Yesterday reminded me mildly of what a standard, routine day used to be like.
I was busy. All day long.
Reason being, I went on a supply run.
Now, before you start jumping all over me about the way I’m dressed to protect against corona, I was actually dressed this way to protect against the elements. 🙄
Because. When I left around 10 am the wind coming off Lake Ontario was rather chilly.
Spring in Toronto 🇨🇦 consists of all four seasons, often present inside one day. 😯
When I arrived at the little village-like cluster of stores up by my daughter’s school, I was already overheating. The hoodies came off my head.
That’s because the further away from the lake you are, the quicker the temperatures climb. Ask someone who lives north of the city, far away from any body of water, in a cemented suburbia, how warm it gets there in the summer while I, near my lake, stay relatively cool during the July and August heat waves.
Anyway. Where was I…
Oh yes, supply run aka shopping. My gloves stayed on for the duration of my adventure because…corona. Ugh.
The stores I wanted to visit, two mom-and-pop shops and a very small but efficiently run Shoppers Drug Mart, were literally just down the road from my daughter’s elementary school.
I needed produce, mostly, plus a few more items I was getting low on.
I didn’t wear a mask. A lot of people did, though, and not just store staff…
I wore my gloves and refrained from touching my face.
They tell us now that this virus can live on the outside of a human host for 4 days, and can take 2 weeks to inoculate. I have no interest in introducing this invisible killer into my going-on-3-weeks long quarantined family. Or is it going on 4? I don’t know. Whatever. We’re staying home and obeying all the protocols.
But, as I witnessed, not everyone is observing, and following, protocols which have now become law.
Certainly not the old man licking his fingers while selecting his scratch and win lottery tickets from the tray… OMG.
I had seen him before, this man. He must live in the nearby municipal-run senior residence. He seemed completely oblivious to all the strange happenings around him, including the cashier who was wearing a surgical mask.
Incidentally, the cashier (owner’s son) did not have the plexiglass shield protecting him from germy customers like in the other two stores…nor was he wearing gloves, either. I was perplexed…how dirty is the register? Especially since he was still accepting cash from the old folk who didn’t seem to have debit cards…
It bothered me, watching this unfold from my physically distanced spot. Not only because he endangered himself, but because he will inevitably spread the germs to vulnerable people in the residence. People who may be mobility challenged, already sick, very old, or immune compromised…
It begs the question: does he understand what is happening? Or does he simply not care? I suspect the latter…I mean, the store clerk wore a surgical mask. As did some people walking around the store, and out on the sidewalk…There are bike cops patrolling the area to keep the playgrounds free from congregations, posters and signs everywhere, businesses shut down…
He can’t be that ignorant (can he?), unless he’s in denial…(still? After a month of this?)
Does he have a right to be this defiant, while living in a community desperately trying to get past this mess so we can return to work and school?
Spare me the ‘it’s a free country’ speech.
Can we, can anyone really, ignore a global pandemic while living in a community which, for the most part, is doing their part to reduce the inevitable disastrous outcomes facing the health care systems, and their workers?
Too bad I didn’t have a hockey stick to poke him with. Or an antiseptic wipe to toss at him. Nor did the counter feature a bottle of hand sanitizer although the did have some on a shelf for sale…
I won’t be shopping at that store again. It wasn’t clean like the other stores were, nor well stocked either. I just thought I’d give them a chance at keeping in business…how hard is it to post a sign and provide a bottle of sanitizer for inept customers? And direct them to follow protocol?
Maybe wipe down some of the counters?
And what about the old man? Clearly he can read, he’s buying scratch and win game-type lottery tickets…I watched him reach for his wallet and take out bills, which he then tried to separate by, get this, licking his fingers again…
For the rest of the day I thought about this old man, and others like him while cleaning and washing produce, wiping down packages, storing the food away from pesky teenagers and prepping a bunch of meals.
In between doing that, I spent much of my time running between the front and back yard to soak up the lovely sunshine.
I took this selfie from the front porch which was partially shady, and sheltered from the cold breeze. Note, no hoodie required. 🙂
The children had taken over my sunny spot in the back playing some invented game with complicated rules involving the fence, a ball, two frisbees and the visiting cat from down the street. I could hear the escalation in their bickering so I made my escape to the front yard.
Don’t be fooled by my smile. The old man really had me all discombobulated for the rest of the day.