Covid: A Sensory Journey

If the “Great Lockdown” or whatever history calls this thing had sight, smell, sound, taste, and feel, what would they be?

Feel is easy: Tired. The feel of a not-so-early morning after a long night of binge-watching whatever (Mandalorian, Picard, Friends). Being tired for no particular reason, like the tired of a long road trip or transcontinental flight: You haven’t exerted yourself, but you’re exhausted, disoriented, and cranky.

CoVid19 tastes like bad breath, that cottonmouth you get from dehydration after too late a night or far too early a morning. It also tastes like the Diet Coke® I secret away in my gun safe so my kids won’t drink any.

The sound of the lockdown is tromping footsteps, the sound of aimless walking on the sidewalk outside your house. People are taking more walks, but desperately trying to stay away from other people. It’s almost Orwellian if it weren’t so benign (for now).

The other defining sound is one of nature, of birds celebrating spring, of deer quietly eating and rustling through grass. Nature is loving having some turf back, and making the most of it.

The smell of quarantine is Epsom Salts, of my daughter desperately trying to stave off an ingrown toenail as we try to avoid taking her in for the inevitable nail removal. Non-emergent. Deal with it at home. Flatten the curve.

The sight is a grey overcast sky, slipping along to wherever, a melange of Mexican dust from where the Colorado used to be, the odd isotope still decaying from Fukushima, Chinese soot, and a world on pause.

Does the sight grow better or worse? Do we get out of this, and do we recognize ourselves after?

Non Sequitur Snapshots

My daughter Grace drank 3 (tea-)cups of coffee this morning. Watching her peak like a Tweaker the crash…like a Tweaker, just trying to keep her mind moving gibberish at escape velocity. She could be another Kerouac, that one. Her mind moves that fast, like mine only does in a dream, or for fleeting moments when I’m coding when it feels like the machine’s taken over.

Maria’s up and down. Many days she seems fine with seeing her friends on Zoom. Other times, she seems really down, emotions pouring out of her.

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