During this trying time my brain frequently skitters from thought to thought in approximately the same manner as this flock of sanderlings feeding along the line of an incoming tide. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uh71ExBEXfI
The best I can do under the circumstances is to offer some random thoughts, connected and not.
♦ The Maine CDC is a model of responsible, informative communication. Respect and thanks are due Dr. Nirav Shah and the entire CDC staff, as well as Governor Janet Mills for her clear, calm leadership.
♦ I’m awed by the courage of the nurses, doctors and first responders on the front lines. They truly are heroes.
♦ Great credit goes also to the Maine press. The substance and tone of the news coverage has been uniformly good. I feel informed and comforted, even as the numbers climb and the ramifications multiply.
♦ It’s not easy to find the focus to write fiction, but it’s a balm when it happens. This past weekend I managed to hang out in the world of my imaginary friends for a few blessed hours, spelunking for plot holes, having arcane debates with myself about grammatical construction, adding a dash more tension here, eliminating a bit of wordiness there. It was such a relief to have that escape.
♦ Watching binge-worthy TV helps. Little Fires Everywhere on Hulu is not to be missed. Various mystery/crime shows on Britbox and Acorn are a welcome way to tune out current events overload. World War II-era shows like Foyle’s War are valuable reminders that those who raised us survived years of uncertainty and heartbreak and somehow emerged the stronger for it.
♦ At least it’s spring. The long days are such a lift. Our crocuses are up, the daffodils will be soon. We’re preparing to seed the cold frame-lidded raised bed with spinach, chard and salad greens.
♦ I went online and completed my 2020 census data. Have you? If not, stand up and be counted. Here’s the link: https://my2020census.gov/
♦ Hand sanitizer sure is hard to find in stores, but if you’re like me, you may have little stashes of it in various places around the house. I found a two-ounce bottle in a Crime Bake tote bag from last year, labeled “Creative Juices.” Thank you to whoever thought up this perfect piece of swag. I unearthed another couple of bottles in my golf bag. Happily, rubbing alcohol doesn’t go bad.
♦ Parents of young children stress the need to keep kids on a routine. We don’t talk much about that once we hit adulthood, but in times of stress there’s real comfort in knowing what’s going to happen in the next 24 hours. I find myself making detailed lists and laying out my clothing for the next day before I go to bed each night. Silly? Maybe. Calming? Absolutely.
♦ Isn’t it great how much new technology we’re all learning? Video chats with family and friends lessens the isolation, ours and theirs. One of my colleagues on this blog has been Zooming with his 93-year-old parents. So impressive.
♦ Regular readers of this blog are familiar with the Buchanan/Kenty Sunday beach walk ritual. Most Maine beaches are closed now, a sad but necessary step. In our experience, people are maintaining responsible social distance at those beaches that remain open. If you go out walking—whether at the shore or on one of the many trails maintained by Maine’s local land trusts—mind the need for a 6-foot minimum gap between yourself and others. The outdoors feeds our souls, in good times and bad. Remember to honor the privilege.
Brenda Buchanan is the author of the Joe Gale Mystery Series, featuring a diehard Maine newspaper reporter who covers the crime and courts beat. Three books—QUICK PIVOT, COVER STORY and TRUTH BEAT—are available everywhere e-books are sold. These days she’s hard at work on new projects.