Saturday, March 14, 2020
Like so many, I am deeply upset about COVID-19. I apologize in advance if anything sounds like I am coming across like a selfish baby. I know that others have it much worse than I do. Nobody in my household has the virus (at least not yet). I have been working from home since September, so at least short term, there is no financial impact. Most of the school districts near me (including my own) have closed school for at least two weeks, but that doesn't directly affect me since my children are grown.
But in spite of that, I am affected (again, I am sorry if I come across as selfish and offend anyone). The biggest bummer at the moment is that I was supposed to see Elton John in concert on April 11. I am 99.99% sure that the concert is cancelled. The mayor of NYC (where the concert is supposed to take place) has banned all gatherings of 250+ people. Broadway is closed until April 13. I have not heard officially that the concert is cancelled, but unless they decide to reopen the venue early, it obviously is. I just hope that it is rescheduled. I am very disappointed though it certainly is nobody's fault, and the decision to close large venues is a responsible one.
Last Sunday I decided to buy an extra case of toilet paper. I went to Costco, and they didn't have any. Actually, Costco seemed to be pretty much out of a lot of things. I went back the next day and did manage to get a case. There was a limit of two, but I only bought one, as I already have some on hand, and I am hoping that the shortage will be short-lived. I only got it because I am paranoid about running out of toilet paper, and it is obvious that other people's actions are creating a shortage. I am going to have to come to grips with the fact that we need to stockpile some food in the house. And I am dreading it. We've tended to be day-to-day with our food shopping, and that just won't fly anymore, especially if stores continue to be so crowded and it takes very long to check out. If tomorrow doesn't work out, I intend to go to the store early Monday morning, when hopefully things are restocked and not yet wiped out.
My son has been coaching college basketball (junior college and NAIA) for several years. Last year, his boss (the head coach) was fired at the end of the season, which meant he was, too. That's generally the way it goes. He came home from Florida to NJ. He was not able to get another job for a bunch of reasons. Apparently his old boss did not have a good reputation. In any case, he took a volunteer position with a local high school (a very prestigious program). For a non-paying position, it actually worked out very well. He just loves the head coach. It is possible that the coach is going to be offered a college coaching position soon and has asked David to come with him. Not as an assistant coach (which would be the best option) but as a special assistant, which would still be great. If not, I think the high school is going to offer him a teaching position so he can stay with the program and make some money. But he went out to Las Vegas on Wednesday to follow some of the college basketball tournaments and hopefully make some connections (which was a real possibility). But alas, the whole NCAA March Madness has been cancelled. So he came home yesterday, three days early. What a waste!!
My husband's 70th birthday is on March 27. In September we were invited to a surprise 75th birthday party for his cousin, and my daughter got the idea to have a surprise party for him. For a variety of reasons it would have been extremely hard. Instead, we celebrated two weeks ago at a restaurant where it is virtually impossible to get reservations (but I managed to get one). He made it very clear that this was what he wanted, so when I managed to get the reservation, I took it. I invited his brother and sister, which I normally wouldn't do, in addition to our kids. Everything worked out great. As it now turns out, the reasons why it would have been hard to have a party no longer exist (they are all related to sports which have been cancelled, including the NCAA tournament). However, with COVID-19, it is possible that if I had actually planned a party in a restaurant that it would have been cancelled by either the restaurant or by law (so far not the case but who knows what will happen in the next week or two) and that some of the invitees would have decided not to come. We are anticipating a more significant family celebration in June, but again, who knows if it will take place.
Tomorrow marks the second anniversary of my mother's death, right after her 90th birthday. She was living in a senior independent living facility. They served dinner every weeknight, and the residents were strongly discouraged from skipping the meal or taking it in their apartment unless they were ill. I wonder if they are doing it now and if they are allowing visitors. I think I would have been able to see her because she could have met us outside the building, and I could have brought her over to my house or taken her out for dinner, but who knows.
I can probably think of a few more examples. I have only been to the gym once this week because of my busy schedule, but I am getting a little nervous about going there. They closed the library in town along with the schools, and I maybe I could use a good book at this point.
It's the new normal, and I don't like it. At least today we went down to the shore for a couple of hours and walked around, which was nice. We almost didn't go because it was very breezy this morning, and I was afraid it might be cold. Who knows if it will be possible to do this again anytime soon. Last week I never would have imagined that the NCAA tournament would be cancelled and that the spring sports seasons are in jeopardy. The latter will create definite financial impact if it happens because my husband and son both officiate high school girls' lacrosse, which normally keeps them very busy and is quite lucrative. My husband is the treasurer of his local officials' chapter. Today the chapter president planted the possibility that they have collected a lot of dues money from the other officials and will likely have to refund much of it if the season is cancelled. Since there is no precedent, they are not sure how it will be handled.
Again, I apologize because I know that others have it worse. But I just need to vent.