Time and Tide

17 May 2020. A Sunday.
At Home, Somerville, MA

It's been a while since I've written here. Initially I set up this blog just for the train trip that I went on last March. However, I think it's a good time to start writing here again, putting some thoughts down, in a longer format than on Twitter and in a more public way than my diary.

I've been inside my house for 62 days.

Of course this is an exaggeration. I go out and do the grocery shopping, I go outside to check the mail, I've even had to go outside and run an errand at work. I've done some volunteer work, making PPE with Artisans' Asylum. But overall I have by and large been inside my house, sometimes without going outside at all for days at a time. Seeing the same three people day in, day out, doing much the same things, seeing the same places.

None of this is news. To surely almost all of the very small number of people reading this, staying inside has become the norm over the last two months (!), a constant task, a duty, put upon us by the circumstances of a pandemic. But that doesn't make it normal. It's strange, a weirdness, made uncomfortable by the knowledge that I am distinctly privileged to be able to stay home, to protect myself, to protect others.

I went outside today, though. I got help from E.M. to start my car, and I went to pick up a flour order from Elmendorf. Then I just drove around. Already there were more people outside than earlier this year - it was around 68 degrees today, sunny and mild. So strange, to see many things that seem normal, and then to see something - a coronavirus informational placard from the City of Boston, all the masks on most of the people - that reminds one of the present. None of this is novel. It's probably normal for a lot of people.

I'm not sure where I'm going with this post - I think to some extent I am writing to write. At a certain point, a diary just doesn't cut it anymore. But maybe I'll stop for today, and write more later.