Positivity took a bit of a slump yesterday. I woke up way before the birds and lay awake thinking about the coronavirus pandemic. I’m not usually a worrier, but these are not usual times. And this is not our usual Mallorca.
What would happen if The Boss or I showed symptoms of the virus? I made a mental note to make up the guest-room bed, so that if one of us had to self-isolate, we could do so immediately, without the hassle of having to ready the room in a hurry.
My mind was also whirring with concern for my dad, who lives alone in the UK and not close to any of his family. After the latest gloomy news from the UK, I decided to contact Dad later in the morning, when I was sure he’d have completed his ablutions, daily exercises (impressive), and eaten his breakfast.
In addition, The Boss’s aunt – who is 96 years old – is in a Birmingham hospital with a chest infection, after her carer found her collapsed at home last week. Would today be the day we’d receive her coronavirus test results?
When the alarm went off, worrying was off the agenda. I’m currently producing some daily coronavirus bulletins for Mallorca Sunshine Radio and the first goes on air at 8:30am. No lingering in bed, sipping my morning mug of hot water and lemon, for the time being. I have to fire up the laptop (always a tad sluggish first thing), squeeze into my wardrobe studio, and wake up my voice. Would you like to hear me yodel? No, I thought not.
After an exchange of emails with one of my brothers, The Boss and I Facetimed my dad (thank you, Apple) and, as usual, found him in good spirits and looking healthy. Dad was a child during WWII and experienced far greater deprivations than the ones facing us now.
He’s arranging online shopping for food and essentials and I spent some time researching a milk-delivery service for him. Yes, doorstep milk deliveries are coming back into favour in the UK and, environmentally, that’s positive news: glass bottles and electric delivery vehicles. The social aspect of daily deliveries to homes is also reassuring: if the previous day’s milk is still on the step, the milkman (or woman) will know there’s a problem.
Between us, my brothers, and all my nieces, we should each be able to give Dad some daily interaction. In this period of ‘social distancing’, any contact with the world beyond our own four walls is important.
At Least, Trying to Keep Contact
By midday, when I was preparing the lunchtime radio bulletin, the Internet was creaking under the weight of demand. With all educational establishments in Mallorca closed since Monday, children and students are largely learning online. Added to that load are the adults who are working online at home or trying to fill their days with one of a gazillion activities facilitated by the Internet.
The Highlights of Lockdown Day 3
- The Boss’s aunt’s test results came back negative for the coronavirus. Phew.
- Feeling that I was doing something useful by researching some things to help Dad through this crisis.
- I learnt to make sauerkraut, watching an online class. I had a gut feeling it would be a good idea (probiotic humour).
- Watching a YouTube video of a local opera singer on his Palma apartment balcony, entertaining his neighbourhood with a rendition of ‘O Sole Mio http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ffpLosAFKI
- Baking a batch of shortbread biscuits (which our crazy-thermostat oven didn’t burn). And comfort-eating most of them with The Boss.
My Top Tip of the Day
Don’t watch or listen to any of the current depressing news coverage after dinnertime. Not if you want a decent night’s sleep.
Jan Edwards ©2020