Day Four: A State-Wide Shut Down Journal

I woke up on day four with a sore throat and a cough. I crossed my fingers and chanted, “Allergies. Allergies. Allergies.” I’d never wanted allergies so badly in my life. The probability of it being allergies was pretty good because it was the first day of Spring (yay!). No fever. No trouble breathing.

I quarantined myself in the living for the first half of the day, just in case. I played Minecraft. A lot.

Around one I took my dog outside to go the bathroom, and was pleasantly surprised. It was still a little rainy, but it was close to 70 degrees outside. I don’t mind the rain, just the cold. My son was super excited when I said we were going outside to play. I needed some fresh air and nature, and he needed to run off his energy.

Of course, as soon as we stepped outside, there was a rain burst. It poured. My son looked up at me and asked, “Do we need to go inside?”

“Noooooo,” I said. “Race you to the mud puddles.”

The burst of rain only lasted maybe five minutes, and stopped as quickly as it started. I grabbed my phone afterward to take some pictures. There is a swamp over the drop off you can see in the picture above, and I grabbed my wooden frog caller my brother bought me for my birthday.

The sound of the swamp is soothing, and nearly all the critters went silent as I used my frog caller. I glanced at my son with a grin and said, “Queen of the frogs.”

Lydia enjoyed it, too.

*sigh*

I jumped on facebook, and saw this gem.

I let my writers group know the meeting was still on, but we’d be having a virtual meeting. I started the writing group a few weeks ago after realizing we didn’t have a local one. I mean, we have one that meets once a month at the library but it seems like it’s just there. Once this is all over I plan to go with some of my members to meet more and see if they’ll join my group, too. Writer meeting twice a month? Who can deny that?

We’d met twice at a coffee shop down town before the shut down happened, and I’d never had so much fun. To be around my own people…there isn’t a feeling like it. I met two new people and finally met someone I was facebook friends with (who my mom worked with). My son was at the second one when I met my facebook friend, and ironically played bag pipes on his phone just before my friend came in. My friend is Scottish. The bag pipes were totally by accident, but so perfect!

Cases in Pa jumped nearly 100 on day four. Another state shut down, too. My county still doesn’t have any confirmed cases, but it’s only a matter of time. It’s all around us, and I’m sure it’s here, too. It just hasn’t been confirmed.

I tried to write after we came inside. My writers group got a kick out of the following meme I posted because we could all relate to it.

This is how writing went:

The thing about watching TWD…it didn’t feel the same as any time I watched it before. I talked to my brother on day four, too, and he said exactly how I was feeling. “It won’t be the same after this.” He meant this time will affect everything in the future for us, and he was right. It was only hours in the future, but I saw TWD in a new light. Granted, I’m not fighting zombies, just a virus, but there was…a knowing? It’s hard to explain. The feeling I had while watching…these characters were facing an unprecedented time. I got that. There was a helplessness in them. I got that, too. An uncertainty for tomorrow. Yep, check.

What I really felt was when they had just taken over the prison and had to tell the prisoners who’d been holed up there that the world had ended. The look on their faces. They couldn’t believe what was going on and I said to the TV, “Yeah, shits crazy, huh?”

My brother let me know that the baby shower for his unborn kid was cancelled. He told me he was still working (he works for a company that goes all over the East coast to stock shelves at big stores) and that it was scary, but someone had to make sure the shelves had products on them. He’s been working in the epicenter of two out breaks. Baltimore and Richmond.

I thank you, little brother. You are one of the essential services who keep this country running. You know what’s scary? Truck drivers are being turned away from some of their only options to eat. Truck stops are closed. Drive thru won’t serve them because they have to walk up to the window because their trucks won’t fit through the clearance. They can only get food at places for take out if they can find a parking spot. Their cost of living has tripled in some cases.

Also scary:

I think this is because people are expecting looting. They’re expecting break ins. If this continues and our stocks are depleted, people will do whatever they have to do to feed their families. And people will do whatever they have to do to protect their families. Society hasn’t crumbled yet, but people are preparing it to.

I’ve kept my door locked. My windows locked. I don’t live in a crowded area. My neighbor is a mile away. I never locked my door or windows except for at night. Now, they are locked all the time. I saw a car driving slow in front of my house. I don’t know what they were doing, but my writer brain went through all sorts of scenarios.

There are a lot of animals around me, but it’s been increasing because of lack of traffic on the road. I woke up on day four to see a beheaded rabbit outside my window. Probably a coyote or fox. It just gave me a feeling that more things were to come. Bad things. Like an omen.

Stay safe, guys.

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