The satisfactions of self-quarantine

Sleep, read, reflect

Opinion

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By Arlene Jones

Columnist

I have chosen to self-quarantine. Even before the governor and the mayor got on television and advised us of their mandates, I had already chosen to err on the side of caution. The television reports and everything I had read about the coronavirus said it was not something I wanted to experience.

What is both sad and interesting are the number of people who don't understand the reasoning for the stay-in-place order. In a nutshell, every viral attack has a life cycle. By being unavailable to become a candidate to catch the virus, the theory is that the fewer people exposed to it as it goes through its cycle, the fewer will be affected by it. The flip side is also true. If you do get the virus, stay in the house and only affect yourself! That is the defensive strategy at its basic.

One week into being self-quarantined, I cannot brag about all the things I've done. I have primarily slept a lot during the past week — not the sleep of someone who is sick, but the sleep of someone who was very tired. Thankfully, I've always kept a cupboard full of food so I have eaten well over the past week. I already know that I will gain weight. I am not a big junk food eater, but I had bought a couple of boxes of cookies and so far I've eaten my way through one. That box only had nine dark chocolate covered butter cookies in it so at least it wasn't a humongous amount.

I have quite a few home projects I was planning on accomplishing within my house. I am hopeful I can get some of them finished. One of the projects involves cutting wood, and the blade to my table saw has worn down. I don't know how I feel about going out to buy a new one. I guess I'll play that by ear. A second project I know I should be undertaking is painting one of the bedrooms in my house. It's been over 20 years since that room has been painted. I know the color I want. Again, I just have to be brave enough to go to the store to buy it. I admit the coronavirus has planted a well-founded fear of it within me.

I was in the market to buy a new refrigerator. I was thinking that when the quarantine is over, I could probably get one at a great price. Then I read a news report about how people have been going out and buying freezers like crazy because they bought so much food, they didn't have any place to store it. I'm grateful that my deep freezer is now 37 years old and works great. Because it's a chest freezer, I doubt that it's even eating up that much extra electricity. I had thought about replacing it and getting something smaller, but that plan is now going to be on hold because freezers are, according to the report, the hardest thing to find. Guess where most of those freezers are made? China where the coronavirus is alleged to have originated. At the same time, once this virus is over, people may be selling them dirt cheap because you need to have the room for it. In my opinion, every homeowner should have a deep freezer.

I've been doing a lot of reading of different newspapers' online sites. Illinois and Missouri have both had female, retired, African-American nurses as their first coronavirus-related deaths. Maybe it's coincidental, but I found that very strange. The conspiracy theorist in me is on alert because of that.

As I ready for my second week of quarantine, I hope many others are joining me by doing the same thing.

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