Saturday, October 3, 2020

October Surprise

After so many months of predictable ordinariness, this week had little ordinary about it.  We were surprised by the ring of the doorbell last weekend, a very unlikely event in the time of Covid.  Unexpected visitors simply do not happen these days.  Outside the door stood Jack's younger son, Zack, and his wife, Katrina, telling us to come outside for a surprise.  We could see a masked woman getting out of the car but it didn't register with either of us who she was at first because she was the last person we expected to see -- Jack's youngest child and only daughter, Abi, was standing in our driveway with her boyfriend, Ben, all the way from their home in the District of Columbia, with no prior notice!  We were stunned.  They claimed that they were there to drop off Jack's gift from last Christmas, a wallet that Abi had back-ordered, and when he took the wallet out of the box he discovered (with a little prompting) that under the wallet was a sonogram!  They were actually in town to announce Abi's positive pregnancy test and to tell Jack that he was going to be a Grandfather.    

I'm afraid that social distancing went out the window during their tearful embrace and for the week that the visit continued.  Although we tried to be more careful and more distant than would have been normal in the past, and although we did try to visit outdoors as much as possible, we also shared some time inside our house as the temperatures got colder, and Jack, with my encouragement, also  spent time alone with Abi.  They drove to a local forest to go walking, went target shooting, and visited her favorite coffee shop and cafe.  I spent a lot of time cooking and sanitizing.  Although we grilled steaks and had all the fixings, my biggest culinary hit for this crowd was my homemade pretzel bites and smoked gouda dip.  

Now that Abi has returned home, while Jack continues to adjust to the news he had been craving for the past decade, we will quarantine again to be sure that Nothing Bad Happened.

My sister is in the hospital again; she has permanent lung damage from "Covid webbing," as well as shingles and some new stomach problems, all tied, she is told, to the virus.  She has been in the hospital for well over a week again this time, while they are trying to get her pain and the infections under control.  We do not take the threat of this virus lightly.  

I gave Abi a little rag quilt I made when she first told me she wanted to have a baby, and have already started trying to decide what baby items to start sewing.   Meanwhile, I finished the two "quarantine" quilt tops for my Grands and sent them out to be quilted.  When they are returned, I will need to label and bind them, but then I will be able to wrap and put aside my first two Christmas creations.  That will be a good feeling when it happens because they are my largest planned projects for the holiday.  This week I plan to monogram a few towels for my family and Jack's, more little Christmas tokens to pack away.  My daughter in New Orleans phoned me several times this week with ideas of things I could buy for her gifts this year, so I am well into planning mode.

Our circles of contact are growing.  My son, a university dean and mathematics professor, has been teaching two classes a week; many of the students opt to attend virtually, but some students choose to be instructed in person.  My granddaughter will be starting in-person classes this week, which also means that my daughter in law, who works for the same school system,  will start teaching in person.  My grandson's school plans to begin in-person instruction at the end of the month.  We are all waiting to see how their schedules work out since they will attend different hours at different schools.  I have offered to pitch in with chauffeur duty as I have every other school year, but with a bit more trepidation than usual because of the virus.  We will figure it all out and do it as safely as possible, probably with masks and open windows, but there's little doubt that it will be a more stressful than usual year.    I know it will be good for the kids to have 'real' school again -- they have missed being around their friends so much --  and I have to admit, I will be glad to see them under any circumstances at all!

1 comment:

Barbara said...

Wonderful news about the baby. Yikes...so sorry about your sister. It sounds very serious. I’m so glad I don’t have young people to worry over returning to school. It must be terribly anxiety-provoking.