May 11, 2020 by readlisaread
Here we are 3 months, is it? 4? Into the Pandemic. I hope, going forward, that when we say “The Pandemic”, it only ever means this one thin slice of my lifetime. I refer to it in insignificant terms, because I’ve hit my stride, I’ve found my COVIDian pace, I feel like I can do this for as long as it takes.
But boy, do I miss people.
I see them, talk to them, greet them, still. On Zoom. By text. Via FaceBook. 2 Meters apart at the crosswalk. I am very self conscious, still, of stepping away from someone approaching me, giving them a wide berth– it feels so rude. I am grateful when the person I am snubbing (in pre-COVIDIAN era terms) thanks me. Then I know I haven’t offended them.
I greet people differently, as well as physically distancing myself, I tend to choose non-verbal cues to communicate a “Hello”, or a “Thank you”, or an “Excuse me, let me step aside to let you pass”. It’s all about the droplets, I guess.
A week or so ago I was walking alongside the river in a park near me. There are often people in the park, but on this particular day I was the only person in sight on my side of the river, and as I looked to the other side of the river, I saw a fellow sitting at the water’s edge. I waved. He waved back. And I smiled (although I doubt he could tell I was). And it was reminiscent of that phase toddlers go through when they become aware of other children their size, how they reach out from their strollers and shriek “Baby!!” with delight. I wanted to yell across the expanse of rapids “Hey! Hi! Hello!” as if I were recently returned to civilization and this was the first human I’d seen.
It reminds me how I will value human contact when I emerge from this isolation.
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