Self Quarantine: Day 5

We’re all homeschoolers now

Efforts to remain completely isolate have failed. After talking to several of the parents on the street, we’ve decided to let our kids play. There’s five families, about ten kids in all. Most of us are staying home during this first week, but three of the parents work at one of the local hospitals. That’s not including my wife, who works at the hospital, but isn’t in the medical field, and hasn’t been in this week.

That could all change next week. The government agency that she works for is not managing this crisis well. Federal leadership has made some proclamations about non-essential personnel, social distancing, and large groups, but the local leadership’s willingness to follow this is questionable. And with whistleblower protections and union activisism at a nadir during these times, it seems likely that there’s any recourse for her to try to exercise her rights. Anyways, my wife doesn’t like me discussing her professional activities in this forum, so I’ll leave that alone.

Speaking of unions, it seems that the federal workers unions are focused on TSA employees, who are “dropping like flies” according to my wife. Her father has been overseas, working in the Middle East for the past few months, and has been trying to decide whether to come home. Yesterday, the State Department put out an advisory calling for all US citizens to come home or “be prepared to stay abroad indefinitely.” He’s not in the best of shape, but will probably risk coming home, since he’s been staying in a small apartment while he’s been working, and has a large home in the mountains that I’m sure he’d much rather be at.

My father is currently under self-quarantine. My stepsister’s daughter has had flu-like symptoms, so his work has told him to lockdown. He’s retiring in less than fifty days. “You picked a hell of a time to retire,” I told him the other day on the phone. I worried he wasn’t going to take things seriously but apparently he’s all stocked up on frozen food and beer.

I haven’t had any alcohol since last Wednesday. I had the usual sleep issues, and have been overcompensating with caffinee and chocolate. Managed to get a couple of two and a half mile runs in lately, but haven’t made time to do any weightlifting. We made a run to the grocery store two days ago to restock; I used the internet ordering to avoid going in the store. The clerk who brought my stuff out seemed in good spirits. The store was completely out of bread, so we bought flour.

Yesterday’s baking did not go as planned. I had the kids help prepare the ingredients, let them start the mixing while I explained how yeast works, then I turned out the dough on the table before they ran off to play. A couple of days ago, I asked my wife to cook a chicken I had brined, and she made a bit of a mess with the oven. I had put the bird on a rack pan to let it dry from the brine, and she decided to put a piece of aluminium foil on top of the rack to keep it clean. While the bird was in the oven, the drippings ran over the side of the pan and onto the bottom of the oven. I thought I we had burnt the bird when the house started filling up with smoke, but it actually came out good. I had forgotten about the mess when I went to bake the buns, which started the smoke back up. So now I’ve got a pan full of buns in the freezer.

And guess I’ve got an oven to clean today.

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