Work continues to throw me 10-hour days. There is a lot to do in the background to keep your water and electricity running and your garbage services flowing… and there are a bazillion scenarios you don’t want to know about that have been planned for in the current crisis and upcoming months.
In between all that contingency planning, and all of my normal workload, I’ve been sneaking out for rides at lunch over the past two weeks when possible. The weather has been gorgeous and the green is coming back to the landscape for the fog season (we don’t really have winter here… just fog). I’m seeing three times as many cyclists as normal – which is to say that I see one per 10-15 kms instead of one or maybe two per ride. Bike sales are booming apparently.
Two weekends ago, I also rode to the farm to get my weekly veg box. It was the last weekend the farm gate was open, and I had a nice conversation with the veg farmer and his mum, as usual. Veg boxes continue over winter, but the farm gate isn’t open. You just order and pay online and then pick up the box from his verandah.
The ride to the farm is about 25 kms each way over easy terrain. That Saturday was exceedingly pleasant, like all of March. I didn’t take any photos – it’s all stuff you’ve seen before. But it is great to get out and to know that the organic veg have such a small carbon footprint since I picked them up about 12 feet from where they were grown and transported them home without petrol. The stuff in the feature pic (zukes, Japanese turnip and beets) all got roasted for salads that week. This past week, I made a gorgeous beef stew for the freezer, among other things.
On my last overnight ride on the 23rd, I’d noticed that a heap of farmers had early sown. I had not been keeping track of long-term forecasts, but it meant they were confident that we were going to get a good autumn break this year, and they expected it to be early. This is good because we really never got an autumn break (when the dry season switches to the wet season) the past two years. Once farmers start sowing, they are expecting good rain for germination within 10 days of sowing.
We did get the rain, and enough to be considered the autumn break, over the past four days. We actually got April’s average rainfall in those four days (because April is usually dry and the autumn break and associated rains usually come right around the 25th toward the end of the month). I looked at the long-term forecast and there is an 80 percent chance of above normal rainfall this winter. Yipppppppeeeeeeee!
I’ve also made some virus observations:
1) my gym junkie friends without gym access are as bad as my alcoholic friends without a drink. Like caffeine, excessive exercise is a more socially acceptable addiction than other drugs and alcohol… but man, those friends are really missing their endorphins!
2) People rich enough to own holiday homes are selfish. Go home already – says everybody in rural communities everywhere.
3) Most people are trying to do the right thing at the supermarket, but shopping is still a stressful shit-fight. I’ve worked out how I can only go once a month if I do some rationing.
4) If you are told you can’t do something, it makes you want to do it. I hardly ever see people out exercising/walking dogs, etc when I’m out on the bike, but now that people are supposed to stay home, there are all sorts of people out that would normally have no problem staying home on the couch.
5) The police really are doing spot-checks of people who are supposed to be self-quarantining after overseas travel. I’ve only seen one cop car in six months out here – and now I’ve seen one each day for the past four days.
6) As a far outlier introvert who gets her fill of people through the work week, my life is pretty much the same as always, except my commute distance has gone from 20 kms to 2 metres. We’ve been told to expect to work from home through the end of July. Whinge, whinge! I hate working from home. There’s a long way to go…..
Stay well, everyone.