There’s Always Something

The ornamental pear trees are in full bloom; consequently, so are my allergies. And oh, this is so not the time to have to deal with allergies. Even though there is zero chance that I have The Bob, I have to be especially careful to stay away from people because they don’t know my dry cough and difficulty breathing are from stuffed sinuses and not a virus.

Even worse from my standpoint is that the Colorado governor has asked everyone to wear masks, and anything covering my nose and mouth makes it even that much more difficult to breathe. Yep — so not the time to have to deal with allergies! If it becomes mandatory to wear a mask, I’ll use it for the few minutes I’m inside a store or around people, but other than that, it’s not feasible.

A list of what one can and cannot do during this time is circulating around the internet, and it says you’re not supposed to let anyone in your house — not parents, grandparents, children, grandchildren, best friends. No one. And yet, that’s patently absurd. My toilet quit working, and since I can’t fix it myself, I had to have someone come into my house, which was a good thing. It turned out that the wax ring wasn’t the problem as we had surmised; instead, the whole flange was corroded, so much so that it was difficult for the bolts to be removed. It was also a job for two people. Certainly not a job for one woman who hadn’t a clue what she was doing.

Since these same two fellows were the very last people I’d seen, it didn’t worry me. If they had infected me, then I would be merely returning the favor.

But, as I said, there is zero chance of my having The Bob. Unless the conspiracy theorists are correct that the virus isn’t a virus but the body’s reaction to the new 5G network, there is no way for me to get it. No one in the county has it, and I haven’t been to any counties that do. And even if people here had it, I am hermitting, and haven’t seen anyone. Except for the people who fixed my toilet, of course.

I see photos of empty streets because of people being in lockdown, but that isn’t true here. Since people are allowed out to exercise, I frequently see small groups of people out walking their dogs or simply just walking. In fact, I see more people now out walking than I did before all this started. So, while other people are hoping this is all over soon so that they can be less alone, I am hoping it’s over soon so I can be more alone!

Still, whether people want to be around folks again or to see less of them, we’re all getting a little antsy. In my case, it’s still the knee more than anything else. I’m healed enough to walk now; I just can’t walk very far yet. But that will come.

Meantime, I have allergies to deal with.

There’s always something, isn’t there? I hope your “somethings” is as minor as mine are.

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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.

The Nasty Thing in the Wood Shed

I didn’t mean to drop a zinger and then leave you hanging. Well, maybe I did. I am a writer after all, and we writers like to leave you wanting more.

Besides, I only learned the truth about the nasty thing in the wooden shed a couple of days ago. To be honest, I didn’t think the capped pipe was anything at all. I was simply being mysterious for the sake of the story. What spooked me (a bit) was the way the contractor kept staring at the sewer pipe and saying, “Anything could be in there.”

He didn’t tell me until afterward that he wondered if it might be a pipe bomb, and he hadn’t wanted to worry me.

As it turns out, nothing was in the tube, though the pipe wasn’t as innocuous as I thought it was. It was a makeshift hydroponic contraption for growing marijuana. There were several holes drilled along the length of the pipe, one for each seedling. After the plants were in place, the pipe was then filled with water. Drains were attached to the capped ends to remove or change the water without disturbing the growing plants.

Since the pipe was empty, it was easy enough to dispose of — it went into the dumpster.

There haven’t been any other discoveries. A winter storm put the work on hold, but also that same winter storm helped ease my sinus condition. Apparently, I am allergic to the ornamental pear trees that are prevalent in the neighborhood. They truly are beautiful, with those bright white blossoms, but the beauty is not worth the pain. (Though it will have to be. This is a neighbor’s tree, not mine, so I’m stuck with the sinus problem.)

Next week, perhaps, the gas company will come and move the gas line so we can finally get the porch foundation poured. After that, they will put in the subfloor so we can get at the basement.

I wonder what we will find when we start moving things around down there? Dust of course. Lots of dust. And dirt because the basement is bordered on two sides by an open crawl space. But other than that, who knows? Anything can be buried in a 90-year-old basement.

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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.