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.
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?