Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Navigating these times

We accepted an invitation from church friends to go for a walk at Willamette Mission State Park Sabbath afternoon. The Sabbath before the same friends had invited us over for supper, which wasn't something I was comfortable with. While my concerns were respected, they were not shared; this person is convinced that she and her whole family got COVID-19 back in December so are now immune to it (despite the 14 "resurgent" cases on the USS Theodore Roosevelt.) When we got there, Poppy in tow, we joined a much bigger group than we realized were gathering; five families (18 people total, including four current and one former schoolmate of Brian's) and six dogs!

I tried to get Poppy to pose with the poppies....

I casually kept my distance, managing Poppy, taking photos, listening to conversations, and keeping my mouth shut. That – keeping my mouth shut – seems to be a lesson God is repeatedly driving home to me. Now, more than ever, people seem convinced by their preferred sources and nothing can convince them otherwise. To voice a dissenting opinion or share refuting facts does nothing but cause conflict, and who needs that? How I appreciate the blogging community I belong to, the people who read (or at least comment on) my blogs and those whose blogs I follow. Your voices keep me from feeling alone in the madness of this world!

I was happy enough to get out on a beautiful day for a walk and a chance to give Poppy an adventure, but was not desperate to get together with others. And by the time we headed home, I was exhausted – not from the exercise, just the socialization! No question that I'm an introverted homebody well suited for this time of social distancing.

On Sunday I got Bridget sheared. I thought she would take as long as her twin, but thankfully she was easier. Now I just have skinny Bittersweet (who will appreciate that the weather's warmer) and Sarai (if her fleece has finally loosened enough to roo), plus skirting the four that need to be shipped off next week. The end is in sight! (Unfortunately, I also found some green foxtail awns in Bridget's fleece, so the girls' pasture access has ENDED.)

Also on Sunday, Rick came in with a handful of treasure – our first strawberries of the season! I guess that means adding picking and freezing strawberries every couple days to my to-do list. I'd give a king's ransom to have them in raised beds; bending over our densely packed square bed of plants is a back-breaker.
Yesterday Rick and I fixed the fence along the north side of our garden. The bird netting we put above the wire field fencing on one stretch years ago had ceased to be effective, and deer had discovered access. Now it's buttoned up tight, just in time to plant seeds now that the soil has dried out enough.

And Poppy had another playdate with Toby, the 'neighbor boy.' He has a couple tunnels, and yesterday Poppy went through them for the first time. Our neighbor said I could borrow one to play with her more at home, so we took the shorter red one.

A tired puppy is a snuggly puppy:
Poppy had what I think was her last underwater treadmill session today. After her time was up, at my request, we filled the tank to the point where she had to swim if I kept her from standing on her hind legs and measured the depth. Turns out my stock tanks (I have a second oblong tank that doesn't hold water) are deep enough, so I'm going to see if there's a way to reseal the oblong one to continue her resistance work at home, on top of other regular exercise.

That's it for now from . . .


Florida Farm Girl said...

Yeah, I'd be uncomfortable showing up and finding a lot more people than expected. Glad you enjoyed he outing anyway. Poor Poppy, she just has SOOOOOOO..... much to do. It's exhausting. Those strawberries look glorious.

Tim B. Inman said...

"He who laughs last laughs best." I know too, how hard it is to keep my yap shut. I do make a practice of it though. Good for you. Why is it that 'some' people feel they need to convert me and make their views mine, or prove they are 'right'? Well, maybe that's why I live by myself on a farm in the middle of know where!

Am I sounding like Hyacinth Bucket from TV land? "If there's one thing I can't stand, it's snobbery and one-upmanship. People trying to pretend they're superior. Makes it so much harder for those of us who really are." Sorry if I am.

On the Poppy Tank: You can use a piece of plastic to line it - like a waterbed liner for those of us old enough to remember what that was. I still enjoyed our waterbed - except the mornings we awoke to soggy sheets!


Sharrie Brockhaus said...

From one intoverted homebody to another. You are read whenever you post. Sorry that I don't comment enough. (Another problem, I have) Keep up the good work; you are a much better person than I. I will keep reading.

Retired Knitter said...

Yes, I have discovered the same reaction on some social network sites. As a result, I have started downsizing them - I can't delete them because it is where my children post pictures (the reason I joined Facebook to begin with), but if you dare to contribute another point of view - it becomes tense. Don't need that. Keeping my mouth shut is also hard for me. I pretty much did that all my life and now when I think I should be able to express opposing opinions, the current climate is so toxic - it contributes only to stress.

Jeanne said...

I'm sorry you had a rather uncomfortable experience with the larger group you didn't expect! I surely do understand. I'd have been tempted to leave! That, of course would have been rude. I don't like to be rude.

Your neighbors could, if they want to, be tested for COVID-19 antibodies. And even if they have had the virus, who knows about the others who were there. I'm uncomfortable about that.

Poppy is such a cutie - a picture of her with the beautiful golden poppies would be really neat, wouldn't it! It's fun to think of her having so much great playtime with the neighbor boy. Nice of them to loan the tunnel!

Have a great day!!

Michelle said...

Sue, strawberries taste best just-picked, and the first ones of the season are always the sweetest!

Here, here, Tim! And yes, I thought of a liner; I'm just not sure what to use or where to source it. I'm afraid Poppy's toenails would make short work of plastic, too; a custom silicone liner would be the cat's meow!

Thanks for commenting and letting me know you're still reading, Sharrie!!!

I know what you mean about feeling like you should be able to express yourself now, Elaine, but I guess "guarding our tongue" is lifelong advice, not just for the young.

Jeanne, the problem with the antibody test is that NO one knows yet what that means for future infection/re-infection/transmission – not the doctors and scientists, and CERTAINLY not lay-people!

A :-) said...

Oh wow - I think I would have left, but here gatherings of more than 10 are currently prohibited anyway. You were brave. The others might have had COVID-19 in December but it's highly unlikely. I've been struggling, too, to keep my mouth shut - yesterday on my walk I saw four people - a larger than usual number - and none of them were wearing masks, which are required in Illinois if you go outside. Today I saw four people again - three from yesterday without masks again, and one other, with one. I don't even say anything anymore, I just give everyone a wide berth.

Mama Pea said...

While navigating through this time of terrible unease, I try to keep in mind that everyone has a right to their own opinion, but what to do when that opinion impacts others in a possibly negative way? I think it's all making for a lot of stress. More stress than we may even be aware of. I don't want to have to quarantine myself for the next couple of years. I don't want to have to live that way. But I don't want to get sick either. Again, I guess we all have to make our own decisions as long as we can. (Gosh, this all sounds bleak, doesn't it?)

Michelle said...

I think the limit is 25 here, A, but it was still a bit of a shock. Plenty of space to keep my distance, though. I really have to bite my tongue when I see people wearing masks just over their mouth, not their nose – or down just over their chin!

Yes, Mama Pea, the stress is real and it's high, as evidenced by the increase in suicides. The lives lost during this pandemic are not just to COVID-19....

Fat Dormouse said...

I'm still being very wary here in France, only going out if really necessary (except I did go to my favourite discount store, and nabbed a few bargains - but it wasn't busy) I did teach a lesson face to face - but we sat away from each other. I think we will have to accept that - like flu, AIDS, and other viruses - this is with us to stay, and we will have to learn how to live with it.

For you guys in the US I feel for you. With the POTUS saying one thing and medical advice saying another you have to make your own decisions. And , I suppose, make your own risk assessments of individual situations. But keeping your mouth shut is sensible - I have to do this with my students who tell me that they've been having barbecues with friends etc. Is mask wearing prevalent in the US? I put mine on whenever I'm mixing with folk - although I can't teach with it on.

Take care, and keep safe.

Michelle said...

Alison, mask-wearing seems scattershot here. Some do and some don't; some seem to view it as a slight on their "freedom." Some stores and businesses require them; many recommend them. Our president won't wear one; White House staff have said he sees them as a sign of weakness and that they aren't "manly." Makes me want to air-high-five every mask-wearing man I see and say "Yay; REAL men wear masks!"