Written 7 June, 2020.
Our bay is always with me, even at Marg’s in the city. Our neighbour (last lived there over a decade ago) with the high trees writes to say he can only put $500 to the proposed bill of about $7000 to lop his trees. We’d offered to contribute $2500. it’s not enough! We need sunlight for our panels but for him, it’s safety from the rages of summer fires, for majestic trees beetle over his puny house. Worse, trees here often lean so far in their lust for the water,that their huge roots disturb the soil and they topple, pulverizing anything and anyone underneath. But the neighbours are raising a family and have, like millions of others, been put off work and I suppose, a little house on a muddy creek is far from their worries. I sigh, I wait till GG is in a good mood from his writing. I’m not good at biding my time. I’m one to charge in guns blazing. But this time I bite my tongue and wait, and when he’s smiling in his cute lopsided way at one of his own jokes, I suggest we go to plan B and move all our solar panels out onto our pontoon, far away from trees. And that he doesn’t move them – he’s so fiercely determined to do everything, one-armed. .Solar panels are massive and heavy things. I suggest we put the tree money to our builder, grey-haired with gold streaks, heroic, athletic, immune-deficient, virus-threatened. And my timing for once is good.. GG agrees.
When that’s done, I’ll figure out a way to spend the rest of winter out on that sunny pontoon.
And, inspired by a chat with Dy, I get into Ikea not by the long usual hall of trivial temptation, past all those salad bowls and pillows and toilet brushes that tempt- who doesn’t need a new salad bowl? – but through the Exit , armed with the code number of the mattress topper K needs in Marg’s house. Thank you, Dy. The plan almost didn’t work because there were security guards – did they have bludgeons? – no, this isn’t the US – to make sure everyone social distanced, that’s good, so I was almost forced up the escalator into the temptation halls, not good, but a group of people headed off to the right to Click and Collect so i mobbed with them, then turned right and nicked through the check out the wrong way and who could object to that? and found to my consternation that a code number didn’t help because the numbers aren’t arranged like the Dewey system in a library – so 204.719.821 isn’t next to 204. 719.822 at all – foiled but no, there was an obliging lady in yellow near a computer and when I mumbled an excuse, she converted my code number into an aisle and even a location, and hey presto, I left Ikea with only a mattress topper and yes, I have to admit, a shoe rack.
One more shopping adventure: a social distanced line up for Uniqlo where a very bored man with no doubt a very tired arm holds up a thermometer to check the line’s temperatures as we all pass, go into the store and squeeze close together. I’m the only one wearing a mask., one of the hard-won cloth masks from the one who wasn’t self-isolating. No symptoms yet, 6 days later.
No one it seems in the city wears a mask but me. I”m starting to feel like the school swat, the goody-goody. At Uma’s Tango class, I find in our chat that Uma still wears one to go shopping, and and will, he says, till the government says the virus has gone. Thank goodness for Uma. A gorgeous young nam who wears a mask to protect not only himself but his dear parents. So tomorrow, when the feeling i’m the goody-goody swot falls on me, I’ll say:
Uma does too. I’m not alone.
I’ve never appreciated before, how lovely those words are.