March 13, 2020

"It's JUST a Tickle, promise!"

Well, I thought I would struggle to post more than two times a week with my writing class starting this week, but I feel the need to touch base.  Plus, Kari has requested more posts, so here I am.  Besides, I was a gold star student this week working feverishly to turn everything in early and read ahead.  So . . .

How is everyone?  What changes are cropping up for each of you?  How tired are you of talking about 'the virus'?

Remember how I was unconsciously stock piling hand sanitizer recently? I am feeling like I might have a super power that I was unaware of.  I joked about an impending super bug.  Oops.  This is a very delayed response to Ali's question on her blog 'Bibliomama' a few weeks ago about whether or not any of us are psychic.

Another sign that I might have telepathic powers . . . I have been mass producing mountains of dinner food and freezing it in preparation for how busy I might be during my class.  What do you know?  Now if the national guard shows up to force us to stay in our homes, guess who will be serving delicious, recently thawed meals?  That's right.  Your telepathic blogging friend, Ernie!

Of course at the time of my meal multiplication mission, I was NOT factoring college kids being home with their grown-men appetites.  Depending on the duration of our possible lockdown, we might be waving the white flag and begging Nice Mr. National Guard Man to deliver us some sustenance.  Sustenance minus gluten for one inhabitant, if you please.  Hoping it doesn't come to that.  

Are you envisioning Mary Ann and I arm wresting in the street for a can of tuna?  Have no fear, friends.  I would win.  No doubt.  If you all get bored, just let me know.  I will roll a can of tuna into the street right where she has instructed us not to park our cars and have Tank video the ensuring scuffle.  Can you say viral?

Speaking of college kids, Lad goes to school in the city in New York that has the highest concentration of Corona.  Yep.  His school closed down on Monday.  I offered to switch his flight to Monday night.  Ahem, I must admit I was not freaked out about his health but I WAS thinking about the errands and workouts I could accomplish with a warm body here during nap time.  It's an occupational hazard.  Lad worried about meeting with a group for a group project.  He also is concerned about being evicted from his apartment.  Long story, which will be featured in an upcoming post.  To sum:  he lives in a pit and pays $$$ and the landlord is unresponsive.  A lawyer is now involved on our behalf thanks to one of Lad's connections.  I think this kid should go into sales.  He can get things going.

I changed his flight to Wed. at noon instead of later this afternoon (Friday).  Thank you, Southwest.  Love that airline.  Wednesday morning I was watching the news, as I always do.  I froze when I heard that they were quarantining a one mile radius of a synagogue that had served as a source to many of the confirmed cases.  Lad's apartment was in the radius.

I called him.  Told him to get out as soon as possible and get to the airport before he was stuck.  He walked away from his apartment and grabbed an uber from his girlfriend's apartment down the street that was not included in the quarantine.  He is home.

Eddie goes to school in Indiana.  I enjoyed Mom's weekend there last weekend (more later, but SUCH an enjoyable time!!!  Extra exclamations totally warranted)  He was set to attend a mission trip over break leaving tomorrow.  The group was going to Houston by bus.  He kept insisting that it would not be cancelled.  They cancelled it late afternoon yesterday.  Such a bummer.  His school has moved classes to online for two weeks after spring break.  Yowza.  He is beside himself and he believes firmly that he will NOT be back at school until the fall.

My kids are positioned on three sides of the playpen.
 They put blankets over it and had their
 fav baby in there.  It was like a baby haunted
 house or more appropriately a peek-a-boo house.
  The 8 mo old little guy was giggling as they
 peeked at him from various angles
by lifting the blankets. 
Who needs school?
Our high school and grade school were cancelled yesterday, because a student at the high school was being tested.  His sibling attends 8th grade with Reg, thus the grade school closure.  I was relieved when they announced that this student tested negative, because his 8th grade sister has type 1 diabetes.

Today the kids went to school.  Praise God, because aside from a trip to the grocery store guess who got NOTHING done yesterday?  Lots of guessing in this post.  Trying to keep you on your toes.

This afternoon I got alerts on every phone and device I own from the high school and the grade school.  The schools are moving to E-learning for three weeks as of Monday.

Tank is worried that he will miss his volleyball season.  Mini doesn't care much about missing her badminton season, enjoyable but her least favorite of her three sports.  

My heart breaks for our high school basketball team that was supposed to play in playoffs last night.  Our team is amazing and we were so looking forward to cheering them on.  I have no kid on the team this year- just super-fans.  It is gut wrenching to listen to the interviews of the athletes in high school and college who miss out on the end of their seasons.

I am waiting to see if  World Championships of Irish Dancing will be canceled.  I assume so, but I have no idea why they haven't yet.  Poor Curly.  She has worked so hard on her steps.  There would be no way to postpone it, because they learn all new dances the minute it is over to get ready for National Championships in July.  We are supposed to fly to Dublin on March 31st.

A typical cart for me. 
I have on occasion taken
 two carts, but with college boys
 away I can manage with one cart.
In normal life news, I visited the grocery store yesterday.  I had not been to the grocery store for weeks.  Not since I bought all the stock-up-and-cook-dinner food.  We were getting by with me ordering kids to pick up these 3 things, or Coach to please buy no more than 5 items.  Today people stared at my cart thinking I was being hysterical.  I wanted to carry a sign that read:  NO REALLY THIS IS HOW MUCH WE EAT.  The bagger asked me if I was feeding an army.  I was like, essentially.  I spent $488.  A big shopping spree for me averages $400, so that was just me being me plus grabbing a few things extra and bracing for the college pie holes.

Another moment of me being me:  I got a tickle in my throat while in the grocery store.  Kind of an unusual occurrence for me, but it happened.  I kept dry coughing.  Ever so slightly.  THE LOOKS I GOT!  I wanted to yell loudly to the hundreds of people lining the isles:  "IT'S JUST A TICKLE, PROMISE!"

A small portion of the Costco line.
  I am nothing if not a great planner.
This morning I went to Costco.  Um.  I was ill-equipped for what I saw.  Pandemonium.  While the grocery store yesterday was busy, but this was total chaos.  The line wrapped around the interior of the store from the pharmacy (just a stone's throw from the registers) to the back of the store down the water isle (rear of store) and back up to the front.  I would guess there were over 100 people in front of me in line.  Again, it was just me stocking up on the normal Costco purchases.

People who are unaccustomed to pushing overflowing carts through the store - welcome to my world. 


Kari said...

You are taking up a good cause, thank you.
So much humor in this post, I like your off the cuff posts a lot!

It's just a tickle made me laugh. Stay away from Costco during the peak hours though. It is a cesspool.

Stay healthy and keep the posts coming.

Busy Bee Suz said...

Oh my.
I'm happy that all your birds are back in the nest.
I imagine it takes a lot of food to feed all of you, but I imagine people would think you're a prepper with carts like that.
It is sad at all the cancellations that will not be made up later; our girl's basketball team (FGCU) was going to have a championship game tomorrow (ASUN) and we were so looking forward to it. Canceled.
Our trip/event in Napa, CA has been postponed until August.
Lolo's classes have been canceled in VA, so she is driving home right now. Generally, someone flies up with her and assists in the driving, well, mostly assists with the maniac Mattis (husky) but she's doing it alone this time since it was last minute.

I'm laughing at your 'tickle', like me trying to hold in my cough at the UPS place. I just couldn't do it.
Coach and I went to dinner last night and I was saying how I wasn't going to cough the entire time, but I couldn't do it. :(
We have a friend who drives a truck for Costco and he say's it's been extra crazy. People stop him in the parking lot asking if he has toilet paper?! He joked that he told people he only had prune juice and ex-lax. :)

I hope all your peeps stay healthy and don't' drive you mad.

Ernie said...

Kari and Suz - Where is everyone? Are they all out waiting in lengthy lines in Costco? Pumping iron to prepare for any upcoming skirmishes with selfish neighbors over cans of untouched tuna? Other commenting types - where are you and how are you doing? Are you fighting in the isles for rolls of toilet paper. Do tell!

Kari - I hope that I have enough stock to stay away from Costco for a 2 or 3 weeks. My driving kids can always run to the grocery store for me. I make a list this morning of assignments, which they love. I have decided that everyone will cook a meal on their own over the next few weeks. I am happy to fund the shopping needs for the meals they crate, but grab a driving sibling and leave me out of it.

Suz - It sounds lovely to be cozy under one roof, but lawdy the volume is unbearable. When did everyone get so loud? I wish I had a video of them eating frozen pizza (at least it was DiGiorno) all hovered around the island and discussing the conspiracy theories about who started the virus whether or not it was started to do away with old people and whether or not a bat infected with it was eaten by someone. Even Curly - she believes the guy who discovered it was murdered for his discovery. Tank is very committed to the 'facts' that he pulls out of his ass, which had us all in stitches. Ed, who tends to be well read and factually informed, was busting a gut and said, "Tank, I actually missed this." Give it time, Ed. You will tire of the endless nonsense Tank spews. Trust me here.

Um, the island hovering was due to the fact that the table is still buried under the boxes of food from Costco. I made list today. Someone is going to put it all away, and it ain't gonna be me. closets will be cleaned. Things are happening, damn it.

At mom's weekend, some of the moms were talking about their various trips to Napa. I piped in with "Have you seen the movie Sideways? Great movie. That's all I got on Napa."

Fingers crossed that our New Rochelle guy is not a carrying this bug with him and handing it off to us. I hope Lolo arrives safe and sound with her Husky companion chills out on the trip. Oh those poor Costco drivers and checkers and stockers.

Busy Bee Suz said...

HA. I don't know where everyone is.
Lolo made it home safe and sound and we have a family dinner on the schedule tonight at her and Nathan's house.
I'm laughing at your kids and the conspiracy theories. My husband has a few, but mostly he thinks this is bigger than we are being let on because, how the hell do you close Disney???
Praying all your people stay healthy and that you enjoy them despite the volume. I love the "taking turns cooking dinner"; good for you!

I loved Sideways; one of my favorite movies.

Ernie said...

Suz- exactly. Closing Disney? Is there something they aren't telling us, or more possibly they are telling us plenty but I am only listening to a point. Too busy coping with all the changes, cancellations, and my sudden full house mode while starting my new online writing class.

Beth Cotell said...

My heart also breaks for all the seniors who aren't getting to do all of their lasts. Actually, my heart is breaking for everyone. Part of me feels like this is the right thing to do but the other part of me is left wondering. I guess it's always better to ere on the side of caution...

Ernie said...

Beth - It is so heartbreaking. Curly missing Worlds is such a big deal. Qualifying for that competition is huge and to follow that with hard work and anticipation? Yikes. ESPN is doing something called 'senior night' on one of its programs. Last night they featured our high school varsity boys' basketball team. Best team in our school's history. Season shut down 20 minutes before tip off. We were so excited for playoffs. It was going to be live streamed because they weren't allowing many fans. They showed a photo of one of our seniors laying in center court of an empty gym. Sigh.

I believe that all of this lockdown is totally necessary or elderly and immune compromised people would all be wiped out. Tank's good friends' mom is on oxygen. Has an autoimmune disease. If she catches it she will not survive. She is my age. You know it is serious when they shut down Mickey Mouse.

Bibliomama said...

Angus was driven home (just as the border is about to close) by his roommate who's a good friend and also a senior. Their season is over and who knows if they'll ever see each other again (Jack lives on the east coast, we're in Ontario). Angus's girlfriend is in the states. They have a third term at their college which may not happen. So yeah, things suck and I'm sad for the kids. Also massively relieved that he's home and we're all together. Also terrified about how bad this is going to get, but that's not useful so I'm trying to deal with that. It's an adjustment for us having one kid come home - can't imagine what it's like in your house. Our friends in Chicago have a house that's way bigger than ours, at least - hope yours is too.

Ernie said...

Ali - So much here - kids being home, college kids, etc. Lad got home from college last week when I moved his flight up. Long story but he left again today. Now Coach has to haul ass out to New York to get him this weekend. I plan to post about it tomorrow, if I have the energy. Very upsetting situation.

I think our house is a good size - especially since we put on the kitchen addition and doubled the kitchen space . . . but lately it is feeling tight. Four bedrooms, so everyone shares. Big rec room in the basement where they play ping pong and xbox and generally hide when they know I am looking for all hands on deck to unload groceries or vacuum, etc. The family room and kitchen are each about 19 x 19 and 20 x 22 respectability and they open to one another so that is where we spend most of our time and it is a decent amount of space. We also have a living room and a dining room and a study- the living room is where someone is usually stationed doing homework. There are disputes about people practicing music too loudly for those taking online classes, etc.

Glad Angus is home. It is disappointing for these kids that were excited to be experiencing school with friends and independence. So much they will be missing.

Jessie said...

Hi. Kari sent me and I love you. A) dealing with the college pie holes b) same....the cart full is our regular shopping experience, not stock piling. One Costco size TP will NOT be enough to see us through this. COME ON COSTCO!!!!

Except your all clairvoyant and prepared while I never realized what was coming until it was too late.

Ernie said...

Jessie- thanks for following Kari's link. So good to hear from you - especially during these lonely times (should not be lonely, cuz I am SURROUNDED by my family members- but good golly, I need adult interaction). I need a sweatshirt that says 'I am not a hoarder, I just have lots of hungry kids!' I literally cannot recall the last time I had a tickle in my throat, low and behold- while shopping during the pandemic!