Quarantine coffee

Hello there, my socially distanced friends. I’m applauding you from afar as you continue to keep to yourselves. Bravo! Keep it up. It’s working.

I hope you’re still stocked with your coffee of choice. Not easy to get foodstuffs nowadays. At least not if you, like me, are ordering for delivery instead of going to a store. I am getting orders from a local farmers/artisans alliance that has been wonderful. Far more reliable than the Instacarts or Amazons of the world. “Buy local” has taken on a whole new meaning for me.

Let’s start with this: I wore a linen dinner napkin to FedEx last week. And those are words I promise you I never thought I’d say. I cobbled together a makeshift face mask from a diagram my sister sent me, using the ugly brown linen napkins that I must have bought (with my eyes closed) many moons ago. They’re going in the Goodwill pile as soon as this lockdown is over. That much is for sure.

Bizarre times. But I’m doing it. Trying to do my part.

And speaking of doing your part, anyone else find they are reevaluating their social set? I know people still trying to date during this pandemic. Or people who run out to the store just because they miss their diet soda. Others who deal with the situation through really crass jokes on social media. And still others who make anyone trying to follow more stringent directives about isolating sound like glorified sissies. I really don’t understand people who can’t just park their sweet asses at home for a month or more. Especially given the consequences for others if they don’t. ‘nough said.

Speaking of parking your sweet ass at home—we all deal with it in our own way, right? I joked with my older sister that we are channeling our dad during this time. My dad kept our house shipshape with military precision. He believed you should be able to bounce a quarter off the sheets and pass a white glove test in every nook and cranny of your home. So, in addition to finding myself wearing a dinner napkin, I’ve also found myself cleaning every tiny crystal on my chandelier. The inside of my refrigerator has never sparkled like it does now. And, shockingly, this less-than-techie gal installed a mesh wifi router. Suddenly, my Ring doorbells work like clockwork and my son finally can turn the basement into a gaming man cave. All the things I usually avoid are staring me in the face—and I’m tackling them with relish.

The frenzy of activity is my way of asserting some control over an uncontrollable, unpredictable situation, of course. I worry about my friend who is still delivering babies, my family member who practices anesthesiology and has begun emergency intubations for coronavirus patients. I know people who have lost a parent—who weren’t able to be by their side and now must grieve alone because there can’t be a funeral service. And as a divorced mom who parents oh-so-differently from my ex, I worry about what would happen to my kiddos if something happened to me. No sense sitting too long with those anxious thoughts, but I’m sure some of you are experiencing the same. A huge virtual hug to you. Try not to cope with it all by scarfing down local homemade cherry pie. I’ll cop to doing that sometimes . . . but let’s not make it a habit. I do not want to be the size of my house when I finally can leave my house.

I welcome any and all book, movie, TV series and documentary suggestions. The 1000-piece jigsaw puzzle I’ve begun is enough to drive a right-brained woman insane. Help me out here, folks.

I want to hear about your life during this strange time. Give me a shout-out and an update, won’t you?

I’ll leave you with this, thoughts from singer/songwriter Paul Williams. I love this perspective. And my tender heart is holding on to how many of us are distancing with love:

“When you go out and see the empty streets, the empty stadiums, the empty train platforms, don’t say to yourself, ‘It looks like the end of the world.’ What you’re seeing is love in action. What you’re seeing, in that negative space, is how much we do care for each other, for our grandparents, for the immuno-compromised brothers and sisters, for people we will never meet.

People will lose jobs over this. Some will lose their businesses. And some will lose their lives. All the more reason to take a moment, when you’re out on your walk, or on your way to the store, or just watching the news, to look into the emptiness and marvel at all of that love.

Let it fill and sustain you. It isn’t the end of the world. It is the most remarkable act of global solidarity we may ever witness.”

Sending love through the ether to you and yours.

54 Comments Add yours

  1. These are strange times that we are living in Kay, times that seem to defy description, oscillating between equal parts numbness and angst.

    1. candidkay says:

      Indeed. Am trying to find the joy in the moment . . . stay well . . .

  2. I am a month late to your coffee share but I am so happy to read it. I hope you have watched read and cleaned heaps during this period.

    1. candidkay says:

      I have!! Thank you. Good to hear from you!

  3. Librarylady says:

    Hi Kay, I love your blog, very professional looking. I too am amazed that people make such a fuss about social distancing and wearing masks. Does it help to do these things? Who knows, but let’s try It for crying out loud.! If in the long run it was dumb, O.K. what did we lose.? If as I suspect it was helpful, all the better.
    We love the mystery series called Shakespeare and Hathaway. Well done and often funny. Perfect for these times.

    1. candidkay says:

      Thanks so much for visiting and commenting. I guess I have too many friends who are doctors are in the medical field. I am sure what we are doing is helping. I do believe the science of it. So it baffles me when people protest against something that, while slightly restrictive, makes good scientific sense. Thank you so much for the recommendation! I will have to check out that series :-).

  4. Roy McCarthy says:

    Good to hear from you Kristine. As to coffee, I’m supporting my corner independent shop right now, but I had to sneak off and queue at the Co-Op for my favourite all-day brand.

    The only gripe I have with our restrictions is that, at age 65, you’re suddenly classed as ‘vulnerable’ and, as a consequence, are deemed unable to volunteer to lend a hand.

    Oh, and I wish people would just ignore the asshats who are bending/ignoring the rules. There’s np point in stressing over it.

    Stay safe.

    1. candidkay says:

      Glad to hear you’re well, Roy! And that you’re getting your favorite coffee:). And I very much try to ignore the ones who aren’t playing by the rules–but it’s so hard sometimes. As I walk my dog, it always seems to be a pair of 30- or 40-something women walking inches apart and coming up on our heels–with no regard for distancing or alternate paths. Ugh.

  5. George says:

    I always look forward to your words, Kristine and once again, I’m not disappointed. The words of Paul Williams also struck a chord. I believe most people are trying to do the right thing for all those who are on the front lines of this craziness. I’m sure everyones homes and yards will be well tended or they will be disaster zones, depending on how one is approaching this whole thing. What I think will be equally interesting is how we begin to poke our heard out of the rabbit hole once this is over. Some will jump right out while others take a few steps at a time. It should be interesting. Take care of yourself and stay well.

    1. candidkay says:

      That’s so kind of you, George. I have been feeling less than inspired to write lately and so comments like yours help keep me going. It is interesting to see how people go through this and I am trying so hard not to judge it. I don’t mind generally when people are stupid in their own lives. But when their stupidity affects others, I get a little upset. Here’s hoping that we all come through this kinder and wiser. Stay well and keep writing :-).

  6. Dale says:

    Always a pleasure to read you, Kristine. It’s been quite the experience, hasn’t it? It blows my mind how everyone one AROUND THE WORLD is living the same thing, to one extent or another.
    I am hoping the urge to actually do those productive things kicks in… I’m figuring it will any day now 😉

    1. candidkay says:

      Aw, thank you, friend.❤️ I appreciate the kind words. And yes – I don’t think it’s a coincidence that all of us are having to go through the same thing. I think it’s meant to make us wiser and bring us together. I am sure the urge to do productive things is going to kick in with you. And by the way, those gorgeous dinner so you’ve been making our productive. My chandelier may be sparkling but my dinners have not looked like yours!

      1. Dale says:

        I truly want to believe that this pushes the world in general into a new positive direction. I know it’s probably wishful thinking but hey…

        As for the meals – I am happiest in the kitchen and have been feeling the lack for so long. This has been so wonderful to share at least one meal per day with the boys. And it has also been pushing me to look for an alternate line of work. What? I’ve no clue…

      2. candidkay says:

        And here’s where I’m hoping the universe serves that answer up to you on a SilverPlatter. We should all wake up with some joy about what we are doing that day. I think a lot of us are realizing that we don’t :-).

      3. Dale says:

        I really don’t. Much as I am good at the whole serving thing, my feet are not pleased. And I dunno… it’s just missing something for me. So.. c’mon Universe! I’m listening.

  7. srbottch says:

    I thoroughly enjoyed Paul William’s words. And John Howell always leaves positive comments. We’re hunkered down here, too, being in the group that gives us a good reason to keep our asses in place and let other people do our shopping. I’m getting used to it. We were ‘hunkering’ anyway after my wife slipped on her own ass (icy) and broke her wrist, then surgery and …oh, my. But, in the process, I have learned to preheat an oven (not that hard). I think I’m getting grumpier as I wag my finger at clumps of folks walk-in too close to each other. And then, just to make life a bit more miserable, the spring on my dishwasher door broke and I’ve had to adjust my entire method of opening/closing the damn thing. But it still washes and I don’t have to go down to the river and beat stuff in rocks…oh, wait, that’s clothes, isn’t it. I love your posts because they give me so much fodder to open up my mind and let whatever comes out to come out. I’m glad you’re managing and doing so many projects. You’ve inspired me…I think I’ll drop my intention of wearing the same sweater everyday until this calamity ends. Have a GREAT day!

    1. candidkay says:

      I am so sorry that your wife broke her wrist and had to have surgery! But I am very glad that it happened before this whole pandemic hat. A hospital is the last place you want to be if you don’t have to be right now. And I’m also very glad that your dishwasher break was just a sprain and not something like a hose. I’m expecting an update from you :-). With your new found resolution, I want to know if your chandelier is sparkling or if you finally cleaned out that closet😉

      1. srbottch says:

        We don’t have a chandelier but the toilets are so shiny that we don’t even want to use them…🙀🤪

  8. Happy Easter!! I enjoyed your post, Kristine.

  9. You’re doing it right! Wish I could channel your father through my husband. He’s not a cleaner unless he’s having a friend over for dinner. And he’s loathe to throw anything away in general. I try to keep my focus on all the people stepping up and doing good. And when the world gets to be too much, I hug my son and binge watch either Schitts Creek or NCIS.

    1. candidkay says:

      Oh, Schitts Creek Is definitely a tonic for the time. I love that show. I know you and your husband will figure it out. But my friends and I have talked about how many divorces may come out of this quarantine. If people can actually afford to get them when it’s done. It’s either going to bring people closer together or make them realize they really aren’t suited for each other😲

  10. And to you and yours, K! Happy Easter!

    1. candidkay says:

      Happy Easter, Cynthia! Hope you are enjoying that beautiful house and garden of yours today. ♥️

  11. It will be interesting to look back on all this and see how we all got through it. Most of the people I know have done what they’re supposed to do without much complaint. I work from home, so that’s different, but otherwise, it’s not too much different than normal life – we’ll see how long it goes on….But I’m looking at it positively, I’ve painted 3 paintings this weekend alone!

    1. candidkay says:

      Wow! Three paintings in a weekend is pretty prolific, Andrea. Kudos to you. And I understand what you’re saying. I work from home also. Part of my routine has not changed. I do know a lot of people who are doing what they’re supposed to be doing but I also know a lot of people who think they’re social distancing wow completely getting the rules wrong. I’m trying to focus on the former :-). Happy Easter!

  12. mydangblog says:

    Great post, Kristine–it’s strange times indeed, but the sun is shining and the dog is looking for cuddles, so it could be worse. So you installed a router–what name did you give it? Hope it’s something funny;-)

    1. candidkay says:

      The sun makes such a difference in my mood! I was sitting out in it this morning and now the cloud cover has come in. Just not the same. And yes, a dog looking for cuddles is just about the best thing ever. I wish I could say we gave the router some ingenious name, but we didn’t. We were in get down to business mode and had it installed in 10 minutes or less :-). That’s the piece that made me the most happy.

  13. markbialczak says:

    I still have a M-F 8:30 to 4 library-tasks-at-home work schedule to keep my mind quite occupied (and financial anxiety down), Kay, and that works to my benefit, Kay. My dear wife, though, has been furloughed, so she’s the one who has been finding (and accomplishing) the been-put-off tasks to tackle around our home.
    I find our 4 p.m. walks around the neighborhood very nourishing to our feeling of community. Many people are out in pairs, all keeping their distance from us. And there are many hellos from folks sitting in front of their homes, too, a feeling of we’re-all-in-this that was not quite as prevalent, say, last spring.
    We continue to follow the rules, wear our masks out for essential trips, and hope, hope, hope.
    Good wishes to you and yours, Kay. Happy Easter.

    1. candidkay says:

      Happy Easter, Mark! I am glad to hear you’re still working. I work virtually all the time, so this is not very different from my norm in that respect. And I have been super busy but I’m trying, I guess, to fulfill both roles – breadwinner and chief cook and bottle washer. That, too, it’s no different from the norm. I’m so glad you and your wife have each other for support and for walks :-). Stay well!

      1. markbialczak says:

        You always play so many roles so well, Kay. I admire you then and now. Be well, my friend.

      2. candidkay says:

        Aw, thank you, Mark. I truly kind thing to say.😊

  14. David says:

    Beautiful sentiments and a post that is spot on.

    1. candidkay says:

      Thank you! Stay well and good.🙏🏻

  15. Beautiful words indeed Kristine, it is very, very much an act of love 😀 ❤️ 🙏🏽 🦋
    People at the moment are being asked to look a little deeper, ask of themselves what has meaning and what doesn’t. It isn’t like our older generation with the impact of a war and all that it means but a more subtle profound question of our belief in ourselves.
    I look outside and this unusual clear air, sounds of birds and most of all that constant hussle and bussle of everyday stress is no longer there. And within that most are finding that lack asking them to look within, the one place that hussle and bussle was covering.
    And within that is the realisation that in fact we don’t really miss it. Yes it had that constant human interaction but of what worth…really worth.
    It will never be the same, change never is. But in asking us to take a new step it is asking us to make a decision, a step with more worth of who we are now becoming or the step of safety, to try to stay in a known but less appealing place.
    Truthfully I think we will not be given a choice simply because we cannot take back what we now know. It changes us and begins a new journey. And within this, and like the words above have said, ‘it isn’t the end of the world’ but in fact a new one.
    Let’s make it the best one we can, let go what wasn’t built from the heart and release this old, uncaring way of being to begin a new way, this time from what we are now beginning to see…a loving, caring world that has been waiting for its chance to be set free ❤️ 🙏🏽 🦋

    1. candidkay says:

      I love The bird song as I walk the dog in the morning. I love the intense quiet. It feels a different sort of quiet than before. And like you, I cannot help but think that that is a good thing. A New World would certainly Be an improvement. I am hoping that human goodness and wisdom win out over some of the other things were seeing right now. I really think they will, deep in my heart.

  16. Karen Lang says:

    I think we are all assessing what we were doing before Corona changed our lives. I decided to create a temple in my home ha! 🙏🏻 I put out candles each day. Meditate more and listen to music and people that inspire me. And watch less news and social media. It all helps keep a calm within. I’m making sure I walk more too. But like everyone, a Netflix binge is called for every now and then. 🤩 Great post! Keep doing your beautiful writing and being you! 💚💕

    1. candidkay says:

      Ooh, I love the temple bit😀. Something about sacred space that calms us no matter where it is. I am so glad that you are staying centered. Although I am absolutely not surprised. Stay well and many blessings to you.💕

  17. Your posts are so easy to read – like an old fashioned letter from a friend. I live in Alberta, Canada with my hubby and my cat. My daughter came to visit before the pandemic struck and is still here. I am so grateful for that. Hubby would be considered on of the high risk people for covid-19 and it scares the crap out of me. Most of the time I am okay, really, but I have had a panic attack or two while out shopping for grub. The idea of bringing the virus home to him is terrifying. He’s a diabetic, on dialysis and has limited lung capacity and whole slew of other stuff. It’s complicated. So, other than his dialysis appointments he doesn’t go ANYWHERE! I do any shopping that must be done. My daughter usually comes with me. I don’t know how I’d manage without her I am sure I would, but having her here with us has lowered my anxiety levels considerably.

    I write a fair bit on my blog and read other people’s blog posts. I loved yours because it’s kind of cool hearing how other people are managing through this. You seem like you have it altogether. Hang in there and stay safe.

    1. candidkay says:

      Oh, what a kind response to this post. Thank you. Particularly since your focus on others is doubly admirable given the big concerns on your mind. I completely understand why you can be terrified at times right now. All of us know people who are at risk and even those who don’t appear to be at risk can be. It sounds like you are taking every precaution. I will keep you and your family in my prayers and I am so very Thankful that your daughter is with you. It matters so much. Now is not a time for anyone to feel like they are alone. Stay well. Sending you a hug through the ether.

      1. Aw thanks so much, Kay, prayers are always welcome. 🙂 I did enjoy reading your post – I’ll be back!!!! Happy Easter, please stay safe and healthy. Sending big hugs right back.

  18. Su Leslie says:

    I’ll know I really have cabin fever when cleaning the house seems like a good way to spend time. I work from home and am fairly unsociable, so in many ways life just goes on. There are way more people out walking my neighbourhood than I’ve ever seen before, and queuing at the supermarket is weird, but certainly here in NZ the measures being taken seem to be helping. I am afraid for my elderly parents whom I can’t visit and for my son’s future though.

    1. candidkay says:

      Oh, you have such a proactive prime minister in New Zealand! So there’s that. And I hear you on the working from home. I do also, and am very busy with work. But am finding it more important than ever to distance from work for periods to keep my sanity. I will keep your parents in my prayers–and I’m hoping that when we get through this, we’re all more cognizant of creating a better future for our kids We’ll see.

  19. Not coffee for me… I’m drinking mint tea, and you should see how much Amazon has upped the prices by! Still hopefully lockdown won’t be for ever. Take care 🙂

    1. candidkay says:

      Oh, man. The prices. Yes. Every time I get a grocery order, I look at the bags versus the bill and shake my head. Yikes. Stay well!

  20. We have both extremes at my house. Hubby must constantly be doing something productive, while I’m perfectly content sitting around doing videogames or catching up on my blog reading. So, hubby finished updating the kitchen, and I then wrote about it. Worked out well for both of us. If we’re in lockdown long enough, maybe the living room/dining room combo will finally get painted.

    1. candidkay says:

      Oh, you’re not alone in that wish! I have friends who keep saying, “If the lockdown can just last another month, we might have the house in good shape.” 🙂 Sounds like you’re the yin to his yang. It works!

  21. Thanks Kristine. I’m glad you’re adapting to lockdown. Oddly I’m working and busy so mostly I work and rest. Take care.

    1. candidkay says:

      Me too. Really busy. Haven’t had the time to reflect and slow down that many are having. But the mortgage remains, etc. Thankful for the work right now! Glad to hear you’re doing well also.

      1. Thanks and glad you’re working too.

  22. suemclaren24 says:

    We are witnessing and living through a paradigm shift. What we make of it, how it affects our lives over time, is entirely up to us. Individually.

    1. candidkay says:

      I do agree. Although I hope that many wise individual transformations will lead to a sea change collectively. Stay well!

  23. I enjoyed your post, Kristine. It could be much worse than wearing a linen napkin. I saw a photo of a woman wearing a sponge held on with a rubber band. Talk about laugh out loud funny. I have been in place for over a month and can’t say I’m feeling any strain. I guess my type A personality has finally joined the rest of me and is going with the flow. I can’t say my life is much different. When I retired from the business world in 2012, I took up writing full-time. So six books later I guess my routine is pretty much Howard Hughesian. The fact that my immune system is compromised from medial infusions and I have an excellent case of asthma makes me glad. Stay well to stay on my ass at home. Stay well and don’t forget to dust under the lamps.

    1. candidkay says:

      Oh, John! Under the lamps. You got me. Hadn’t thought of that:). I’m glad you continue to stay well and at home. I do believe this will eventually pass and while you and I are pretty introspective to begin with (like most of our writing brethren), I think it won’t do harm for a lot of folks to look inward instead of outward for a bit.

      1. Excellent thought. I wish more would take the shelter in place advice more seriously. Well, on an introspection note I think I will continue to avoid them. Happy Easter, Kristine.

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