Update From the Land of Social Distancing

“Within Mother Nature, by Katie J., 11th grade. This won 1st Place in the Northern Virginia District PTA Reflections contest, and went on to win 1st Place (the Award for Outstanding Interpretation of Theme) in the state.

It’s the end of the first week of The End of Life as We Know It, as we all try to adjust to our new, Coronavirus-induced reality. Everything is weird and tense and depressing, but you already know that.

Virginia does not yet have a statewide order to close businesses, but many have closed anyway; those that are open are not allowed to have more than 10 customers in the place at a time, and restaurants can do takeout only. Even if I wanted to go out, there aren’t a lot of places to go. And, of course, we’re all being told to stay away from people outside our own families, as much as possible. So I have been sticking close to home, where we are limited to our own, familiar germs.

I’m not going stir-crazy yet. But I saw too much news yesterday and am staying away from it today. (Note to self: avoid future presidential press conferences or risk breaking the TV when I give in to the compulsion to throw hammers at that lying orange face.) Breaking the TV would be unfortunate. We have been binge-watching Outlander. My teenager says it’s an educational show, teaching him all about Scottish history and sex.

I am keeping busy putting together information and copies of Reflections art contest entries for a local newspaper editor who has realized schools being closed means no material for his student art page! He appealed to me for Reflections contest student art, and I’ve been sending artwork and other info for the last couple days, glad for the publicity, especially since the April 16 awards show I’m planning will likely never happen. And yesterday I used disinfectant wipes on my Little Free Library and everything in it, having decided for now to keep it open for now but clean it often and stop accepting book donations. Yes, it tells you something, that the big excitement of my day involved cleaning something. But the neighbors seem grateful.

The artwork on this page is the 1st Place High School winner in the Visual Arts category of the Northern Virginia District PTA Reflections contest. It was featured today in the Fairfax Times, too, a result of my frantic efforts to compile and submit artwork.

Bob is teleworking some days and going into the office on others. He’s home today, but for most of the day he has been in his office in the basement (we keep him down there as much as possible) so I see him only when he comes up for coffee. Jon Morgan will be out of school at least until the end of spring break in mid-April, but I’m assuming that will be extended, possibly through the end of the school year. No word on how that will affect his graduation in June. He is in his room now and claims to be working on Latin, but I’m pretty sure he has spent most of the day (and week) playing video games and texting his girlfriend. His best friend is home from college and is perplexed when Jon Morgan says he can’t go see him. Apparently he is oblivious to the whole “social distancing” thing, though my son seems to get it and so far is cooperating.

Everyone stay safe!

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