nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

in these times

with 8 comments


Someday, my memory of these days of pandemic will have faded. But there is value in lessons learned, so I will describe my experiences here.

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My situation is that of a retired person, used to working on my writing at home and going out to do errands and some volunteer work. For my husband and I, staying home is not too different from normal life.

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lemons

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1. Food. Before the pandemic, we had already shifted to getting curb-side delivery of our groceries from the Atlantic Superstore. For that reason, no shift was needed. During this time, we make an order every two weeks, ordering early to get a convenient delivery time. My husband also goes to Sobeys once every two weeks for milk and a few needed items. Both stores have good distancing measures in place and the few substitutions any store has made have not been significant. As for take-out food, we have continued to order pizza and other take-out food as before.

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2. Passing Time in Isolation. I am so lucky that my husband and I have been able to face this time together. I have not really been isolated, since there is always someone there to talk to. We do small household projects together, read a bit together in a mystery series we both enjoy, watch some TV and plan our meals.

I am a writer and my writing life is managed by working on several projects at once, each project in a different stage. I have been very productive in the last two months, completing drafts of three new poetry books, completing work on the next book in my science fiction series, and launching two books, one science fiction and one mystery. I have seen a little spike in readership in the last few weeks, as people turn to reading to pass time alone.

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3. Contributing to Local Businesses. At the best of times, we are not big consumers. But during the pandemic, I have tried to support local businesses. I have bought plants for the growing season from Scotts, art supplies and toys from Endeavours and Think Play, fabric from Fabricville and so on. These businesses have gone above and beyond to give safe and friendly service. When parcels arrive, I put them in Quarantine for three days, to minimize any risk.

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4. Getting Out and About. During the pandemic, we have taken short drives, to bird watch, check on our cabin (about 3/4 of an hour away) and deliver sold books. In a stroke of luck, I had ordered author copies of my four newest books before Amazon cut delivery service to Canada, so I have books to sell. I do what I call ‘drive-by-bookings,’ making arrangements with those who want to buy my books, hanging a bag of books on the door handle and leaving to maintain social distancing. I have also put copies of my books in some of the little free libraries in town.

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5. Staying in Touch. I am so grateful to live in the age of the internet. I am able to keep in touch with family and friends by way of email, Facebook and my blog. My two writer’s groups have held their meetings on Facebook Messenger and I have taken a writing course twice a week on Facebook. I have family members not on social media and we have kept touch by way of telephone.

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6. Staying Healthy. Our days are very routine. We focus on getting lots of sleep, keeping our intake of fruit and vegetables high, keeping in touch with our physician and diabetic health care folk. As usual, I fall short on exercise. I have mobility problems and always do a half hour program of stretches each morning. Other than that, my success in the area of exercise is rather pitiful. I say I will do better.

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7. Adaption to new standards. We are lucky in New Brunswick where I live. We have had few cases, have no new cases (according to testing) and no deaths from COVID- 19. We are in the Yellow Phase of our re-opening plan which means most business can open with social-distancing and other measures in place.

Social distancing is hard. Not because I am a huggy sort of person, but because I find confronting people difficult. If someone is getting too close, I find it hard to confront, to say back off, even in a nice way. So when the delivery fellow comes to the door and tries to pass me a box, I take it, getting nearer than I should.

As our province tries to return to ‘normal’, I know mask-wearing will become part of our culture. So I dusted off my sewing machine and scanned the many videos showing mask-making. By the end of making ten washable masks, I could do them with my eyes shut, but my back hurt and I think I sewed through my finger at least once.

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The other day, as I went through some poems I have written, I came across one about getting the H1N1 vaccine. I have almost no memory of that time in my life. Of course, our lives were not affected in quite the same way. Perhaps I will look back on the time of COVID-19 and know some things changed for the better.

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All my best.

Stay safe. Wash your hands. Stay home as much as possible.

Find a safe way to talk to and be with those you love.

Jane

Written by jane tims

May 25, 2020 at 7:00 am

8 Responses

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  1. These were some rough months, apparently they say we curbed the situation here in NYC. We shall see how that turns out, I commend you on staying creative as I have swerved in and out of my own. You and your husband are lucky to have one another

    Liked by 1 person

    AntonioWestley

    June 8, 2020 at 9:00 pm

    • Although we have had few cases where I live, most are still very cautious. I am an introvert so I have found isolation easier than others. I have been in your wonderful city and admire so much the diversity and artistic spirit of New Yorkers!

      Liked by 1 person

      jane tims

      June 8, 2020 at 9:53 pm

      • Thank you for clarifying that point about nyc, considering everything that’s been happening down here it makes you wonder sometimes. I surely hope everything gets better where you are. Even tho I’m sure an excuse for more down time would be the best thing ever for you lol 😁

        Liked by 1 person

        AntonioWestley

        June 9, 2020 at 8:41 am

  2. Hello Jane: First of all, I would like to thank you for commenting on my last post (Diane Dyal Paintings) since I’d don’t get a lot of comments and in addition I like what you had to say. This prompted me to go to your blog, which I don’t always do when someone likes or comments. I must say I love your blog! And congrats to you for all those awards. Perhaps you could give me advice on helping my blog to become more popular if it’s not too much trouble. Thanks so much, Diane Stay safe.

    Liked by 1 person

    dianedyalpaintings

    May 27, 2020 at 3:15 pm

    • hi Diane. I only know it takes a long time to build followers. I have been blogging since 2011 and I have 600+ followers but about 200 of those are my links to Facebook. and on WordPress I only get a few likes for any single post. I notice that some types of posts are more popular than others. For example, I had quite a few likes on a recent COVID post and fewer on one about illustrations in my sci fi books. I get busy and I see likes reduced when I don’t post regularly ( i aim for a post each Monday, Wednesday and Friday). The advice I’ve been given says to build a ‘brand’ and be true to it. I try to make most posts related to ‘place’ and of course my posts about plants and animals fit into this well. Posts about my sci fi have never been as popular so I tried to start a new blog about science fiction (www.offplanet.blog) but keeping up with two blogs is almost impossible. You seem to have the ‘brand’ down as I associate your blog with your paintings. Another goal should be to read other blogs and comment often. Most people will visit your blog after you visit theirs. It’s a bit of a racket. Ask me anything you like and I’ll try to give you a useful answer!

      Like

      jane tims

      May 27, 2020 at 8:38 pm


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