Ten months into this bloody pandemic and life has definitely changed. Looking back to March of 2020, I honestly think that I was in some kind of denial about the seriousness of the situation and how long it would impact my life.
In the beginning, I stayed home. My daughter shopped for me and dropped things off on the porch. I talked to friends and family on the phone and on Zoom calls. Living alone, I most definitely felt loneliness set in. I had been use to doing everything for myself and had enjoyed a busy social life. That all came to a screeching halt!
Weeks turned to months and the warmer weather finally arrived. This gave new meaning to my days. I could spend time in the garden, sit on my porch and chat with neighbors, or go for a lovely walk in the sunshine. Life looked brighter and I felt more optimistic now, but I missed my friends and family.
With the warmer weather came the announcement that restaurants would be permitted to open their patios with dozens of restrictions. My close girlfriends and I were elated and we wasted no time in reserving places to eat and drink. We, of course, took all necessary precautions to keep ourselves safe. We were especially excited when our local pub finally reopened for service. Seeing all our old friends and the wait staff renewed my optimism that we would get through this nightmare. However, even this came to an abrupt halt when our beloved Tartan Tavern announced it would be closing permanently. Another victim of the virus!
2020 had no sense of humor and its bad news spared no one. As we started into the second phase of the pandemic, I was convinced that I might never have fun again, but a simple trip to a local country market restored my optimism.
I am not a regular customer at White Feather Country Market, but I have really been trying to support small businesses. Our area had just moved into the “red zone” which meant stores had to limit the number of customers permitted inside. When I arrived at the store, I was dismayed to find a lengthy line-up waiting to get in. As I made my way to the end of the line, I noticed a man emerge from his car in the handicapped parking and shuffle his way toward the entrance. The store employee told him he would have to wait like everyone else in line. I must admit that I felt badly for him as he leaned against the hood of his car hoping for the line to end.
After crawling along for about 15 minutes, I was almost at the door. The gentleman still waited patiently. Then, out-of-the-blue, he started to walk towards me. He leaned in and said, “Could I be your partner?” I was a little taken aback, but without a thought, I said,”Of course you can.” He then asked the ladies behind me if they minded that he got in line beside his “partner”. They assured him it was fine.
Once we reached the door, he announced to the employee that we were indeed a couple and linked his arm in mine. She laughed and said she could see that and motioned us inside. As we walked through the door, I asked him why he had waited so long to ask someone else to be his partner. His reply made my day. “Well, I looked at the other ladies ahead of you, but they didn’t seem like they would be receptive to my request.”
“But we’re all wearing masks,” I responded, “so how could you tell?”
“You smile with your eyes,” he said. “I just knew you wouldn’t turn me down.”
“Well, you made my day,” I replied. He looked puzzled. “You’re the first man that I’ve picked up in a covid line.”
“Do you come here often?” he asked. I laughed out loud. He made me feel like a million bucks!
Hang in there everyone! We will get through this. Just keep finding the humor wherever you can.
Thanks for reading,