The Big Quarantine – May 16, 2020
The Day in Canceled: This weekend I was supposed to be in North Carolina visiting dear friends, taking part in some spring farming activities on my Friends’ farm*, and seeing Yola at The Cat’s Cradle, a great venue in Carrboro. I’m there in my dreams. In the meantime, I’m on my couch listening to Yola’s excellent 2019 album Walk Through Fire. Yola is a young black, British artist who cites Willie Nelson, Dolly Parton and soul music as her influences. I also hear a little 80’s Tracey Ullman in her sound. She is definitely a music fan and her album includes a straightforward cover of Elton John’s Yellow Brick Road.
The opening track, Far Away Look has a great line about being in a faltering relationship
Nobody moves the way you do
Walking ’round the grocery store
Only you know what you’re looking for
*A couple years ago I was at this farm helping plant tomato plants. I nicked one of the baby plants with a hose and it cracked. It didn’t break off, it just folded over and looked terrible. I felt awful, because a lost plant meant they would have a few less tomatoes to sell at the market. They said it was not a problem, they could fix it. I thought they were being nice and didn’t believe them. They must have recognized how distraught I was and later in the season they sent me a picture of the thriving plant. Farming is not my jam.
The Day in New Customs: I dropped by Findlay Market to get my Mom the things she requested last weekend, but I couldn’t get to because of the crowds. Last weekend was busier than it has been so far in the Covid Era and the market was a little overwhelmed. Lessons learned. This weekend, the customer flow was more controlled. Customers and vendors are settling in to constant change.
Last night was the first night of open-air dining for restaurants and some bars. From reports from friends on Facebook there were successes and failures. Social media was ripe with reports of non-compliance last night and mea culpas from the businesses this morning. That seems about right. It’s going to take some getting used to.
It is also worth noting that despite the sensational pictures of people shoulder-to-shoulder in a handful of venues these people still represent a minority. The majority of people believe in and and are exercising varying degrees of caution. Many people went out to dinner last night and respected the new social rules of facing a pandemic. This is as important as the people who went out and flaunted the rules. Face mask compliance is still troubling and yes, the spread of the virus would slow quicker if we were ALL on the same page, but we’re not. This is the world we have to live in.
Also, on my afternoon walk today I passed by Holiday Bar on Race Street and I saw a full patio where everyone was drinking from plastic cups. I’m just gonna come right out and be an ass about this. I hate paying for craft beer and drinking it out of a plastic cup. It’s not right. The taste is off. And as a latent hippie I hate single use items. Now…will I do it? Will I drink fancy beer out of plastic cups and then throw my cup sin the trash? If that’s what I have to do, gah, of course. Boooo!
The Day in Feeling Antsy: I just really want to go someplace. I don’t mean to travel. I just mean to leave my house on a whim and have someplace to go. Over the cold, dark winter, this feeling is known as cabin fever. During the Covid, I think we can discuss the feeling as more ansty with a hint of agitation.
Even as my regular bars and eateries come back, I’m still missing theaters, museums, music venues, and even the library. For all the mentions of salons and gyms not being open, I’m hearing crickets about the library. After reading Facebook for five minutes, it is obvious we all need more library time. Anyway, I got no particular place to go…yet.