I’ve been to the desert on a horse with no name. AKA, the grocery store. It’s been 28 days since my last adventure there. Much has changed. Sneeze screens between customer and checker; employees wearing masks and gloves; most customers peering over masks, the scofflaws looking out of place; senior hours, at an hour only seniors are up; every shelf in the toilet paper aisle bare, with paper towels just sitting on carts in the aisle—why bother shelving them. The usually overwhelming variety of pasta is taking nearly no shelf space; and there is only one container of Haagen Dazs Vanilla Blackberry Belgian Chocolate ice cream. It is mine. My (long) list is on paper instead of a photo of my dry erase board list on my phone. And I don’t take my phone out of my pocket for photo evidence of the lack of toilet paper. Don’t touch your phone!
It took three masked employees to deal with the bottle of Ménage à Trois that escaped the six pack at checkout, two for clean up and one to fetch a replacement.
I didn’t sleep well the night before—anxiety—and I remained anxious the rest of the day after my return, as my non-perishables sat on the kitchen floor in their (plastic) bags for 24 hours. Did I walk too close to the couple not wearing masks? Did I touch my face? I washed my hands six times in the hour after I got back to the ranch. I didn”t sleep well the night after my adventure to civilization either. My throat is scratchy. My nose is running. I think I have a fever. Is that a body ache? It is pollen season, you moron! And you wouldn’t be symptomatic within 12 hours anyway.
I blow the pollen off my deck, which is outside my open bedroom window, twice a day. Just so I can blame my runny nose on it.
Back on safe ground, I went for a walk yesterday, traveling the new trail I discovered a few days earlier. It’s an unofficial spur that connects the official trail network with my trail behind my barn. I started down it from my end some time ago and discovered it was posted with a single sign not far in. I’d turned back. A few days ago I decided to follow an unexplored spur from the Natural Area. Imagine my surprise when I came upon the sign, and my trail! So now I’m a scofflaw too. I’m all for unpopulated places to walk after being completely stressed by too many walkers on Easter Sunday. It’s my new favorite trail.
There. I did a Thursday blog after all. Who knew the grocery store would be the biggest adventure of the month? Now the woodpecker is tapping for breakfast in the maple tree, my coffee mug is empty, and I’m off to start my day. Here. At home on the farm. Perhaps this is the weekend I will rebuild my garden fence. I need to grow more food, so I can limit my trips to the outpost this summer. Maybe I should get chickens.