Vincent’s Bedroom in Arles, courtesy Wikipedia.

It’s been raining off and on all day here in Philadelphia, but it looks like the skies will clear long enough for me to get a run in later this afternoon. I’m heading over the Tacony Palmyra Bridge to a nature preserve and back, hoping to put in 6-10 miles or more.

All things considered, I consider myself very lucky right now. I’ve been asymptomatic since arriving on March 20th, and knock on wood I’ll continue this way. It’s actually been nearly two weeks since I was in contact with someone who could have been carrying, but considering the current situation, I think I’m justified by exercising an abundance of caution.

I’m also lucky in that I had somewhere to go. As I wrote previously, my decision to leave Tennessee for the time being was driven by predictions that the state’s already-inadequate hospital systems would be overwhelmed. That remains a wise decision healthwise, especially in light of affirmative decisions on the part of neighboring states Alabama and Mississippi to do absolutely nothing to stop the spread of the virus. My worries about state border and highways being shut down also seem to have been prescient, as Rhode Island and Florida take unprecedented actions in the absence of a functional coordinated federal response, and Kentucky’s governor is forced to consider the same. I’m currently living in a de facto mother-in-law studio with a makeshift kitchen I put together in the garage. Thank God I know how to cook.

I’m also lucky in that I’m used to being alone. Self-isolation doesn’t bug me that much. And I’m lucky to have a savings I can tap into—it’s not enough, but should hold me ’til unemployment starts flowing. And I’m lucky to have a lot of creative and athletic pursuits. Things could be a LOT worse.

During the downtime, I’ve been playing more guitar and learning clawhammer banjo. I’ve been playing some tunes on a couple of the live music Facebook groups that have sprung up, including the Quarantine Cover Challenge and Fergie’s Pub Quarantine Mic. I’m writing a lot more too, although some of it has no place here at the Pond. I’ve been doing a lot of video messaging on Instagram. I even picked up a little writing gig that should funnel a couple of hundred bucks into my wallet.

So despite all the unpleasantness, death and destruction, economic collapse, dislocation, and loss of physical contact… well, I’m not doing THAT bad.

More importantly, how are y’all doing out there? How are you enduring your freedom, as we used to say forever ago. Everything is going to be sucky for a long time. Take care of yourselves the best you can.

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