting photos of Italian countryside turned to desperation as there are no masks, there are no flights, and the government help line is forever busy.

Photo by: EF

My dad, a snowbird lounging by the pool in Palms Springs, brushed off with insouciance the increasingly frantic pleas from us, his adult children, to come home, while simultaneously trying to convince me that a trip I had planned to the Laurentians in Québec was “too dangerous”.

At my end there were still so few cases in Canada, was still no mandate from government to avoid travel between the provinces, and I knew the visit with trees and birds and snow, devoid of humans except for my Montreal buddy, would be about as safe as you could get…

Back home after traveling the newly-sanitized trains, I returned to a roommate who had joined me in mid-February to be close to her pregnant daughter, due to give birth – a first grandchild. The plan had been a month or two to help the new parents in the early days. She is frail, older, but can still cook and consult and be of comfort.

But as the emergency decrees descended, she too got imploring calls from sisters and the other daughters back in Vancouver – “come home now, while you still can!”

One look at the state of the airports on late night television made her decision for her –

People travelling from all over the world jammed in with no masks, no gloves… the WORST possible scenario. For now she is “sheltering in place”, which is my place.

Since I had been on trains, exposed to travellers, and since I continue to go to the grocery store and my studio, we decided to be cautious. We are maintaining (mostly) 6 feet apart in the home, and wipe down all faucets, door handles, counters, and light switches just in case.

The invisible enemy…

All work that was potentially on the horizon has vanished. No travel, no shoot. No shoot, no edit. But I have the great good fortune of being in an artists’ co-op of sorts, full of community-minded folks, in the great, safe country of Canada where we have this thing called universal health care.

And you, Nose Followers? Any recent travel and scrapes along the way? Are you happily sheltering in place, or stir crazy already? What news of this strange new reality we are living?

8 thoughts on “Scrambling home, sheltering in place”

  1. I forget if I already said this the other time I commented on your post in the last few days, but I have to wonder if this is just mother Earth doing something to slow down frantic human activity which is giving her a fever. Very quiet here where all I see is miles of trees.

    1. Terron, I don’t think you mentioned that last time, but definitely I’ve heard a similar sentiment from others – Earth is shaking off her fleas, she’s had enough of us, there’s too many of us, too much of our busy-ness all the time… I know some people have also been working with the imagery of the lungs – as the organ being attacked. Will try to find that for a future post.

  2. I’m supposed to go north again in mid April. I need to finish emptying my mum’s house and sell it…but, we’ll wait and see. Ak Air is saying all travelers to ANC should self quarantine for a certain amount of time, which won’t be an issue if I can reach the house. The almost 200 miles between mum’s and the airport are the problem. Several cases found up north and they aren’t testing where I am here because they are hoping for the curve to flatten with the staying home. We had two cases in our county early in March, no more since. Odd, but true.

    1. Like you’ve already flattened the curve, then? Remarkable. There are things you can do to protect yourself if you’ll make the drive. I’ve been using gloves for outings, and if you have access to masks… And then increasingly, the indications are to : when you arrive, strip your clothes off, put them in the laundry machine and have a shower. I’ve been trying to convince myself to do all of that each time I go to the grocery store (cause we have plenty of cases here now) but I just can’t get myself to believe it’s necessary. Totally my own covidiot tendency.

      1. One of the health bloggers I follow suggested the strip and wash routine. Although, the travel thing at the moment is still up in the air (bad pun!). There are some serious fines if you bring the virus in to AK.

  3. Damn, that airport!

    We’re completely safe. São Luiz do Paraitinga is just around the corner and over a hill. It’s the town people from all over the world flocked to recently when they thought the world was going to end. Apparently it’s the safest place in the universe. Yes, the UNIVERSE!

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