Chronicles of the Virus Day 5

I have the sniffles. 

In normal times, I would accept them as simply my spring allergies arriving, along with the early greening of the world, about a month ahead of time. In these times, I start noticing every little thing about me that's off. These must be difficult times for a hypochondriac. 

Today is Saint Joseph's Day, and Father's Day. It's also the biggest day of the Fallas in Valencia, but they've been cancelled. It's a holiday, and there would be some cars going by. But not now. One car went by all morning. One. Car. I'm sure it will be stopped at some point, and I hope they have a good excuse. 

An excuse is what one man over forty years old had in Vigo when he showed up at a police station, saying he wanted to be detained and that he had the virus. He was sent to a hospital, where he was found to be healthy. Two hours after being sent home, he was back at the police station, begging to be arrested because he was sick and tired of being shut up with his mother. Only half a week has gone by. The man has issues.

Others that were fined were buskers and people selling on the streets. Surely they must have seen a lack of clients? Some people have poor judgment. Like the septuagenarian who was contracting a lady-of-the-street for her services. He was also slapped with a fine and shown the way home. I don't know about the lady. Then there was the bar where the clients had shown up to drink a few wines and ponder the state of things. They were shown that the state of things could be pondered through Skyping. Or the restaurant where a family was eating, and the server and owner explained that they had had a problem in their kitchen. The police explained what the words "take-out" meant. Along with the word "fine."  

The King came on television last night to cheer up his subjects. After the debacle of his father's sixty odd million euros (100 million dollars) he received illegally from the Saudis, most people weren't amused. On the dot, thousands of people in each city came out to their balconies and windows and banged pots and pans in protest. Our daughter, stuck in Santiago, also witnessed it on her street. We were doing a video call on Whatsapp and also heard it. Methinks people wish both crowns gone, both the family and the virus. 

Country dwellers have it easier than city dwellers. We might not have the camarederie of balconies and windows, but we have chores to do, and planting to begin. My husband is cutting the grass now in the area we will plant the potatoes. As the sun grows higher, I will sit outside on our back step, and converse with him and the barn cats. I might even cross the road and go along the dirt lanes in the woods for a little bit. He and his co-workers have been told to take tomorrow off, as well. Normally, his employer doesn't grant puentes, those days between a holiday and the weekend. But, perhaps, he was urged to do so by the Guardia Civil helicopter that dropped down close to see what his employees were doing at a house in a nearby parish. Nobody is in the mood for a hefty fine.

The internet is helping, a bit. Through Google Cultural Institute I revisited the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. I haven't been there since I was in high school, just a few streets away. Back then, entrance was free, at least to students. I remember a sign simply asking for donations. On the virtual tour I saw a Titian that I vividly remember from back then. It's not the same as walking through the halls and physically observing the brush strokes of a painting, or the aroma of the rooms. But it's better than nothing. Today, I might visit the Uffizi Gallery. Someday, I want to go in person. Until then, this will have to do. 

Life continues.


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