Day 8 in the slammer

The “Quarantine Chronicles” continue on this rainy Saturday morning.

1:11pm Saturday 29 February – Start of quarantine

1:11pm Saturday 14 March – End of quarantine

We are at the exact halfway-point of our quarantine (7 March at 1pm). Thankfully, the AQI dropped below 50 this morning so we were able to open the windows and kitchen door (that leads to a too-small-to-use balcony). The fresh air coming in shocked me a bit – all the windows and doors have been closed for a solid week. We have an air purifier in the bedroom that keeps the AQI below 10 in the apartment (except when Grant is cooking; I have witnessed 600 when something smokey is coming from the downstairs kitchen) but the fresh air blowing in, and car horns from the street below, did something to cleanse the atmosphere and bring a bit of normalcy back in.

A week in, here are our reflections:

Grant – So far the quarantine is going okay. I’m not loving it, but it’s been tolerable. It’s good that we are comfortable at home with our things, can get the food/water we need delivered right to door, and haven’t killed each other yet 😉 My personal struggles have been with the lack of freedom. I was pretty pissed when we first got informed about our quarantine and it took me a few hours to get over it. I’ve since accepted this fate and moved on but the inability to just walk downstairs to get my favorite chicken stew or head to the pub with friends is annoying. I think today was first day where I was feeling a bout of cabin fever (So many images of Jack Nicholson from The Shining are running through my head right now). I’ve got my computer, iPad, books, movies, games, and little projects to keep me busy (not to mention online teaching for school) and Alison is close by to talk with and provide giddy, upbeat entertainment. So all-in-all it’s not the worst thing. But I keep coming back this lack of freedom. I’d never survive in a prison or any kind of confinement, I’d literally go crazy (All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy). I’ve found it really helpful to take each day and make a little schedule or routine of sorts. I plan meals to cook, try to exercise or get a workout in, do some work for school, do some doodling on my iPad or gaming, make phone calls home with friends and family, then go to bed and repeat. So far so good. Currently, we have 6 days, 23 hours, and 17 minutes until our quarantine is lifted and I can once again taste the smog-filled air of Chinese freedom (Come and play with us, Grant. Forever…and ever…and ever). So long as my sanity will keep till then. For now, Salisbury Steak and Mashed Potatoes is on the menu tonight!

Even kiwis like steak and potatoes – just kidding … They are herbivores!

Alison – The “honeymoon” is definitely over, and the appeal of being in this apartment for 14 days has worn off. In the first week, things around the house like laundry, cleaning, organizing, and school work were good distractors. I will need some other distractors in this upcoming week. The saving graces thus far have been Grant (for daily discussions, bouncing off ideas, and laughs), and Skyping with family and friends back home. Glimpses into the lives of my family and friends in Vermont/Rhode Island/Washington honestly does, for a minute, help me get out of my head. Let me know if you want to Skype in this upcoming week – believe us, we are right here 🙂

Kind words from an HR woman earlier this week


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