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Day 7: COVID-19

It’s been seven days now. They have been plain days on some ways and exceedingly weird in others. Working from home is pretty much routine. School from home is another matter. Seven days with very few options even if we did want to go somewhere is the strange part.

Most restaurants in Providence have moved to Take Out only. Even stores. Beth ordered a few puzzles online at Henry Bear’s Park and I picked them up curbside. A store clerk brought them out to the car. Whatever businesses can do to be innovative, safe, and stay in business… they are doing. I have not heard yet which ones are closed temporarily or closed permanently, but it might happen.

Already there has been one business in the Drupal agency space that has announced a permanent closure. Which is odd because it is so quick. What happened? Part of me is very curious. Did they have no cash to fall back on? Did all of their current clients stop work? Did a bunch of developers get sick and they could not deliver on the work they promised? What took them down in a week?

Since that happened, I am pretty impressed with Chris. He saw this coming and started a partner program. Something quiet, but something where we could negotiate a price or percentage for clients that could no longer be kept. Or for people that have lost their jobs to bring along a project to us and get paid for it. Its pretty smart and it looks like we will try to negotiate with this defunct company if they are open to it.

At home things are ok. The girls have been going outside quite a bit. Vivian and Colette both have videos to check in with. East Side Nursery School started a YouTube channel with videos daily for story- and circle-time. Vivian has been given a Chromebook from school and it looks like tomorrow starts distance learning for real with a 9:00am video call check-in.

We set her up with Facebook Messenger for Kids to stay in touch with Elise, Maggie, Sylvia, Zia, Sienna, and others from school. That’s been an adjustment, as screens tend to suck kids in. We’ve had to limit its use. Today, she snubbed Grandma because she was in the middle of a chat with Zia. But yesterday she left a chat with Maggie and Elise, even though the iPad was ringing, and went outside. She seemed like she was done with the iPad, so, I dunno, she is learning her limits and the limits that we expect from her I guess. It’ll be a process.

The ESNS silent auction will be this weekend coming. Not sure how that is going to go.

I helped live stream another service today at Epiphany. That’s been strange too. I must say that Reverend Jen is adjusting well though, and this might make the community at Epiphany stronger as well. But it looks like the church plans to be closed to the public all the way up to Easter, which is another three Sundays from now.

The sign in front of the First Baptist Church downtown reads “We didn’t expect to give up this much for Lent.”

I drove downtown today after church. It was 11am and the streets were near deserted. Other people that were driving happened to wave like in solidarity. Like they were happy to see another person. It was eerie and quiet. Every now and then I would notice a moving truck on some street and wonder “who has the terrible luck to be moving today” then realize oh, these are the students that want or need to get out of town.

I worry about my parents. If something happens to them, I can’t help. Travel from city to city is not restricted, yet, but it could be difficult. Anyone moving around could face quarantine on one side or the other.

I’m anxious. I crave sweets and chocolate. I am eating more than I need to. Things have been ok, like, we have enough food and we have been able to go out to stores to get what we need. But the stress is still there. I don’t feel like I can do enough… of anything. I check the news rarely but I don’t want to be surprised by something either. Cases in RI are up to 83 now, and it was 40 something last I remember. (That was Friday?)

If I think about what we did on Monday last week, six days ago, it feels like last month. So much has changed in the past 10 days.

There is a sort of a meme message going around about how scientists have been asking us to change our collective behavior around climate change for years and years, and we’ve done very little. Business have not taken it seriously. And in just a week, because of a virus that has killed people but so far, not as many people as climate change might destroy, and we’ve changed everything — travel, school, business, purchasing, even manufacturing. It’s pretty wild.