Early on, there was a slow trickle of information on the coronavirus, but when the storm blew into our world it was a full-on gale. And even though we fancy ourselves as good planners, the pandemic and subsequent lockdown caught us totally by surprise.
It’s now been six weeks of isolation, and more and more we find ourselves thinking: If we had only known …
Luckily, the two of us are healthy, and we’re comfortable in our small apartment so we have no serious complaints. But still, looking back we might have done a few things differently.
1. Restaurant Regrets: Our last restaurant meal was lunch at a fast-food burger joint. Had we realized that it might be our last chance to dine out for months we would have eaten like it was our last meal on death row. Bring me one of everything! If we had only known.
2. Foraging for Food: As the virus made its first jump outside China, we were two weeks from departure on a month-long trip to South Africa. As always before a long trip, we were eating our way through the refrigerator and pantry and deliberately not re-stocking supplies. So when the stay-at-home order came, our stripped-bare pantry had us scrambling around town with the hoarders like prepper wannabes. If we had only known.
3. Snatching up Toilet Paper: We’ve read opinions from economists and clinical psychologists explaining why the world hoarded TP when this whole business started. But take it from people who know, it’s easy to feel superior to TP hoarders when you have a few rolls. If it wasn’t a priority before, it certainly is now. If we had only known.
4. Puzzle Price Gouging: Even before the lockdown, we were fans of jigsaw puzzles, so we had a few on hand. But given all the bored-at-home crowds, the law of supply and demand kicked in, and the online price of puzzles shot into the stratosphere. One of our daily chores is checking Amazon for new shipments before they zoom off the cyber shelf. If we had only known.
5. Hug-Deprived: There are huggers and non-huggers, and after a few hug-less weeks, we know where we fit. We get lots of hugs at home of course, but when it comes to family and friends we really miss a warm embrace. In fact, we think that hugs are one of the “bear” necessities.
6. Sacrificed Air Fares: As we mentioned, our South Africa trip was cancelled, and a travel world in chaos as well as non-refundable plane tickets mean we may or may not be able to use them before expiration dates. Major bucks are involved, so we’re keeping our fingers crossed, but we’re not terribly hopeful. If we had only known.
7. The Bandana Shortage: There’s always an old bandana stuffed in the bottom drawer somewhere … isn’t there? It took a pandemic and face mask shortage to teach us that sometimes one can be a tad overzealous in downsizing. If we had only known.
8. Face-Rubbing Habit: You never miss it ’til it’s gone. When we see the backside of Covid-19 we’re going to scratch our noses and rub our eyes every chance we get. If we had only known.
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Is it unshorn locks, cracked nails, or an urgent need for a tattoo? What would you have done if you’d only known?
Good Health and Happy Trails,
James & Terri