I’m still around. But, I wasn’t for a while. Yann and I–like everybody else–had to scale back our vacation plans for the year. We still wanted to leave town, so the obvious option was to spend a week on the mainland, where there are more people, and consequently, more infected people.
Our vacation included a few non-vacationy activities. I got my hair cut, skin pumped full of pigment, and made a trip to Ikea.
The fond memories tied to the Langley house mentioned in my last post mostly happened outside the house rather than inside it.
My parents made the decision to relocate to Langley in 1995 after my siblings moved out to free me from a life of continued isolation.
There, I was within walking distance from my school and eight deaf kids with whom I had varying degrees of friendship.
It was the best thing they’d ever done for me. I could have done without the big house with the 800-gallon fish tank in the rec room, hot tub, pristine living room carpet, a backyard that was a mushroom paradise, and so on.
None of that mattered as much as being close to my friends.
We are all limited as to what kind of goals we can set for ourselves right now. My fitness routine is restricted to what I can do with a yoga mat, a set of 8-pound weights, and the hangboard we mounted above our bedroom door frame last month. It seems iffy to be leaving our neck of the woods to do some moderate-distance cycling. Even if we go for 4-hour walks, I’m finding that I’ve been spending most of my time on the couch, perfecting that ass groove.
If only I had the inspiration to tackle a new art project.
The most inspiring person I’ve seen in the past week is my across-the-street neighbour who comes outside on his front porch to toot his gold vuvuzela every day at 7pm. Obviously, I can’t hear his masterful vuvzelling, but I can appreciate how he surveys his surroundings when he comes out, “I hope nobody sees me do this,” then gets in position.
I know the point is to thank all the health care workers and that many people are creating their own noise of thanks. To me, it looks like it’s just this one guy tooting away.
I’m starting to feel one of the side effects of COVID-19: Cabin Fever. I’ve become acclimatized to a very narrow range of temperatures of 18-20ºC. The only time I don’t see Yann is when he uses the washroom, and sometimes I go in there just to be alone. I’ve been experimenting with aerating my meals, making egg soufflé and soufflé pancakes, which I then pair with a glass of club soda. Yeah, I have a lot of air in my diet. (And cat hair. I cleaned out the fridge yesterday. HOW DID THAT MUCH CAT HAIR END UP INSIDE THE FRIDGE?)
On Monday, I stepped outside for the first time since the 12th to the mailbox. It was a brisk jaunt around the neighbourhood lasting about fifteen minutes. I made it back home without coughing in public.
The next day, I had a proper outing when Yann and I went down to the beach with the binoculars. Five minutes into settling on the edge of the concrete walkway, I was looking at an eagle and a seal within the same field of view. A little later, we saw an Anna’s hummingbird hanging out in the bushes. What a treat! Until we realized that the beach was also teeming with teenagers drinking out of thermoses and throwing pebbles at each other because that’s what teenagers do when they’re not getting an education. Our reaction was more or less this: