Social Distancing Diaries: Vol. 7

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In many ways, these weekly posts are an update on my life in a pandemic hot zone. In other ways, I treat these posts as a way to remember all the thoughts and emotions and news that passes each week. At any given moment I feel overwhelmed, anxious, stressed, concerned, scared, hopeful, and tired.

The longer we are in self-isolation, the more likely it is that there is no return to normal. Many retail stores (including bookstores) are shuttering permanently because big box stores have taken over the market share, going to a grocery store my still involve social distancing practices, office work will switch to tele-work or open offices become a thing of the past, large gatherings will be frowned upon, and hand shakes might all be something we remember fondly. What else will change? This list is most certainly incomplete.

The good news is that we will always adapt.

Today’s post is on May 1st, it’s our 48th day of self-isolation, and NYC is set to re-open on May 15, but just like the last deadline of April 30th, that seems less and less likely to happen. Even today, it was announced that the subway would shut down from 1am to 5am every day for daily disinfection. It’s a normal step in other cities, but to close the trains in NYC is unprecedented—though extremely justified. In fact, we probably would have done it earlier, except for the homeless population that sleeps there (a whole other issue).

In some hopeful news, the USNS Comfort left NYC this past week so we don’t have to rely on the ship to treat patients with the virus.

Today is also a workers strike for Amazon, Whole Foods, Target, and Instacart. I completely support this strike. It’s imperative that workers receive protections and appropriate pay now that we can clearly see how essential they are to keep our lives running.

As much as we’re all struggling to work from home, it’s no match to everyone doing the essential work of delivering food and other items during this time! They deserve everything they are asking for and these companies can pay!

Also worth noting that, if possible, call to place an order with a restaurant directly instead of ordering through Seamless/Grubhub. The restaurants lose a bunch of money through fees when processing an order this way. We received a notice in our take out order last week asking that future orders be made over the phone.

The news this week about meat shortages makes me extremely upset. Mostly because I read this article about how animals are “disposed” because of lack of demand for food. It breaks my heart how illogical this is. Every day seems to bring about some issue with the supply chain. We know that people are out of work and may be struggling to pay for basics such as food, yet we see articles where farms are throwing away excess produce or killing animals because they can’t reach the customer (see below Twitter thread from José Andrés). There has got to be a way around this that benefits everyone. In this global economy, a famine can also be defined as lack of access to the food—a human problem, not a natural disaster. This is not limited to the US, either.

As you can tell, there’s been a lot on my mind this week. My mom called to tell me that my grandmother who lives in California passed away from heart complications (as far as I’m aware not related to coronavirus), but it’s still challenging time now because my grandfather is in a nursing home and suffering from dementia so he may not be fully aware of what is happening. I will remember her fondly because she would send divinity candy to us for Christmas for many years and would always send a birthday card.

In terms of work, not much has changed week to week. I’m still working from home (no confirmation of layoffs). I find that even a brief conversation over the phone or through instant messaging with my colleagues makes me feel better day-to-day. I do find that even a short walk improves my mood, though, I wish I could just breath fresh air and not walk with a mask on! Josh is unemployed, claiming benefits, and about to finish up his web development course. We both downloaded the Houseparty app and are trying to convince our friends to play games with us! haha We also tried out the app Drizly to order some wine, which worked really well. I recommend it.

Some joys I found this week:

1. My Girlfriend leggings finally arrived. They are the softest and most comfortable leggings I’ve ever worn! They are made from recycled water bottles! Hard to believe! The sports bra is also extremely comfortable.

Girlfriend promo: $10 off purchases over $100

2. This is so spot on and funny!  

3. Finally posted my review of Bonds of BrassIt’s a ton of fun and I can definitely picture young Finn/Poe as the leads here! There’s tons of tension and a good twist end!

4. Finally watched Booksmart this week! It’s so funny! I love Beanie Feldstein!

5. The dessert on the menu this weekend is Strawberry Shortcake!

Click here to see previous entries.

Stay safe and STAY HOME! ♥

Dr Brandt Skincare

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