March 2020- The Last Live Music, The Flood, Moving To The Farm For Lockdown 

Before you begin reading my Pandemic Diary I want to preface it with a short synopsis of the state of my life right before lockdown happened. I thought 2019 was the worst year I'd ever experienced! 

I had just moved out of the house I shared with my ex husband at the end of 2019 and temporarily moved in with a long time family friend until I could recover and figure out what I wanted to do next. My marriage had been abusive and I experienced domestic violence and a lot of emotional abuse. I was still coming out of PTSD from it and recovering from battered woman syndrome so I was already vulnerable.

It was May 2019 when I finally left our house and marriage.  The emotional abuse had reached a new level and on a vacation trip to NYC the last physical attack happened. I was hit repeatedly on my left upper thigh and had my face slammed into the center console while I was the passenger and he was the driver going very fast on a highway. The attack was a textbook abuser attack when they start ranting about something unprovoked and make it escalate to justify their actions. I know this now only because I read a lot of books and online articles about domestic violence and abuse and was able to identify and understand what happened to me. 

It took a week after that incident for me to leave and my decision was prompted by him threatening our bandmate during practice. It was a strange and sad moment of everyone in the room realizing that something was very wrong. I took our beloved dog Suzy with me and went to stay with family.  A few days later Suzy ran away while we were out on my sister's farm and ran right in front of a car and I watched her get hit and thrown into the air to the side of the road. The car didn't even stop or seem to care that they had hit her. I ran to her but she died in my arms on the side of the country road. It was a horrible strange incident that didn't even seem possible. That was the only car for miles. How could they not have slowed down seeing that someone's dog was loose and running away? What kind of horrible person does that? Her death was more heartbreaking for me than the separation and pending divorce because she was the main source of love I had come to depend on. I didn't realize I had checked out of the marriage and only cared about our dog and the music we had been making with our band.

I rented a room from a friend over the summer and waited for my ex to leave so I could take over the house again in August and then I stayed there by myself through December 2019. It was difficult being there without Suzy. I cried a lot. 

The other terrible thing that happened at the end of 2019 was the unexpected death of our band's bass player Mike due to a diabetic coma. It was tragic for so many reasons. He was in his early forties, a loving husband and father, a funny good natured friend and I believe he could have lived if his medicine would have been changed sooner. He was having stomach problems and tried new medicine that wasn't working but had another doctor's appointment right after the new year so was waiting for that appointment and ended up passing out in his favorite chair on Christmas Day and never waking up again. When his wife, who is also in the band and one of my best friends, called us to come to the hospital because he was in a coma, we were shocked. We all thought he was just going to get new medicine and be fine again. 

A few weeks after losing Mike, I went with my friend who was now a young widow, to her very first mammogram appointment as she just turned 40 and the results came back as breast cancer. So that was how we were welcomed into 2020. (I will tell you now that she made it through treatment and is cancer free!)

I still had hope that 2020 would be better than 2019 and a happy event that helped my own personal healing was when my sister gave me new puppy Angelica who is the half sister of Suzy. 

 

My Pandemic Diary 

March 11, 2020 

Friday I talked 2 friends into going with me to three shows (Intermittent Animals at RH, Everlasting Happiness at Ruby's and Honk, Wail & Moan at Dick’s). I was the driver and didn't drink at all so I thought I'd be the healthy one the next day but I got super sick overnight and couldn't do anything Sat or Sun!  The shows were all good and we saw lots of friends and it was a wonderful social night.  Getting sick ruined the weekend though and I was really disappointed that I didn't get to do the Ginger Lees gig w/The Bittertones and see my friend Carole's light show she had worked really hard on or perform at Natalie's with her for the International Women's Day benefit.  Oh well.  The coronavirus scare made me not want to be anywhere in public coughing, that would make a lot of people very upset.  Plus, I felt so bad I couldn't sing anyway, I would have lost my voice. I just laid around the whole weekend except for the short walk in the park Sunday with Angelica.  It was warm all weekend so that was nice.  Monday I still took it easy then went to teach piano and then came home and sat around and watched movies with my roommate. Yesterday I took it easy again but did some computer work.  

So many events are being cancelled I feel like art festivals might not be the way I make money this year.  I might have to teach more or get more online sales to help my money situation.  I would love to get paid for writing and music.  That would be the dream. 

My thought for this morning was if I was still with my ex husband he'd definitely blame me somehow for the coronavirus so I'm glad I'm not in that situation anymore where everything, even the weather, was my fault. 

March 13, 2020 

Covid19 is dominating the news and everyday life.  Yesterday Ohio's governor announced that all gatherings of 100 or more people were banned and that schools will shut down Monday (1 week early) for spring break so they will be off for 3 weeks.  It's to prevent more spread of the virus.  The head of the Health Department said that statistics lead her to believe that 100,000 Ohioans already have the virus. (That's based on 1% of our state population having it).  So I wonder if I have it.  I just have the version that I was able to get over.  I still don't feel completely well, a little cough and a runny nose.  Or that could be a cold/flu.  It's hard to tell and you can't get tested unless you really have bad symptoms.   Everyone is supposed to practice social distancing and stay home as much as possible. Thankfully, I have my dog park group for socializing.  I wanted to go to Marion to see my mom today but maybe I shouldn't.  I'll call her and see how she feels.  I would hate to expose her! My roommate said yesterday when he went to Aldi for groceries there was no TP or bread and the shelves looked like we were having an apocalypse.  This is bad.  I'm worried.  I also am affected work wise now even with piano lessons.  Maybe parents won't want their kids to even have lessons!  I already knew the art festivals were getting cancelled and I'd be out of luck there. 

I went to the grocery and the post office just now.  Many of the shelves were picked over and the frozen vegetable section was empty.  Darn.  I wanted frozen broccoli.  I just bought the stuff I use a lot of: coffee, half and half, soup and broccoli for my veggie rice dishes.  We shall see what happens.  Hopefully it passes and isn't horrible.  I think the best thing is to boost your immune system so I'm taking my herbs and vitamins and drinking EmergenC.  We are all worried about our mom but she thinks she's fine and worries about everyone else.  I also hope my son and his wife stay healthy.  At least they are young and strong so that should keep them safer. 

March 15, 2020 

Friday I didn't go to Marion, I just worked at home and then went to my friend's bday dinner.  It was really fun.  Her other bestie friend for decades was there too and she is always so funny.  We talked about the virus and she thinks E and I both already had it and it has been circulating already.  I think she's right.  That wasn't like anything I've ever had before it really knocked me out and I'm glad I recovered quickly but I was so exhausted I could barely get out of bed.  She's an ER nurse and has been on vacation the past 3 weeks so she's about to walk into the middle of it when she's back at work. I wonder how it went. 

Yesterday I took Angelica to the park and then to get her last round of shots. Then my friend G came over for lunch and to listen to songs that we could pitch for licensing.  While we were doing that K came over and hung out also.  They didn't leave until 5:30 so I was kinda tired.  I did play piano and write a bit though and I came up with a new piano part for a song that I really like and think will be cool.  Today I'm recording at E's so I was trying to prep for that.  I guess I'll record Survive and Time because they're the most complete and I'll have the other band members come in and do their parts.  I'll play some of my other songs for her that are in the works and see what she likes. 

We just got back from the park and I'm having coffee.  The virus news is scary and bad still.  I don't know what's going to happen but any little pain or cough I have makes me think I have it and am going to get sick and die.  Fortunately the medical people who get interviewed say that most healthy people can get it and recover just like with the flu.  So maybe that's what I had and I'm getting better.  Seems like a bunch of us had the same thing.  Glad children are not being affected by it that would be horrible.  This seems to be weeding out the older generation and the sick. I also just heard an NPR story about the homeless population and how they aren't able to get the care they need.  So will it weed out the homeless population as well? Its very crazy and I can't believe it's happening.  What a lifetime to live during.  I guess everyone has something that happens in their time.  We had 911 and now this.  Boomers had WW2.  People before them had The Great Depression.  This is a mess.

Angelica "Jelly" still in puppy form at the park. 

March 17, 2020 

Happy St. Patrick's Day.  There will not be much celebrating tonight since all the bars are closed.  This is such a crazy surreal time.  I get up, take Angelica to the park and have social time there with random dog friends which is nice, then I come home and try to work or yesterday I taught piano lessons online.  I'm hoping people still keep up with lessons as that will be my only income if all art festivals are cancelled.  Etsy might have some sales so I can keep posting and hoping that pans out. I also have my photoshop class to finish and my writing to finish so I have plenty to do. E is helping me with a recording also.  Wow, I have lots to do! 

Today I had a thought about missing how sometimes my ex would bring me coffee in bed on the weekends.  That was nice.  I would do the same for him too. It's nice to remember good things after all the horrible things I've been remembering the past several months.  It's good to be off the rollercoaster of his push and pull, hot and cold emotional nightmare. I don't envy anyone in that position, it's exhausting and depressing. 

My friend texted last night that her job was suspended indefinitely while this is going on.  She worked at Sam Ash music store.  Not in sales, in more of an assistant manager type role.  My plan for absolute terrible times is just to go to Marion and hang out there.  I can work on the farm and help my mom fix stuff around her house which needs tons of work.  It might be a fun way to spend the summer.  Work on our old schoolhouse, build a dock, mow grass. This is making me re evaluate my entire life.  I'm sure its doing that for a lot of people.  Some are just doing the same old job but from home, so they are the lucky ones. I'm glad my son is one of those people.  Medical people are doing the same job at the same place.  That is more risky but I'm grateful for them.  My daughter in law is one of those people.  I hope she stays healthy!  She's pretty strong so I think she'll be ok. 

March 23, 2020 

Today is Monday.  I didn't write since last Tuesday.  Things seemed super busy and a little unnerving with the covid19 ramp up.  Wednesday 3/18 I taught some lessons on Facetime and had 5 kids wanting to come in to the music store for in person lessons (or at least their parents wanted them to). I offered everyone Facetime lessons on Sunday and by the time I was driving to the store 2 texted that they changed their minds and would like online lessons, so that was good.  I ended up only teaching 3 kids and figured that next week the store would be shut down.  There were only a handful of teachers there and we all talked about how no one has gigs or is making any money so teaching online is our only source of income. We're lucky to have that even.  So many people are instantly out of work.  I read a news article that said this will be as bad as the Great Depression. A co worker at the front desk said he felt vulnerable up there and didn't really think the store should stay open because he is exposed to any germs that might come through. He’s right.  San Francisco area shut down a week ago and LA had shut down everything and put "shelter in place" orders out by Friday the 20th.  A friend in LA texted me that he was working because his company is essential since it's medical.  Cannabis dispensaries were also deemed essential so lucky them, that'll calm the nerves. 

Thursday was a good day of just being home and working on projects and hanging out doing this crazy Princess Leia 1000 piece puzzle that we didn't even get past the border on.  Too much white for her robe! It's so difficult.  I made a hot toddy and a friend called so I Facetimed him to show him the puzzle and Angelica.  Then I went to bed feeling pretty relaxed. 

Friday morning when I took Angelica to the kitchen to let her out the back door I noticed the basement door was open and it usually isn't so I looked down the stairs.  I saw brown mud puddle colored water up to the steps and some strange items floating around like the coffee maker I had put by the stairs in my donate to Goodwill pile.  It took a few seconds to sink in because I was barely awake but I realized the entire basement was under a foot of water!   I heard my roommate's bedroom door open and I was really glad because he usually sleeps late so I went down the hallway and he said "Good morning" and I said "Good morning, have you seen the basement?" he said, "No, why?" I said, "Oh, its bad. There's a ton of water," and he went to look.  I think both of us were just shocked.  The night before there was a tiny trickle of water that ran down the drain so we thought it was ok.  But we had a deluge overnight and he said at 3am he was out in the back yard digging a trench toward the back of the yard to get the water to flow away from the house.  The basement was okay at that time though even through all the rain and 3am trench digging and when he went to bed it was still dry.  So we got 3" in a period of 3 hours and lots of people had flooded basements and part of I-71 was flooded and shut down which is very unusual.  Many parks were flooded and looked like lakes where usually it's just a big open field.  Anything in the basement 1' or lower was soaked.  My suitcases were on the floor because I was getting ready for the art festival in GA that I didn't go to because of Covid-19 so a lot of my merchandise got wet.  I had 8 garbage bags full of wet tshirts and messenger bags and our washer and dryer were submerged so we were afraid to use them until they dried out. I called my friend to see if she could watch Angelica for the day so we could clean it up. I needed to take Angelica for her morning walk though, so I went to Innis Park and it was really flooded. We took a short walk on the part that we could walk on!  Then I dropped her off after hanging out with my friend in her back yard for awhile to visit.  She is focusing on her garden while we are supposed to practice social distancing and not go anywhere.  She was also feeling not ready to do all the online live stream concerts like a lot of other musician friends.  I feel the same way, I'm too worried and still in shock from the harsh reality of this virus being projected to kill 2 million people in the US alone.  If the message is true everyone will know and love someone or several people (maybe many more) who could die by the end of this. 

The flood....

I went back home but stopped at the thrift store to see if they had rubber waders and I lucked out to find cute bright yellow size 8 rubber boots just for me for $8.  When I first arrived in the parking lot I was walking toward the door and a lady got out of her car and we both weren't sure if the store was open and when I tried the door and saw a guy inside I said, "Is it open?" and he smiled and said, "Yeah, come on in." So we shrugged at each other and smiled and I said, "Oh thank goodness" and went in.  It truly felt like a post apocalyptic weird scene, the store was empty except for 4 people.  The lady at the counter was very nice and I told her I was so glad they were open and I really needed these boots.  She smiled and said, "You have a good day." 

Then I got back home and my roommate had already gone out and bought a pump called a water bug that pumps 1300 gallons of water out per hour. I think it pumped water out of the basement for 3 hours. But it worked great and the water was out so we could start cleaning up. 

I rescued some photos in frames that had gotten wet but some were already ruined so I threw a bunch away.  I took the ones I knew I didn't have digital copies of out of the frames and laid them out on the couch to dry. My grandparents in their old mustang convertible, a very old photo of my dad with his siblings, my cousin and I on my pony Black Jack when we were little and some old photos of my son when he was little.

I also found my paper accordian file soaked and I pulled the titles to my car, camper and canoe out of there and laid them out to dry.  The rest was ruined but I decided I didn't need it and the stuff that was gone was already gone.  Several music books were ruined, some notebooks that had NVC (non violent communication) seminar stuff in it I had saved to write about were ruined.  Maybe that's the universe telling me I don't need to relive all those things my ex did that made me try so hard to fix our marriage.  I read a couple of the soaked papers and at one session I was writing about how my husband always says he wants a divorce and won't wear his wedding ring and it really hurts my feelings.  Then he'll change his story completely and say he wants to be with me forever.  When I read that with the ink running and the papers all clumped together I just thought "what a jerk." So maybe its good that I don't have that stuff anymore.  The other thing that was soaked was a story I analyzed in the Compassionate Communications "feelings vs. needs" way when my ex drove us down the center turn lane on High St. in Clintonville really fast chasing an older lady who flipped him off when she turned out of Lucky's Market.  He had cut her off but hadn't seen her so it wasn't like he did it on purpose or anything but she was grouchy and flipped him off.  That set him off and he went into road rage and put me in danger over that!  He chased her from Lucky's to North Broadway which is quite far and he was screaming at her, pulling up beside her, gesturing at her.  She laughed at him at one point and I was just sitting there horrified that I had to go through this.  When I said to him, "Please stop, I don't feel safe." He screamed at me and told me not to question his actions.  I said, "I'm not, I'm telling you how I feel  I don't feel safe." I was trying to use peaceful NVC to reason with a person who had clearly left his own body with rage. I think it works on rational people but I was barking up the wrong tree. 

Anyway, back to the flood story.  My JBL Eon was submerged, one of my sergers, the pedals of the sewing machines and keyboards along with the electric cords, 2 ukuleles, my glockenspiel, the rugs, the couch, a basket with all my cone thread, some CDs but ironically a stack of my ex and my CDs so again another sign from the universe that even our music might have to go.  hmmmmmm.  A box of craft paper bags that I just bought for the art festivals was also soaked.  The worst thing was that the space was so nice and my roommate had just put that really nice wood floor down and now has to tear it up and throw it out so the concrete can dry.  Ugh.  Plus he'll have to cut out 18" of drywall all along the bottom and redo it.  The neighbor is the man who did the drywall and he said he's lived there 18 years and never had a flood but his basement flooded as well.  It was an unusual occurrence that just happened to add more unfortunate stress to all the other bad things happening.  

I've been thinking how horrible I thought 2019 was and now it seems like 2020 is going to beat it!  The song that goes "It's the end of the world as we know it" by REM seems appropriate right now. 

Friday I packed all the wet stuff in the van and took some clothes and dog stuff for Angelica, had dinner with friends C & M which was really nice.  She made pork tenderloin with roasted vegetables served with a glass of wine and it was so lovely spending time with them during this awful pandemic.  We had a fun visit and M was funny because he said he started a diary and so far it said, "Day 1, I'm not gonna make it." He said he hates staying in one place and being cooped up.  He actually travels all the time for work so I can see that driving him crazy.  C joked that she was going to try to get him to dance for TikTok videos (he doesn't do any social media). 

Then I drove Jelly puppy to my mom's in Marion and we started the laundry and settled in to our new space. 

Saturday I was so tired from all the cleaning Friday.  Plus the stress of the virus and the stress of the flood.  My mom kept doing laundry.  I folded tshirts and laid out purses.  She inspected purses that were now partially shrunken in places so need to be taken apart and fixed and then sewn back together.  We joked that we have a year to do it so no hurry.  All the art festivals are definitely going to be cancelled through June and possibly longer. Also, with the economy suffering terribly I don't know how many people will be able to afford art.  Its seeming very bleak.  I went to the grocery in the morning which took me a long time because I don't know this store very well and I had a list of things from my mom that I don't usually buy so I had to hunt for them. It was alright though, not too crowded.  I wanted to get a lot since I talked to a friend and he said prepare, we would probably go into lockdown by the end of the weekend. Then we did a dog walk with my sister and then tried to organize the art festival stuff I brought and finish folding tshirts.  I was so tired the day felt long. 

Sunday we did the dog walk and then I drove my mom, Jelly and I to Columbus so I could get my car and more stuff for my stay.  We took eggs to brother's family and got to see my niece and nephew in their front yard for social distance visiting.  My niece got into OSU but had already committed to Cincy but she could still change her mind.  With the virus scare I wish she'd stay close to home. 

During that visit I got a text from my friend saying Ohio was going into lockdown Monday.  My niece got the same text from one of her friends.  So we found out in that moment.  Next we called my son and daughter in law and asked if we could drive by visit them too and they said sure they were home.  We drove to their house and they had on cute house outfits and my son had on funny narwhal slippers.  They were sweet and got to meet Angelica and I got to visit their dog and cat. I miss them!  I asked if she was on call or actually had to go in to the hospital and she said she had to go there. 

Next we went to my house and my roommate was working away dragging stuff out of the basement and tearing the floor out.  I loaded stuff in my mom's van and she headed back to Marion.  I stayed a little longer trying to remember everything on my list for my isolation stay in Marion.  My roommate and the neighbor were standing in the yard and I told them I'd see them in a few weeks or however long and to stay safe and enjoy their time. He said, "Enjoy your vacation in Marion" jokingly and I said, "Yep, Marion, where dreams go to die," because he always says that about Marion since we grew up there and he didn't like it. Our neighbor cracked up. I can't really hate on Marion because I grew up on a farm and that's pretty fun. 

Then I drove off to do a "drive by egging" to my friend C.  That is just dropping off farm fresh eggs from my mom.  She asked me for baking soda too so I put some in a little baggy.  I saw C for a minute and then kept going.  My friend N had texted so I called her and we caught up for awhile on my drive.  Then I called my other friend J. 

My roommate is going to dry out the basement and clean up stuff while I stay in Marion for the duration of our lockdown. He also started his new job today.  I hope it went well, I'll check in tmrw as I am beat I had a busy day!  I’m still awake and writing and its midnight. Took all the dogs for 2 walks, had a pandemic distanced Bday party for my sister's husband, taught online lessons, made 2 prototype masks for a friend and 3 good ones to send tmrw! I didn’t eat dinner until 8pm! Crazy day even in isolation.  So tired.  It'll slow down I think.  I just need to get settled in here. I really need to sleep now.

March 24, 2020 

Today started out with getting up kinda late 8:30, letting Angelica out, making coffee, doing yoga, eating breakfast, then going for a dog walk.  Then I had to be back for lessons and I taught until 2:00 and then ate lunch and started cleaning the fabric room.  That was an all day thing and I only stopped to go for an evening dog walk out in the field, then came back and made soup for dinner and then went back to working in the room so I can get my stuff organized and out of the sun room.  Now its 10:20 and I'm tired. My friend sent pictures from Tuna Canyon near LA and said there are signs saying that the parks are closing.  Another friend texted that he was working from home and going stir crazy but then leaving Friday to go desert camping in Death Valley for 2 weeks.  That will be wild being out there during a pandemic.  He said its supposed to be closed so shhhh. But the one camp host basically lives out there so I don't think they can make him leave, someone needs to man the station.  My sister works at the hospital in the lab and said work is still quiet and not chaotic yet so that is good but her husband said a little 8 yr old girl in the family that rents one of his houses has the virus.  The neighbor boy came over to finish clearing brush by the road for my mom but that was outside and socially distant so I think that's okay and he also carried some heavy stuff down into the basement but I wiped the door handles down when he was done. The whole thing is very scary.  I just want everyone to survive and be okay.  I think this makes me very grateful for the life I had and I hope I wasn't taking anything or anyone for granted.  Life was good and I guess I still have to say life is good as long as we are all safe and healthy.  I worry about everyone but that doesn't help.  We just have to be smart and not socialize and build up our immune systems so we don't get sick. 

Each day will bring something new and some new twist of fate.  I didn't watch the news today because it makes me nervous and I much prefer looking at the sky or trees or playing with the dogs.  I know Congress is debating what to do financially for the country and Joe Biden is shocked that Trump isn't demanding factories switch over to making masks and protective gear immediately for medical workers.  He is also saying things on Twitter like he'll decide in 14 days which way we go and that he might lift the shelter in place bans which would be a catastrophe.  I liked that Dr. Fauci said when he is in a press conference with Trump he has to resist jumping in front of him and grabbing the mic away.  Trump is not helping and he says crazy shit. Why anyone listens to him is a sad thing and it's only about money or what they're getting out of being a yes man or woman to him. 

March 28, 2020 

Just read a good article called 'Coronavirus Has Upended Our World.  It's OK to Grieve' by Stephanie O'Neill on npr.org. It focuses on grief and my 2 favorite quotes from it were, "It feels like a free-fall, says Francis Weller, "What we once held as solid is no longer something we can rely upon." Then later in the article he states,  "Grief is not a problem to be solved,  it's a presence in the psyche awaiting, witnessing." 

The things we might be grieving are: social connections, habits and habitat, assumptions and security, trust in our systems, sympathetic loss for others. 

Some ways to honor your grief: bear witness and communicate, write, create, express, meditate, be open to joy (let joy and gratitude into your life during these challenging times). 

Ok that's my cliffnotes version. 

Today we went on a dog walk on what my sister calls "chicken shit lane".  My mom explained to me why they call it that: There used to be a chicken farm (big factory type one) back that lane and one year the chickens got a disease and a bunch of them died and they illegally dumped the bodies in piles back that lane and it smelled horrible.  Anyway the whole operation went out of business years ago and the buildings are all gone.  Now it's a nice lane in between 2 big farm fields separated by a big grassy ditch that the puppies love to play along. They are so funny they love the soft long grass for wrestling. 

Now I'm sitting in bed because I just feel tired.  This week was busy and physical.  Yesterday (Friday) my sister and I picked up the fence materials for Angelica's fence outside my sunroom and she hauled them over in the horse trailer.  The neighbor saw her pull into our driveway and stopped to see what she was doing and then proceeded to help us by pounding all the fence posts and putting up the whole fence.  That was so nice!  It would have taken us 3 days if it was just my mom and I.  Earlier we took a long dog walk around the farm buildings and then my mom and I dragged posts and 1 panel from the barn in the golf cart. After the fence building I bathed Jelly and took a shower. My mom and I moved the things in storage out of the sunroom so I can use it. Then I vacuumed all the rooms and cleaned the sunroom out to start making it into a music studio.  It's a nice room.  I was hoping to take down the wallpaper and then when I showed my mom she said how lovely it was and so nice and now I can enjoy the beautiful rabbit wallpaper she loves so much that no one ever gets to see.  She kept saying, "I love this wallpaper," so I guess I have to keep the rabbit wallpaper that looks like an Easter basket of rabbits and flowers.  Oh well.

My sister called and wanted to play Rummikin so we Facetimed her and played Rummikin, it was funny.  She had to take everyone's turn and pick our new tiles and show us our tiles. Glad she won, she had to do all the work. 

Thursday was all about cleaning 2 rooms: the fabric room and the new music room that used to be a storage room. 

Wednesday I taught lessons online and had a regular day of dog walk and then tried to acclimate to my new life. 

March 31, 2020 

Today is Tuesday.  I want to get back into my daily writing.  I did start doing yoga every morning so I'm adjusting. This morning I finished another mask and my mom and I sent all the ones we made for friends. I walked a quick dog walk with my sister after practicing piano.  She said the hospital is very quiet and its kind of eerie because they're waiting for the big surge of patients from the virus.  I said it was like the night before the big battle with the Night King in Game Of Thrones. She laughed and said yes, it's that scary.  Then I had to go back to teach more lessons. I had a zoom call with my friend C in between lessons and we showed each other songs we were working on, tried to sing at the same time and it got very choppy so didn't work and then we just talked about how weird everything is and some funny stuff too.  Then I made chicken soup but had to teach while it was simmering and then got to eat it finally.  It smelled so good!  Now its already 9:30 and I don't feel like doing anything. My goal was to get a will done and make sure all my accounts are TOD to my son. I'm in a slow motion zone where I don't feel like I can do things very fast. 

So if today is Tuesday I'd like to remember what I did yesterday and Sunday.  Let's see, yesterday I taught earlier lessons and the thing that stuck out in my mind was that the family where the husband is a surgeon and the wife is a pediatrician said their business was slow because he can't perform elective surgeries and people aren't bringing their kids in for check ups or really anything much because of the virus.  So even though some medical workers are overwhelmed, others don't have as much business.  I've heard that from another family doctor as well, they are slow too.  The economy is so damaged.  After lessons I think we did a dog walk and then I came back and cut out filters for the masks from the hepa furnace filter we used.  Then I put all the finished masks in envelopes to send the next day as we missed the mail lady already.  I texted with a bunch of people and looked at social media which I've started doing a lot more since isolation started.  It's pretty entertaining since everyone is being funny, creative with live streams and performances and there are good serious articles circulating too.  It's better than usual and more meaningful stuff is being put out. 

The first masks we made. 

Since I cleaned out the fabric room and my mom and I decided to throw out a bunch of fabric scraps we had too many bags for her trash day so we took some to my aunt's and sister's.  After we dropped those off she wanted to drop off a mask in her friend's mailbox so we drove out to her area of the countryside. 

On the way we went past the 3 wind turbines near an industrial area.  We smelled a really bad farm smell like cow manure and my mom said, "Where is that coming from?" I said, "I don't know it smells like cow manure but I don't see any farms." We both kept looking around as the smell seemed to get stronger saying, "That's weird there aren't any farms here." Then I turned around and saw a big pile of puke in front of Angelica who was standing in the back of the van.  She had thrown up the cow poop she ate earlier that morning at the farm.  And my brother in law even said to me that'll be just as gross when it comes back up.  He was serious!  And right.  We started laughing because it was so funny how we kept looking outside for a stinky farm.  She pulled over and I cleaned it up and double bagged it and then used antibacterial wipes which we have all over the place because of the virus, to wipe it up and get rid of the smell.  My mom buys these tropical smelling ones so that is a kind of weird smell for sterilizing things.  Beachy smelling germ killer. We kept driving. 

We passed my high school sweetheart (and first husband)'s old road. I had a huge surge of sadness because I saw the cemetery he's buried in and I started to cry.  (He died in a car accident when he was 22 years old) I vividly remember his family home and spending so much time there. Both of his parents are dead now too.  I wonder if they're buried beside him.  I imagine so.  It was cold yesterday and I was too sad so when my mom asked if I wanted to go to the cemetery I said I do but not right then. He was such a sweet young man who died far too soon.  He loved music, cooking, grew an herb garden, was the first computer programmer I knew since computers were just starting to get used widely.  He was very special. I hate that he didn't get to grow old with the rest of us or have a family. I went from laughing at the puke to crying over my lost first love and best friend. 

We drove past the road and didn't turn down it.  After we dropped the mask off,  she took me to what she calls Woodpecker Pond.  It is a pond that has dead trees sticking out of the water on one edge and lots of red headed woodpeckers live there.  The other cool thing about this pond is the amount of tree swallows that just flutter all over it.  It's so cool, it looks like there are hundreds.  It was like a Disney scene and Snow White should have been there. It was cold and windy so I would like to go back to take pictures when its a little nicer. 

Next we went to this old drained (by collapse) huge man made reservoir.  It was active and people loved it for 30 years or more, fishing and boating and hanging out or walking around it.  Then for some reason it started to collapse in places and the water drained out and overflowed into a nearby river and town as it drained.  It would cost too much to repair it and the city doesn't have the money so part of it was bought by Ducks Unlimited and they built a pond in one spot for ducks.  Other than that you can still walk around it but it looks like a post apocalyptic ruin so its perfect for the pandemic.  Looks like another great photo location.  That was all for yesterday's birding and nature areas tour.  I was tired when we got back and I went to bed and talked to a couple of friends. 

Sunday was sunny, warm and windy and that was the day of a very fun horse ride with my sister.  We both took pics and video and I posted those on social media.  The dogs were so good and just followed along like good ranch dogs.  I really remembered how much I love horses after that second ride.  Brushing Zippy before and after, picking her hooves and putting her away and just that connection with a good horse is so nice.  I was so connected to my best pony ever Black Jack all through childhood.  Then I had a few good years with Rio but then I stopped riding and went to college and never had a horse again.  They are good friends.  Zippy is a trustworthy horse, she feels sweet and reliable.  She's getting older now too.  The fun pics are of us crammed in the truck with the 3 big dogs and of the puppies and Katie walking along with us.  They're really cute. 

Me and Zippy. 

My sister and our dogs. 

The other cool thing about Sunday was how great the cloud show was especially at magic hour when my mom and I took a bird drive to see the Loons in Upper Sandusky.  She talked about On Golden Pond and Kathryn Hepburn's character wants to hear the loons, neither of us could remember the rest of the movie.  I should probably watch it again, I know it won lots of awards.  Anyway we found the loons and took pictures and there was another bird a Grieb of some sort that I luckily got a pic of with a fish in its mouth and that was cool.  We also saw an eagle catch a fish and eat it on the bank of the pond.  That was a great nature preserve too, it was Upper Sandusky something and I want to go back there too.  We drove past a cemetery called Macedonia Cemetery and the lighting was perfect and the headstones were Civil War era and some had fallen down and some were crooked and falling.  It was a great photo op and had a wonderful big old pine tree.  There were so many fields that were lit with pre dusk magic light on gorgeous puffy clouds I took a lot of tree pictures and posted those too.  They're really nice.  I think that was it. 

Macedonia Cemetery. 

Field Oak Trees. My mom and Angelica watching TV.

We also watch a little news everyday but try not to overdo it so we don't get too much anxiety.  We mix in a little Jeopardy, The View, American Idol, this good country vet show, stuff like that.  I talked to my son's dad for a bit.  He's been taking a lot of bike rides and we both look forward to working on music when we can again.  He also said he's been practicing guitar a lot and has enough money to be ok for a month or so, so he's enjoying the free time. 

Yesterday my daughter in law posted that she was so proud of her husband who was working late nights for Cardinal Health getting masks to Battelle for sterilization to help our medical workers on the front lines.  I'm so proud of him.  His logistics degree and work experience led him to be in a very important position during this pandemic!  He's the bomb.  What a great kid.  I texted his dad so he would know.  He said "very cool".