365 plus 1

COVID lockdown for us continues. A year and a day and counting.

At home we still maintain a 6-8 week supply of toilet paper and paper towels, and I make sure I have at least four weeks’ worth of the bagged ground coffee I like best (itself a subsitute for the freshly-ground coffee I used to get when I still commuted to work). The freezer stays stocked with meats and ready-to-heat’s. We still wipe down our groceries and restrict our outings. We order in once a week from a local restaurant to help them out.

If we had to we could probably go four weeks on pasta, beans, nuts and other canned goods in the pantry. We did not get into making bread, but we do keep and ample stock of rice. I guess it would be really bad news if something happened to the water supply (not to mention gas and electricity).

We know the difference between N95, KN95 and KF94 masks. We monitor the trend of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths like casualty lists in a conflict. Every encounter with people indoors for more than a few minutes is a ‘Day Zero’ event. We keep ourselves safely distanced from people outside the family, and mask up for our sake and theirs.

The last year has been a demon to family members who love the never-ending parade of consumerism, novelties, and Instagrammable places that were part of life in 2019.

On the other hand, I’ve gotten on snow a reasonable amount this season, had the luxury of enjoying nature in winter, and interacted with other people in a low-risk way. I’ve used the time to learn more about technique and instruction on snow. I bought rollerskis and a pair of nice skate boots, and got back into skate skiing.

We parents still have our jobs, at least for now. No one in the household got Coronavirus, and some have begun the vaccination process.

The hardest part of a difficult journey is near the end, where we loosen our grip on the goings-on. Our desire to see ‘light at the end of the tunnel’ leads us to anticipate a feeling of relief and release ahead of the actuality. It’s a knowable and preventable risk, countered by a refocused attention on executing the process and not cutting corners. As Yogi Berra said: ‘It ain’t over till it’s over’.

Happy Pi day.