10 days in the hole

New Zealand’s national Coronavirus Level 4 Alert… lockdown… enters Day 11 today. So far, NZ COVID-19 cases are still doubling every few days, and we will hit 1,000 today. But only one death so far and about a dozen in the hospital. Fingers crossed.

The other day we took pictures of ourselves on the deck enjoying Prosecco and nibbles in the golden afternoon light that seem entirely insensitive in the face of so many images of bodies in New York and Milan and everywhere. So instead, here’s a more restrained glimpse of how we live now: frozen pizza which will be enjoyed in front of the TV.

But that Prosecco evening is real… not only are we not sick, in fact there are a lot of nice aspects to this surreal interval. It’s been glorious weather, and the lack of cars on the road only enhances our own quality of life. The neighborhood seems more alive than ever, since people are here, walking around in family-group bubbles, instead of driving around doing stuff. I’m working from home, which is fine. We’ve been getting out for fresh air walks and plenty of other exercise (although they’ve just officially banned swimming which is sad for me). We haven’t experienced problems at the grocery store. And so on.

Of course there are disruptions and new uncertainties in our lives… Lee’s brand-new part-time job is mostly on hold, and might not exist for long, which would be a shame. We miss the activities we can’t do, and that will get worse as time goes on. In the short term, the financial impacts for us are manageable, but we know even less about what our retirement options will look like.

But overall, it’s a time for serious gratitude that we find ourselves in what seems like one of the right-est places in this wrong-est of times.

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