Yay! Back to Isolation!

I am so lost in time that I have no idea what day it is. I thought it was Tuesday. Then I reminded myself it was Wednesday. Then I decided it was still several days until Thursday when — perhaps — the garage construction workers will return.

It turns out this is Tuesday, after all. At least, I think it is.

I don’t really need to worry about time since one day is much like the one before and the one before that and probably tomorrow and many tomorrows to come, but I have to be careful to drive my car occasionally. In the winter, I can get by with driving every ten days, but when the temperatures hit the nineties, the ethanol in the gas dries out and bad gas ruins the hoses, so I have to drive about every five days. When the garage is finished, I should be able to fudge a little on driving since I won’t have to deal with the hot sun beating up my car, but meantime, I have to count the days between trips around town.

Today was a driving day, but I should have stayed home. Although I do believe that The Bob does not merit all the damage caused by closing the economy, I am still careful to maintain a safe distance from people. It’s not just because of The Bob, which isn’t a problem here, but because so many people are sick from various other ailments, and because . . . because I want to and now I have an excuse for not getting too close to strangers.

Unfortunately, this was not a good day for staying away from folks.

I limped my way into one store using my trekking pole for a cane, and a woman held the inner door for me. I stopped a few feet from her, but she continued to hold. What weird times we live in when a kind gesture becomes . . . obnoxious. I finally said, “Just go.” Then the whole Bob thing must have dawned on her because she gave me a sheepish smile and hurried away.

When I left the store, a scruffy fellow came up to me to talk about my VW Bug. He got so close I had to hold him off with my pole. He too gave a sheepish smile, but remained standing just outside the pole’s four-foot range.

Then, as I was leaving the parking lot, a car came charging out of the Dairy Queen drive thru and barely stopped in time to keep from hitting me.

Needless to say, I was glad to get safely back to the cocoon of my isolation.

I had a surprise waiting for me — although my larkspur flowers were all purple last year, this year they are coming up pink and white and purple and lavender. It was hard to get a photo of all the different colors because they seemed to also practice some sort of distancing.


Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator.

4 Responses to “Yay! Back to Isolation!”

  1. Treve Brown Says:

    Interesting post Pat! I’ve noticed a pattern on the odd occasions when I do venture out that there’s a significant minority of people who do not feel inclined to respect other peoples’ personal space at the moment. Given the implications of that, I find this rather shocking personally. It’s one thing to choose to be reckless with like minded souls, but really very inconsiderate to do it to folks who are trying to keep themselves safe. Hope you’re keeping ok otherwise Pat!

    Warm greetings from England! Treve

  2. Sam Sattler Says:

    I hear you, Pat. The longer this goes on, the more comfortable I’m becoming staying in and away from the hassles of crowds and traffic. I hate to admit it, but I’m starting to enjoy it now.

    Speaking of…did you see the news item about the bar that re-opened by having each of its patrons “wear” a tractor-tire inner tube around their waists? The tubes have what appears to be about a three-foot circumference, so the patrons can’t get closer than six-feet to each other. The tubes even come with little built-in tables inside the ring. Pretty clever stuff – but I’d still rather stay home, I think.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      I’m not sure I will ever go back to doing much around people. I’ve even started getting things online that I can’t get here rather than going to a larger town for the items.

      Yes, I saw that bar photo. It’s an amusing concept, but seems to negate the point of going to a bar. But what do I know. I haven’t been to a bar since my 21st birthday.

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