Self-isolation: Day one

Well, I didn’t mean for this blog to become a daily diary of life under COVID-19, but here we are. I should probably be keeping these notes in a physical book somewhere, but this is the routine I’ve set up for myself. Future historians can thank me later. Our family has officially been under isolation since Friday when we pulled the kids out of daycare. We let them outside earlier to play with a couple friends, but not before I went and talked to the other parents, to make sure they were taking this seriously.

Everyone in the house seems to be well now. My youngest still has a phlegmy cough, but it’s not keeping her up at night any longer. I’m better, as is my wife. Our oldest seems to have escaped flu season intact. Hopefully the clerk at the local hardware store didn’t give me anything when he was coughing near me during my last trip out. Thankfully I was able to fix the toilet leak buy twisting the assembly, so another trip to the store is not needed.

It’s not that we’re worried about catching coronavirus, we’re all young and healthy here. I’m more concerned with spreading it. And giving the local authorities more time to prepare their response. No one I talked to, from daycare to school admin, we’re prepared for the possibility that schools were closed. None of the clients I’ve spoken too, including one in sport medicine and the other in dentistry, are considering the possibility that the Governor will soon close all non-essential businesses or institute some sort of quarantine. (My original estimate for lockdown is this Friday.)

My main concern is being an asymptomatic carrier for the disease, and spreading it to someone who’s high risk. I’m glad the university moved classes online because one of my professor seems high risk, they’re over sixty and have diabetes. And for now, we’ll FaceTime our older relatives until we can be sure that we’re not carrying.

The pandemic is really exposing the weakness of the American health and sick leave systems. Stories about companies like Whole Foods asking employees to donate leave are all over the place. And my experience at the hardware store is telling as well. I felt a sort of physical revulsion when the clerk started coughing and I saw how pale and sunken his eyes were. He tried to take a part from me that I was holding, putting his hand right under a screw I was holding out. I didn’t drop it. He put some washers in a plastic bag for me, which I took; I didn’t really know how to act otherwise. I wasn’t about to judge the guy, who knows what his circumstances are.

It’s the food supply chain that I’m most worried about. I haven’t heard any stores about it breaking down anywhere yet, and while we’re stocked up, I don’t want to stop shopping and risk running low. I had planned to go to the grocery today, but after being made aware of the huge risk that store employees are put at, I’ve decided that I’m going to use the online ordering app and just do a store pickup.

Trump announced earlier that he wanted to send checks out to every American, no strings attached. Everything’s being discussed, but the markets are up. Cryptotwitter is bullish since zero-percent interest, QE, and UBI seems very good for BTC. And now we’re in the strange position that some Republicans, namely Mitt Romney and Tom Cotton, are now to the left of the Democratic Party on these matters. Down is up. Up is down. Everything is up for negotiation.

My wife is doing a fantastic job putting together a homeschool program for the kids. She’s got activities for them, and the little one really likes the Khans Academy Kids app. My oldest was offended that she was still on first grade math, but is now a bit frustrated with the second grade level stuff. I picked up a 75-page packet for her from school today, and we’ll get her back on her teacher’s ClassDojo tomorrow to get her on the program.

I don’t feel like I’m getting near as much done. I’m going to bed on time, but getting up later than I normally do. I spent most of the day with the kids, building a fire and roasting marshmallows; wrestling. That’s all that’s important right now, anyways. I’m getting a bit of day job stuff done during the kids’ class time, but who knows what’s going to happen next week if my wife has to go back to work. We shall see.

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