How has this past year changed your life?

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How has this past year changed your life?

Postby Serpent on February 17th, 2021, 11:34 am 

I'm tired of coming here first thing every morning, only to see a 'no suitable matches' message.
So I'm doing something about it.
Besides, being naturally nosy, other people's state of mind and lifestyle interests me. (Yes, I do look in at lighted windows when driving at night. I do try to read the titles and identify the photos on the bookshelf behind experts interviewed on tv - did, long before they were all on Zoom.
No, I don't open other people's medicine cabinets, diaries or mail.)

What's changed for you?
What changes are permanent and which are temporary?
What have you re-examined?
What have you resolved?
What do you regret?
What do you miss?
What do you hate and want never, ever to see again?
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Re: How has this past year changed your life?

Postby TheVat on February 18th, 2021, 11:40 am 

I thought I didn't mind mask wearing, and was buoyed up by a sense of civic duty. But, really, I'm sick of having my face covered and the way it impairs communication and creates fogged glasses. I hate masks. More generally, I'm sick to death of social distance and the way this virus is so pervasive, diminishing human connection and disrupting so many of our workplaces and social venues.

I went to a hardware store yesterday which doesn't require masks. Like some customers, I have opted to mask up anyway on past visits. It is very large and well-ventilated, so I can understand how some are soothed into feeling okay with unmasking, given that cashiers are behind acrylic screens. Yesterday I walked around, breathing my stale mask air. And then it hit me that I have antibodies, am not virus shedding, and the mask was only serving as a symbolic act, a promotion of masking up. And that customers were sparse. So I took it off. The feeling of freedom that ensued, and a mild "forbidden fruit" thrill, was quite something. I smiled at another unmasked fellow. He gave a knowing nod.
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Re: How has this past year changed your life?

Postby Serpent on February 18th, 2021, 1:20 pm 

My township has had 3 days of 0 new cases this month, so we're a yellow zone starting last week. Today, we have 4 new cases. We generally comply, though some old codger in every supermarket population still doesn't comprehend arrows on the floor, so we all have to stand back and wait until he comes out the wrong end of the aisle.
I had some fun with masks: made a couple of shark faces, a big red-lipped smile and one with beard and moustache; early on, that gave some of my fellow shoppers a giggle. (Unfortunately, I can't sew for beans, so they're just stitched onto a commercial surgical one.) Now, we're all so jaded and bored and fed up with the whole charade, nobody even looks at anyone else's face.
I miss chatting and joking with random strangers.
I miss hardware stores.
I desperately miss book sales and craft fairs.
and i bloody well hate amazon!
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Re: How has this past year changed your life?

Postby doogles on February 18th, 2021, 4:36 pm 

Serpent, thank you for that prompt to consider the effects of Covid19. Things are quite different here in Australia of course and the outbreak has had very little effect on retirees like us in Queensland. My answers to your questions.

What's changed for you? Nothing in the long term so far.
What changes are permanent and which are temporary? Number two daughter could only get through the Interstate border for one visit instead of about three in the last year. My gym was closed for a few months, but I'm getting back close to the old weights I was doing.
What have you re-examined? Nothing really. No adjustments have had to be made in our lifestyle.
What have you resolved? Had no problems associated with Covid19 to resolve.
What do you regret? I regret that nobody has yet discovered any new antiviral medications during this outbreaak.
What do you hate and want never, ever to see again? Panic buying of items such as toilet paper.

Hey, I was amused at your use of the term 'old codger'. I haven't heard it for decades, but it was a very common expression during my childhood. There were always 'old codgers' around and generally getting in the way of everyone.
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Re: How has this past year changed your life?

Postby Serpent on February 18th, 2021, 5:00 pm 

My SO and I have been calling ourselves codgers for about a decade now. I suppose we must admit that we've advanced to 'elderly' while we were too busy looking for the good flashlight to notice.

Overall, nothing much has changed for us, either. Being retired in Canada is easy street - we even got extra beer money from the government - but one of us had to give it back.
We re-allocated some funds - from restaurant meals to charitable contributions;
from road trips to more tv channel subscriptions;
from personal enhancement (Y membership; clothes) to a new car (trade-in, but bigger monthly payment)

There's a thing I've never experienced before: hands-off car buying. Never saw it, never test-drove it; never even heard of it before. Jodi organized everything over e-mail, picked up the new plates, delivered the new car and drove away the old one. (Of-bloody-course, we had to make a stop at the dealership anyway: forgot to give her the rear headrests and extra key.)
Weird! But it was sort of okay, since we've been with the same dealership for 25 years: never had a reason not to trust them.
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Re: How has this past year changed your life?

Postby TheVat on February 20th, 2021, 12:18 pm 

Good thread topic, I hope others will join in.

I share with Doug the hope that we won't see this ridiculous panic buying again. My thought is, if you want extra supplies on hand for emergencies, then always have them on hand, maybe buy a few extra items every time you shop, and rotate the older goods out.

And Serpent touched on all those social interactions and chats with strangers that we all took for granted. People here seem to be going out of their way more to restore the casual chat, which is a positive trend.

I really missed my daughter and son (both have high contact jobs, one of them in a pharmacy) not coming up for the winter holidays. At that time, we had the largest spike of new cases in the United States, so the visit just wasn't going to happen.
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Re: How has this past year changed your life?

Postby Serpent on February 20th, 2021, 2:14 pm 

That's what I hear most from older people: missing family. What hurts even more is missing family events, like weddings and Christmas. And because so many refused to miss Christmas, we saw a big ugly spike in January.
Younger people's refusal to forego parties and fitness clubs result in smaller clusters.

What's the obsession - in both age brackets - with haircuts?
We watched our prime minister grow endearingly woolly on public display.
I usually only notice people's hair if it's horrible or wonderful - maybe 5% at either end of normal. I've become more aware of hair since I hear so much complaining. Not an issue for me. I employ the topiary method: I look in the mirror every morning and snip off any locks that stick out.

Another persistent complaint I hear is "Why are liquor stores essential and church not essential?"
I bite back "because God makes house-calls and Budweiser doesn't" and swallow the joke that immediately suggests. After all, they are genuinely distressed by the loss of a cherished routine. Instead, I try to explain how, in the liquor store, a strictly controlled number of us thread the arrows-and-footprints maze in single, distanced, masked file and silence. It would make a very sad religious service.

What I'm most concerned about - not just as a senior citizen, but as an ex-colleague - is the mental and physical well-being of health care workers. It's been a long, hard road, and relief is still a long way off. Even when it's over, how many will have burned out? How many will suffer irreversible damage? Lingering covid symptoms? PTSD? How many will be terminally disillusioned with the system? How many will we lose?

I do regret not having attended to some chronic issues before: there may not be an after.
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