Life in Annapolis, Maryland USA During the Covid-19 Pandemic- Week #10
It is 8:00 a.m. on Tuesday morning and the loud sound of a car horn vibrates through my head. It keeps droning on and on. I look to see where the sound is coming from. My husband Peter and I are taking our labradoodle for her morning walk. The sound surprises me. My first thought is it is someone’s car alarm. I look ahead and see that it is a white sedan that has come to a stop on West Street a few blocks before the start of downtown Annapolis. A hand extends itself out the window and waves up and down. A gesture? Is the driver calling out to someone? Is she beckoning us?
The noise stopped and started up again, a continuous solid sound.The car blinkers were flashing. A woman was driving the car. Evidently she was leaning steadily on the center of her steering wheel. I couldn’t see her clearly, but I could definitely hear her anger.
The honk stopped and started up again and I wondered if we even wanted to keep walking, but I needed to pick up our mail from our post office box. Is this what our world is coming to and is this how people are venting their frustrations, like the marchers who descend on State Capitals demanding everything reopen? She kept this up, driving down West Street and eventually drove on.
The white gray sky had a dullness to its surface and I was eager to get back inside my house surrounded by familiar things that bring me comfort: a fresh cup of coffee, the warm tone of the old pine floors, my father’s oil paintings hanging on our walls. I wanted to focus on the good things I am thankful for: family, community, and an opportunity to write and create. Unnerved by this woman’s frustration, I found myself hoping that her actions were not some kind of bad omen, a sign of what the rest of my day would be like. Determined to make Tuesday a productive day, I knew it was up to me to make it happen.
Skip forward to the end of the week—Friday. This is officially the start of Memorial Weekend. Well not officially because there is no holiday today and banks and the post offices are as open as they’ve been on other days. But this is the day many people start out on their holiday or run out to purchase gas for the grill and supplies for their Memorial Day Picnic. No parade this year. No large gatherings of people over ten. I suppose that there will still be trips to the cemetery to lay flowers on graves, to honor those who have fought in past wars. Is there a way we can honor those who have died in this war?—the war against spreading the novel coronavirus. All those health care, maintenance, transportation, grocery clerks and delivery workers who continue to risk their lives so the rest of us can safely retreat into our homes and gated communities? The rain poured down heavy and swift this morning as we set out to walk the dog. We didn’t get very far. Even in heavy rain, people were out walking for their exercise. I listened to the news and heard a deep divide between those anxious for a return to full “normal” and those who are cautious and want to keep safety guidelines in place.
Now on the day I post this, it is Sunday, May 24th, smack in the middle of Memorial Weekend. At 8:00 a.m. courtesy of the United States Naval Academy the Star Spangled Banner and Reveille were playing, observing Morning Colors and the ceremonial raising of the flag, and I hear bugles and drums. Not too many people were out this morning, so my husband Peter and I decided to walk downtown to City Dock. Some of the members of classic car group that drives down to park near Susan Campbell Park decided to convene, although I noticed that most of the members decided to respectfully stay seated inside their cars. Bitty & Beau’s on Dock Street has reopened to offer carry-out orders of coffee, muffins and sandwiches and folks were walking around town enjoying the morning with a coffee in hand—observing the six foot social distance rules.
This afternoon we decided to try out our croquet set. We are lucky enough to have a flat grassy back yard, a place to hang out with plenty of personal space. “This will be the perfect game for spring,” I decided, considering CDC advice to avoid other people. Our lawn is thick, and my husband accuses me of raking the ball instead of hitting it, but hey in my mind I’m just trying to get that wood ball to where it needs to go. Our dog Chloe, who loves to fetch and retrieve, decided the wood balls should be chased, grabbed and held in her mouth for safekeeping, so we had to bring out one of her rubber balls for her to play with.
Out of four games, Peter won three. He has the more powerful swing! But it’s all in fun. Who knows? Maybe next we’ll set up a volleyball net. Within the confines of our home, we seek out new and different ways of recreation.