Week in Review - 3-29-2020

The Good?

Finding the good this week was pretty hard, but there were a few bright spots.

Yes, the Covid-19 virus is here and doing its thing, but it is how you and I react to the problems that it is causing for us all that makes the difference.

We are lucky, that we live in a more rural area than most. There are fewer people, businesses, traffic around us and while it is a pain having to stay at or close to home most of the time, we can still get out to walk, run, do yard work and have a little space to ourselves when we need it.

While I do whine about things like the weather, how the virus is changing our lives and all that stuff, when I stop and look at things, it has not affected us nearly to the extent that it has for those living in a more urban or metro area - yet. Besides we are both pretty introverted and were not part of any social scene so being at home and around one another a lot is not a novel experience for us. Yes, I used that word on purpose.

My youngest daughter out in Minnesota and her family are doing better, I text with her most days and find out how they are doing in the midst of Stay at Home Orders, how the homeschooling experiment is going and such, all with four kiddos and a dog. So far they are surviving and looking forward to a very important date in their lives on April 30th. So that is good news.

Around the house

We are doing yard work like raking around the snow that is still present and some other minor projects have started. I even mowed the sunflower seed shells today (vacuumed them up with a bagger mower), that are under the birdfeeder (squirrel feeder) each Spring after a long Winter and got two bags full.

Yes, it is March 29th and it is snowing outside

After talking things over, we decided to go ahead and get a digital subscription to the Central Maine Newspaper. It is another trip out of the house a couple of times a week and at this point, we just don't want to leave the house to go down to Annie's Variety and we do like to read the local news. For the price, we get unlimited digital access and a real Sunday newspaper delivered. I will miss going into Annie's to get it, but at the same time, it is one less reason to leave the house.

Another thing along those same lines is we are going to have Riverside Disposal pickup our trash for the foreseeable future. It is a bit pricey for up to five bags of trash a month, but not as bad as I expected. Now it will get picked up every Monday, but in the overall scheme of things, it was something we were thinking about doing anyway - why not do it now?  Having the trash picked up will make my life a bit easier, well at least after the first pickup is done. We have always recycled everything as much as possible (we will not anymore) and it has been a few weeks since my last trip to the transfer station, so there is more stuff than usual to be all tossed into the bags for pickup.

I am also starting to clean out the garage and will be pulling out some of the stuff that is in there and deciding what to keep and what needs to go away. This will be a long-term project I have a sneaking suspicion.

Finally, the Rhubarb that never seems to grow in our yard, may have finally found a happy spot. The sprouts that are starting to come out of the ground look much healthier than it has in past years.


I am still running between 4.0 and 6.0 miles most days and the left hamstring is continuing to ever so slowly get better. It is now more of tightness in the hamstring than any discomfort. So all of this not getting to the gym and running harder than I should on the treadmill (which I did too often), has had some benefit, beyond getting plenty of fresh air.

One good thing is that the Hoka Bondi 5s that I got back in October 2017 and have finally figured out a way to run in them without the shoes bothering my right foot like they did. As long as I wear my little toe spacer, I don't have huge problems with the shoes.

Which is nice because I have always liked the Bondi 5s except for how they didn't work with my right foot in the past. This also means that I have a pair of shoes that I can rotate comfortably with my ASICS GlideRide to have them last a bit longer into the Spring.

My ASICS GlideRides are now over 100 miles and I did a review of them this week. I was just too brain-dead to write my usual 50-mile review of a pair of running shoes. Gee nothing is going on, so I can't understand how that could happen.

I am purposely keeping my mileage between 3.0 to 6.0 miles most days and taking a day off here and there when I am feeling tired or have to start up the old snowblower. I do not want to become too fatigued and have my immune system lowered at this time for much of any reason.

We are eating fairly healthy, although every so often the need for comfort food overpowers the need to eat healthily. Cinnamon Pop-Tarts and chips have been my comfort foods lately.

 The Bad

SD2's dog Hunter passed away this week and we all will miss him. He was a 15+-year-old beagle, who had been declining in health for a while. However, at the same time anytime a member of the family passes it does hurt and yes, we consider our critters as members of our family.

We had a March snowstorm that left 6-8" of the white shite on the ground early in the week. No, it didn't stay around, but it still was a pain-in-the-butt to move around after it finished snowing.

On the flip side, not being able to go to the gym means running means we are running outside in all kinds of weather, which is not always what I would prefer to do. As I get older, I find that I am also getting wimpier about running in all conditions. Can I do it, sure? The thing is I no longer want to and would have preferred the treadmill on more than a few of the days that I got to run outside this week. Oh well, it is more me whining than actually something to complain about, after all, I am still getting to run and exercise. :-) There are pros and cons to the gym and the treadmill it seems.

I attempted to maintain a Pandemic Log, to keep track of how I am feeling and also get some of my thoughts out of my head. However, the more I wrote, the more I felt that I had to stay informed about what was going on with the pandemic. Which was not a good thing. After a few days of staying on top of the news more than usual, I decided that it was not a great idea and backed-off to give myself some breathing room from events that I can't control. I may go back to it again this next week, but I don't feel the pressure to keep current on all facets of the pandemic, I am just going to focus on how we are managing and getting my thoughts out of my head.

Although I still read a little more than I should about what is going on, I have limited myself to watching the evening local or national news and if Governor Mills has a press conference, I do attempt to watch what she has to say which usually seems to be more informative, on topic and encouraging than the Federal government briefings. This limiting of the news cycle has improved how I am dealing with all this stuff a lot better.

 The WTFO were they thinking?

1. I have stopped watching the President's press conferences every day, they were too depressing, so much negativity and were becoming too much like a campaign rally to say how great he is doing.  Unfortunately, when you listen to the lies, grandstanding, ass-kissing, and rhetoric that have abounded in them it was simply something that I no longer needed to watch.

While his administration has done some good things (I do give Dr. Fauci a lot of credit), it still takes no responsibility for anything that is not good, which really does rub me the wrong way. They have made too many mistakes to not accept responsibility for them and being a glory hound is not what we need at this point and time.

I believe that Americans need and can handle the truth about what is actually happening and the focus we will need to get through this crisis.

The President and his administration are providing conflicting and confusing information about what they are doing, and worrying about his TV ratings, at a time when I tend to believe there are more important things going on.

You know - a pandemic that has the potential to kill a very large number of our fellow Americans and possibly some or many friends and/or relatives. Minimizing the seriousness of the pandemic did not work, the dying has started and is likely to get worse, much worse.

Instead of building up hope and bringing us together during this pandemic, he is continuing to spout us vs them rhetoric and if anything the tone is becoming even more divisive as the pandemic gets worse in our Country. As shown by the signing photo of the relief bill that was just passed by Republicans, Democrats, and Independents - look who was present for it.

This pandemic is not about Republican versus Democrat or anything else that tends to divide us, it is about Americans coming together to simply get to the other side of it. It is then that we can start to pick up the pieces and get out lives back. I think that we all know that it will not happen overnight and that it will not be the same world that we lived in just a month ago when this is over.

2. The Congress critter from Kentucky that forced the House to have a quorum to vote on the Relief Bill was stupid and dangerous to our leadership. How many other Congress critters will get sick as a result of his grandstanding? Hell, even the President called him out on his stoopidity, so it had to be really stoopid.

3. I know that people are escaping from large urban areas and coming to areas with less population or where they might have second homes or camps. While I am not crazy about people coming from areas with a high number of Covid-19 cases and especially them coming to my area.

At the same time, I can understand why they are doing so and I would probably do the same thing if I was in their shoes. They want to keep themselves and their families safe and possibly have access to medical care if they do get sick because the urban medical systems look like they will be overwhelmed at some point in the near future. Especially, since it seems that so many people of all ages are ignoring them and attempting to live a normal life at this time when normal life is not possible.

However, some of the actions being taken by local and state governments to identify and publicize this influx of those from away may result in violence against those people from the residents where they are hunkering down. It is an unfortunate reality that as times get tougher, people will do stupid things and violence is often the result.

It could get ugly in a few areas because of this issue.

The reality is that

We cannot control what the virus, governments or even other people are going to do or say. All we can do is control what we do each day and live our lives the best we can in these uncertain times. Stay home as much as you can, maintain physical distancing, wash our hands, use technology to stay in touch with those that you love and most of all...

Be kind, be aware and be safe.

 This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.