The Quarantine Report

I'm writing this post a week ahead of when I normally would, which is usually right before blog day and I'm freaking because I don't have a topic. The idea popped into my head and I need to get it down while it's fresh and before it grows feet and wanders off into the woods and doesn't return.

Our weather this week has been typically springlike. We've had all these things going on: rain, a somewhat nearby tornado, hail, sunshine, 40s, 90s, wind, calm. Everything except snow, sleet, and fog.

The crazy weather makes a good example of our emotions and reactions to this awful COVID-19 Pandemic. I say our, but maybe it's just me.

All of it together makes me a little crazy. Husband is Mr. Fetch It. We're fortunate in many ways with this quarantine. He's more spontaneous. If I don't have a routine, I'm lost. He enjoys meeting and greeting every day. My personality is somewhere between introvert and extrovert, with a few good and bad qualities of each thrown in. Too much peopling wears me out. Too many spontaneous activities turn me into a zombie.

My daily routine hasn't changed too much. So what do I do?

I write. This lets me play with Gracie and experience her adventures in my head. It also keeps my brain occupied so that it doesn't dwell on anything other than Gracie and all the what-ifs that pop up in the story as I write.

I play Farmer Jane. If you've been following me for a while, you know Husband is the gardener in our family. The only things in our backyard when we moved here last year were three young Chinese elms. One of those was barely hanging on. Literally. The wind almost blew it over a couple of times until we had them all restaked and braced properly.

Now we have another tree, this one a magnolia. Some shrubbery - red tips and Texas sage. Flowers: pentas, hibiscus, camilla, Pride of Barbados, knockout roses; and soon soon salvia, vinca, and portcullis. Veggies and herbs: peppers (mild and hot), squash, small tomatoes, basil, oregano, dill, sage, and I think a few more, but can't remember which ones.

So now the one pot of cherry tomatoes we have is bearing fruit, and some of it is ready to pick every few days or so.



And... leaves on my plumeria stick! Will there be blooms later in the summer? Stay tuned



I watch and listen to the birds. In addition to sparrows, doves, and my beloved mockingbirds - one of which chases the neighborhood squirrel along the fence every morning - a pair of cardinals have also been visiting. So pretty!

Anyone have a clue about these two? I think they are cormorants. Someone in the neighborhood has been complaining about a whole flock of them invading one of the lakes and eating all the fish.



I read. I have read as many novels this year already, in four months, as I normally read in a year. I'm not complaining about that at all.

Update: Judging from some of the comments, I didn't make this clear. I call my yoga Coffee Yoga and Wine Yoga because of the times of the day I do them. Coffee is done in the mornings and Wine is done in the evenings. Coffee is calm and stretchy. Wine is wicked and warrior-like. Apologies for any confusion :)
I yoga. I have two different routines, Coffee Yoga and Wine Yoga. Some days I do both. Some days I do neither. I still do the coffee and wine, just without the yoga :)  I'm not a master at this by any means and I only do simple poses with short focusing times, but it makes me move as well as being calming and relaxing.

I post a lot of funny and motivation/inspiration stuff on Facebook. I hope it brings a smile to people's faces as they scroll by. Or makes them think. Or reminds them to be grateful. We often forget all of that. I'm guilty, too.

I miss walking, and I'm looking forward to being out and moving around freely. A long walk on the beach would be awesome, but I'll be really happy to walk around the neighborhood.

Now, after about six weeks more or less (I've lost count) of not venturing beyond the mailbox or the backyard or seeing any real people other than Husband, a few family drive-bys, and even fewer strangers walking or running by our house, I find myself missing people I don't know but can see and hear in person going about their daily lives as I do mine. It's a strange feeling.

Have faith.


In other news, people love bargains and readers need books. Solomon's Compass will be on sale for 99 cents over the Memorial Day Weekend, May 21-27.

Love and Murder on the Texas Gulf Coast

Finding your true north isn't always easy. It's more difficult when you're the target of your uncle's killer. But USCG CDR Taylor Campbell is a determined woman - even more determined than veteran SEAL Jake Solomon, USN Ret. 




I'll be back here on Wednesday, June 3.

Hugs,

Carol




Comments

Our weather has been all over the map as well.
I'm still working, so my routine hasn't changed much. Miss going to the gym and movies though.
Glad you're getting some tomatoes.
Liza said…
I love the sound of your garden. We are having a very cool spring and all our blooming things are very far behind schedule. I'm ready for warmth.
Jan Morrison said…
Hi Carol - glad to read your real life post! I like your garden notes - I just checked my two containers on the deck - radishes, carrots, and a bit of lettuce are sprouting in one container - nothing yet in other. Can't have a real garden until man builds deer fence - deer and bunnies are a daily experience in this yard!
I don't think those are cormorants - whenever they are out of the water they spread open their huge wings as they don't have a coating like most water birds. Goose? Cannot tell. I have a sharp-shinned hawk making a nest in my yard. I caught it and its mate on camera doing the spring fandango!
Glad you can write - me too. My life isn't a whole lot different - and I live in a place where you can walk loads and still keep your distance so that is a daily treat.
Be well!
Rachna Chhabria said…
Even I miss my walks, but as I've started yoga, it is working well for me. Love the cherry tomatoes.
Jemi Fraser said…
Our weather is nutty too - a few days ago we hit the 60s, today we'll maybe reach 40, and maybe snow in a few days. Nuts!
Our planting rule is to wait for the 'first full moon in June' before we put anything in the ground so I'm very jealous of those tomatoes!
Bish Denham said…
My hubby is the fetch-it guy, too, so I haven't been getting out much. When I have gone out I've been startled by how much I miss people's smiles since most of them are covered up by masks. There's also the odd/distressing feeling of paranoia about being around strangers, something I've never felt in my life. I miss the simple pleasure of going to the grocery story and not being at all concerned about the people around me. Now, there's a kind of sinister dread lurking between us all that's very uncomfortable.
Nope, you aren't the only one. My emotions are as erratic as our weather, too. It was so warm the past few days, we finally turned the AC on yesterday... and this morning, I had to wear a light jacket to go to the grocery store. I don't remember temperatures getting quite this cool this time of the year since we moved to GA in '71. Maybe Mother Nature is as freaked out by the pandemic as we are.

Take care, dear lady.
Natalie Aguirre said…
It's been surprisingly cool here at night so I can't even plant many vegetables. Awesome that your husband is fixing up your backyard. Mine is in desperate need of help like that.
H.R. Sinclair said…
Those weather conditions are a great metaphor for our emotions.

Those tomatoes look so tasty. I haven't heard of coffee or wine yoga. Sounds like something I need to learn about :)
Our weather is stuck firmly in the unpredictable range as well.
We are moving into autumn. I am busy planting bulbs for a spring display. And some of last year's bulbs are in bloom. At least three months too early.
As a confirmed (chronic) introvert the stay at home thing strokes rather than hits me. I feel for those on the other end of the equation.
Stay safe, stay well.
Mason Canyon said…
Our weather in Alabama is much like yours, Carol, all over the map. Today it is so windy you could almost go parasailing on the lake without a boat. I'm with Holly as I've never heard of coffee or wine yoga but would love to learn more. Maybe there's a topic for a post for you in the future. Take care and stay safe.
L. Diane Wolfe said…
Look at your little stick! That's how I feel about our baby pecan trees.

I have no set routine. Chaos took over years ago.
Carol Kilgore said…
Alex - The tomatoes are yummy!

Lize - A lot of places have been unseasonably cool. I'm glad we weren't one of them. Of course summer isn't here yet either, so we're enjoying our prolonged spring.

Jan M - We've lived with deer and bunnies before--I know how that is! But they're so cute :) The birds are about the size of geese, but I didn't know geese could be all black.

Rachna - I look forward to yoga every day.

Jemi - Tomatoes are one of my favorite foods.
Carol Kilgore said…
Bish - The few times I've been out, I've also experienced the same things as you. Plus I wonder who may be ill, with or without symptoms. By the time I get home, I'm wanting to sanitize my whole body. I don't like that feeling at all.

Susan - Our AC has been on since March, but it hasn't run every day since then. Only sporadically. But we haven't needed heat, that's for sure.

Natalie - Husband has a beautiful green thumb and loves working out there. It is way better and more inviting than when we moved in, but it is still a work-in-progress. I love that he can create beauty from nothing.

HR - Coffee = Morning. Wine = Evening. I just gave names to the routines. Mornings are calmer and evenings more energetic.

EC - I agree! This thing is way easier for introverts than extroverts.
Carol Kilgore said…
Mason - Coffee = Morning. Wine = Evening. I just gave names to the routines. Mornings are calmer and evenings more energetic.

Diane - Yes! Yesterday, Husband said, "Did you see the leaves on that stick?" I assured him I did :)
Karen Baldwin said…
Love all your garden plants.Some I've never heard of. I used to love to get my hands in dirt, but here in Mexico it's mostly sand...and mosquitoes, so I don't venture out to garden. I was visiting my daughter in San Antonio and got stuck there for five weeks...well I actually liked spending more time there...but I've always had a fear that one day I'd be in the States and "something" would happen and I wouldn't be able to get back home...so I caught the last United flight to Cancun before they cancelled all for April.
I'm slightly jealous of your garden. I don't have a garden anymore. While I don't miss the mowing, I do miss my herb and tomato patch.
cleemckenzie said…
I envy you those tomatoes! I can't even go to the nursery to buy plants unless I stand in well-spaced line that winds around the block. No thank you.

We have a group that meets Friday nights, and we call it WOGA. Yoga first. Wine and chit-chat after.
Carol Kilgore said…
Karen - I'm happy you got home safely and I hope your area is safer from this virus than we are here.

Lynda - Herbs and tomatoes are basically what we have. Plus a few squash and peppers.

Lee - I haven't been to the nursery either. If I don't get there, we will have no salvia, vinca, and portcullis this year. Husband finagled the herbs and veggies someplace. I thought I would be better off not knowing :)
My life in lockdown is the same no change here except I don't go out Friday mornings I have not been shopping since the start of March
Carol Kilgore said…
Jo-Anne - The last time I went shopping for anything was mid-March. And now it's going on mid-May. Stay safe.
DMS said…
I haven't left my house since I left work on 3/12 and then my state closed. I am lucky to have someone to get my groceries and stuff like that. Besides working from home- my routine hasn't really changed. I like being home and I have plenty to keep myself occupied. I miss seeing a few people, but overall I am fine and have the things I need.

Glad you are doing well!

Stay safe!
~Jess
Carol Kilgore said…
Jess - I'm glad you have someone to get things for you. I like being home, too, although I was usually here for at least most of the day every day pre-pandemic. Stay safe!
Melissa said…
The weather HAS been nuts lately. That's Houston for ya. I'm with you on the introvert side. Too much people-ing wears me out, too. I haven't been visiting blogs much, but I think of you every time I drive on 99. :)
Carol Kilgore said…
Melissa - When I hear about Katy for me. I was on 99 yesterday. Had to run to the vet in Tomball.