Monday, June 15, 2020

The Reds Weekly Check-In, or, BEE Grateful

JULIA SPENCER-FLEMING: Let’s check in on how we’re all doing, what reopening looks like in our neighborhoods, and any notable events from this past week or upcoming! Last week’s big event for me was a bee invasion upstairs - literally. My Guest Son’s room filled up with bees, much to his consternation. We could see them sort-of-swarming outside, going in and out of a crack between the main house and the addition. They were entirely peaceful honey bees, but even the most peaceable bees aren’t what you want to see inside the house - less so when you can see a hundred of them!


I contacted the Maine Beekeepers Ass’n and left a help ticket on their website, but it seems they’re more or less offline during the pandemic. Instead, we found help through Twitter! My oldest daughter, the Maine Millennial, tweeted about our...issue, and she got a DM from a beekeeper at The Honey Exchange. This led to a phone call, and within a few hours, a wonderful young woman named Thalassa Raasch was at our door, net hat and bee vacuum in hand.


With a little sleuthing, we discovered the bees were reachable via the inside wall of a kneehole closet in Guest Son’s room. We took out everything stored there (mostly old luggage, which I was happy to remove to the attic) and could see a brand new colony was trying to start itself in an uninsulated gap in the wall. (Old house - modern insulation was shoved in where workmen could reach and left off where they couldn’t. Please refer to past JRW posts where I complain incessantly about the cold.) Fortunately, we caught the bees before they were able to begin building, so it was a relatively straightforward job for Thalassa to suck them up into the bee vac. 


We got thank-you honey for saving the bees!
We opened up the windows, closed the door, and gave the room twenty-four more hours to clear out. Fortunately, when we went inside, most of the bees had escaped, leaving behind only a handful of tiny striped corpses to be swept up. Even better, Thalassa reports the bees have been successfully moved into one of her hives, meaning they, and we, can now continue to lead happy and productive lives - twenty-plus miles apart.


What’s buzzing in your life, Reds?


LUCY BURDETTE: That’s a wonderful story Julia! We are in Connecticut now, which is just opening up. I walked on the wild side and went to my favorite local bookstore, RJ Julia Booksellers. Everyone was masked up and there were markings on the floor showing us where to walk, and books! Thousands and thousands of books--definitely essential for these times! I’ve also been going to our farmer’s market on the town green. Again, masks and social distancing required. So many yummy veggies and good bread...I’m in heaven.


Bad news--we are worried about the spike in Florida and people getting crazy in Key West. Praying for everyone to stay sane and safe.


HALLIE EPHRON: The bee invasion sounds terrifying. We’ve had a swarm of thousands of bees take up residence hanging from a bush in our backyard (called the beekeepers and they were moved to safe quarters), but never IN the house. Yes, Florida looks ominous. Ditto Texas (sorry Debs). And Arizona not so good either. Time will tell.


I’ve been slowly crawling out. I went to my local grocery store for the first time, bought plants for the garden and fresh cherries and plums which, ordering for delivery, is a crap shoot.  I clipped my front hedges and the hedge clipper promptly died, so I ordered one from my local hardware store and went to pick it up. They are doing a busy busy business and had it totally under control.


Feeling like small bits of normal are creeping back. We’re in the suburbs so at least we can walk and sit out in the yard anytime we want, and I have great neighbors.


DEBORAH CROMBIE: Our little air conditioning issues are very tame compared to Julia's bee story! So glad you are now happily separated, Julia--a win-win!


Yes, Texas is very worrying. I think we are just now starting to see the results of our "opening" and all the Memorial Day festivities with no masks or social distancing. I don't want to contemplate what will happen in the next couple of weeks after all the protests here.


I've had two masked trips to Trader Joe's at senior hour now--so exciting to pick out my own produce and groceries!! Also, two outings to the farmer's market. It was very busy this Saturday, but more people were wearing masks than the previous Saturday, so maybe that's an improvement. I've also had a friend (waving at you, Gigi!) over for a socially distanced happy hour on the patio, ditto morning coffee with another friend. I would really really hate to give up these small gains, but I think a lot of people here have just decided the pandemic is over, which doesn't bode well….


RHYS BOWEN: We have finally made it safely back to California after 110 degrees drove us from Arizona. The drive went amazingly smoothly. We spent the night at a Hyatt in Pasadena where they have arranged everything really well. We stopped at clean rest area bathrooms. No problems.  Now we are enjoying cooler weather and we’re back in Marin County where everyone wears masks, is polite, and only a few things have opened up… yes, and they have 17 deaths to date. None of them recently.  So I feel much safer than crazy Arizona.


We also go to Trader Joe’s for senior hour. Very well done with no stress. And I’m busy with the edits of my new Venice Stand alone. I’m also on a cleaning and weeding out jag. I’m about to Kondo my house, after my Arizona home that has no clutter. I’ll be ruthless!


HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN: Oh-- BEES! Oh my gosh, that is a nightmare. Just like everything else. Anyway, Massachusetts is apparently doing well, but we shall see. Reading about all of you is fascinating--truly. Jonathan and I are not budging. Not one bit. We have been home for 93 days. Not going anywhere. We have ordered groceries, ordered front porch chairs, ordered plants, planted tomatoes and basil, we have worked worked worked. Jonathan in virtual court, with the full array of personnel, I’m trying to write and be on TV (via Zoom) and it’s like--living on our own private planet. 

"Ryan could win a sixth Agatha with this one." !!!
Sometimes I actually pat the freezer to reassure it that  I am so pleased with it. My hair is awful, but I am persevering with many zooms and appearances and bookclubs, and THE FIRST TO LIE got a Publishers Weekly starred review so I am counting blessings.

I think the whole thing is horribly scary, insane, and I hope we can just all hang in.

JULIA: Check in time, dear readers! How are you doing, what are you doing, and are there any BEES involved? 

116 comments:

  1. Alas, no honeybees involved in anything around here . . . and our garden could use a few of them, Julia . . . all we’ve seen are the carpenter bees . . . .

    Things are slowly opening up here . . . we can eat [outside] at the restaurants, so we went to the local Stewart’s Drive-In. It was good just to be out . . . .

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    1. If I had only known, Joan, I could have mailed them to you. "Oh, yay, a package from Julia? I wonder what it-- aaaaagggghhhhh!" :-)

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  2. Ontario still has the second highest number of new cases in Canada but the rate has significantly dropped to less than 200/day (from 400/day). Because of that steady decline over the past month, we have entered Phase 2 of reopening in certain parts of Ontario on Friday, including Ottawa. Hotspots cities such as Toronto, Windsor are still in Phase 1.

    So shopping malls are open, you can get a haircut or manicure, and restaurant patios are also open at 50% capacity. The first two are not of much interest to me, but the last one was a much awaited change.

    I have been going on walks 2-3 times/week in the morning this past month with my walking group but we had been limited to a max of 5 people (instead of the regular 20-25 people). This number has now gone up to 10 people on Friday. And with the opening of patios, we had a 9 km walk on Sunday which concluded with lunch together on a patio. The Tavern on the Hill had a lot of flexibility to accommodate guests. Since it is located in a regional park, the council allowed them to increase their patio sized by more than double their original size. So the tables were widely spaced apart and the staff were well trained in giving us hand sanitizer multiple times as we ordered our food/drink and enjoyed a meal together outdoors.

    Also after more than 3 months, my favourite Italian cafe and artisan gelato shop opened a small takeout window for limited hours this weekend.

    Since all our big summer festivals are cancelled, these two activities are the first "normal" summer activity I was able to do.

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    1. Yay for a taste of normal Grace. You have been cooking up a storm!

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    2. Yes, it is a good thing that I love to cook, Lucy. Home cooked meals are a neccesity since I have developed a large range of food allergies over the past 2 years (not just tomatoes), so eating out can be a crapshoot. But my chest freezer is full to the brim so I have to slow down and actually eat more of what I cook without gaining weight, lol.

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    3. Grace, I feel so grateful for the small touches of normal life right now. I hope I can continue with that awareness in the future, when (if??) we go back to before.

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  3. We had our own invasion of the honeybees two years ago. They took over a hollow in the oak tree outside our house. As with your bees, Julia, bee keeper to the rescue! We are in SW Florida until the middle of next month. Like Hank and Jonathan, we are living a No Exit kind of life. Everything is ordered and either delivered or picked up curbside with appropriate distancing. Our limited forays have demonstrated that few who are not required wear masks in public. Our numbers continue to grow. We've rented an RV for our relocation to Maine - it's five days on the road and we didn't want to risk hotels and motels yet. Looking forward to settling in and cooler weather!

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    1. The RV sounds like a smart solution Kait. Are you moving to Maine, or just visiting for a while?

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    2. Kait, it's been a LOT cooler in Maine - I slept with a light quilt, a wool blanket and a feather bed last night, and no, my windows weren't open. Pack some sweaters in that RV!

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  4. Bees! I had a distance visit with people I love dearly and we all kept our masks on until we sat down to eat lunch. Jennifer, my bestie keeps backyard bees, but they're nicely hived. I got to play with the two-and a half year old I adore and hear how fluent she is now, and Jennifer and I went for a long walk. It filled my heart to see them all in person (Jennifer shares a two family house with her daughter, son in law, and little Cos, so they've been in the same biome for all this).

    Even though I live half a mile from New Hampshire, I'm staying away as much as I can. Things are more lax up there, except in the lovely little farm I've started going back to for milk, eggs, and seedlings.

    And my son in Puerto Rico, who fell in love exactly before the quarantine hit, got an in-person date at the beach with his new sweetie (they've been courting by video chat for all this time, which is kind of cool), but they didn't touch. Can you imagine being young and in love but not living together, so when you see each other you have to distance? Crazy.

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    1. Edith, my daughter who is moving to Oregon had an entire relationship in the time she was quarantined in Portland. They met online, and found out they lived six blocks from one another there. They went through all the phases quickly, I suspect because of the nature of the pandemic, which has changed everyone's perspective so much.


      She's back in Boulder now, getting all her ducks in a row to move permanently, while her roommate holds down the fort in Portland.

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    2. By "all the phases" - do you mean it ended, too? That's amazing!

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    3. Yes. He was a really cute and super nice guy, but I don't think they'd have dated at all if there had not been a pandemic, and he hadn't lived so close. She really wants to get married, and he's been there, done that, and has children already. Ordinarily, she would have made a hard pass.

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    4. Karen, I suspect there's going to be some sort of phrase for those sort of relationships after the shutdowns are all over - pandemic buddy or some such. I suggested to the Smithie there should be a new sort of dating app that matches you based on your level of exposure - you both live in a bubble, you match!

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    5. Corona-dating? Covid-dating?

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    6. I'll ask John David - but his might term be in Spanish. He and this woman (who is darling and shares values with him) are definitely a match in terms of being careful. They're hoping to get tested at the same time and then immediately move into touching. ;^)

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  5. Two more upcoming openings I am looking forward to.
    Curbside pickup of library holds starts this week by appointment. I am picking up 5 books that have been "ready" since March 15.
    And my local Farmers Market is opening on Thursday. The other FM have had limited online ordering and pickup 1 day each week but my purchases have been hit or miss. My local (Bywarf FM) is open every day so I am looking forward to getting more seasonal produce: local asparagus, strawberries are still available with the cold spring putting their availability behind schedule.

    Edith: I will see if Byward FM has any garlic scapes. The season is usually done by May but maybe with the cold spring they will be available.

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    1. Grace, my CSA farmers usually have garlic scapes in the early fall. I always thought it was a by-product of planting the bulbs, but now I wonder if they're deliberately cultivating it.

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    2. Scapes have to get cut off so the energy of the plant can go to growing the bulb. Otherwise, the bulblet at the top of the scape will flower and make seed.

      It's a byproduct, yes, but I think it used tot be wasted before someone realized the food potential for this excellent second crop.

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    3. Interesting, Julia, about your CSA. I have never seen garlic scapes here in the fall.

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  6. No bees here Julia.

    I'm doing fine as I have been throughout the whole debacle.

    I'm back to work which is a bummer since I'll be making less money now than I was just sitting at home.

    I have no faith in the ability of others so I fully expect the pandemic to continue. I just saw a report on the news this morning that said the CDC doesn't expect the virus to loosen its grip on the US until 60-70% of the country is infected.


    I'm still spending the majority of my time at home. And when I'm out, I wear my mask. I've added mowing the lawn to my household chores, which is an adventure since the pollen is terrible.

    My local comic shop has reopened for inside purchases. I went but I was in and out pretty quickly.

    My local Barnes and Noble opened up on June 12th. I went in to grab up some books but found that during their shutdown they'd reorganized the store. The mystery section has been moved and seemingly condensed. I wanted to grab up some Sheila Connolly books because they used to have quite a number of them. But they must've pared down the titles because they had far less than they used to have for her. At least I have the arrival of some new ARCs to look forward to.

    I think other than that, I'm not going to be doing much different than I have been.

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    1. The pollen is terrible isn't it Jay? I keep sneezing and snuffling and then get afraid I caught the virus!

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    2. Same here on the pollen - and the worrying!

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    3. I don't worry that I've gotten the virus because of the pollen. I'm not quite at that level of paranoia (yet). It just causes havoc with my nose and makes it so that I have to constantly blow my nose to keep it clear. Which is a real pain when you are trying to mow the front and back yard all in one go.

      At least I remembered to wear a hat so my head doesn't get burned.

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    4. Yes, wear that hat and make sure you sunscreen yourself, Jay! The sun can kill you, and we need you around here for a long, long time.

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  7. I've been out for a haircut and a couple of trips to our favorite farm market, masks and social distancing of course. And I walk Penny in the neighborhood daily. Other than a few driveway visits with friends -- we stayed in the car -- I've not been anywhere since March. Last week Julie decided she couldn't go another month without going to Wegman's, so we are now buying our own groceries. She is very very careful, and Weggie's is limiting the numbers of people in their stores at a time, enforcing masks, one-way aisles, all that and a bag of chips. Literally!

    NY has done a great job of not only flattening the curve but getting the plague on the decline. This, I think, is mostly due to the daily press conferences by our governor. He's dead serious about mask wearing. Now he's also dealing with the protests, and we are about to see an uptick in cases. However, our R factor is below one, so maybe it won't be the disaster seen in other parts of the country.

    Besides reading and binge watching you-name-it, I've been baking bread. At present I'm mastering ciabatta, more fiddly than other varieties but worth the time and effort. The bigga has to be started the night before, and the dough is very sticky. Thank the gods that be for a Kitchenaid and a dough hook.

    Baby Sgt Pepper is three weeks tomorrow, and he is due to take up residence by August. Yes, I know we are crazy to be getting a puppy, but don't judge. We were crazy anyway.

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    1. Good luck with the ciabatta, Ann. I have not tried making that one yet, although I have the recipes for both the bigga and the bread. Making several loaves of sourdough and focaccia have been my baking successes. But I think my home baking will slow down as the temperatures starts to rise as high as the 90s late this week and the local artisan bakeries begin to open full-time. My sourdough starter will wait patiently in the fridge until I am ready.

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    2. we do not think you're crazy to get the puppy, we are insanely jealous! (or I am anyway:)

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    3. Lucy doesn’t think you’re crazy to take on a puppy now... think about that ... I’ll look for your ciabattas on facebook

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    4. Yes, Hallie, I noticed that too. Five bucks says Lucy has a new pup before the summer is over.

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    5. I think John OWES Lucy a new puppy after that bike-riding incident. :-)

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    6. Sgt. Pepper will be a blessing on your house, Ann. I love your kind of crazy.

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    7. I see another "Pandemic Parade of Pets" in our future!

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  8. Things are going pretty well here in Ohio, though I worry about loss of focus. The numbers indicate our new cases peaked in late April and the trend line has been downward ever since. I expected to see a post Memorial Day spike, but am thankful to have been wrong on that so far.

    I have had my hair cut -- but my stylist works all alone in a loft, so I didn't have to cross paths with anyone but him, and I trust him to follow all the cleaning protocols. I grocery shopped in the senior hours throughout the crisis, and have now ventured in a time or two during non-senior hours when I was sure the store wasn't busy. I wear my mask and give a wide berth to anyone not masked.

    The two scariest things I have done are going to Mass and going into my office to work. I would not go back to church if I didn't feel VERY confident in the mitigation plan. But truly, we are seated only in every-other-pew, one family at each end with a big space in the middle, and other than the one moment when we face someone (about an arm's length away)to receive communion, I am always far more than 6 foot from anyone else. I recognize still that this is my highest risk activity.

    My office opened in May, and about two weeks ago I started going in two days a week, still working from home the rest of the time. That made me really nervous, but there aren't too many people there, thanks to a good plan. And when we meet (which is the key reason I started going back in some -- communications were getting worse, with a lot of people seeing each other occasionally in the office but some of us not at all) we hold the meetings in a big training room so the three or four of us meeting can easily sit 6+ feet apart.

    Last Friday was a red-letter day for me in that I actually ate outside my house for the first time. But it was less adventurous than it seems. There is a corner bar just outside our neighborhood, and since the re-opening they have roped off an outdoor beer garden and have an amazing smoked ribs food truck sort of permanently parked there. We walked down to that corner, got our ribs and a beer, and sat in a corner of the beer garden well distanced from anyone. It felt amazing to be out eating, but I still wouldn't go many other places. I actually have a high degree of trust in restaurant owners and staff -- they have all kinds of incentives to make sure their place is clean. It is my fellow diners who scare me.

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    1. We ate out at our favorite brew pub last week - well distanced, felt very safe. Such a thrill to eat at a restaurant!

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    2. And by "out" I meant outside!

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    3. Susan, I felt the same about eating out for the first time on a patio with a group of friends yesterday. It felt so good, especially since patio season ends here in late October. But I agree with you that I will be more wary about dining inside (when it becomes available).

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    4. Susan, I'm both envious and nervous that you got to go to Mass. Our bishop has ordered all churches to stay shut until July 1 (and he may revisit that, depending on how things are going later this month.) I really miss taking communion, but I'm also worried about what actually being in church would entail. It doesn't help that St. Luke's is in Portland, the place with the largest number of infections in the state. I'll see how I feel when the reopening happens, I guess.

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    5. Julia, I understand -- I have a lot of mixed feelings about it, too. Our Bishop stresses you don't HAVE to go, but he did allow the churches to start offering Masses again three weeks ago. As I said, I do feel good about all the procedures put in place. And still worry a little.

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  9. We’re doing our 8th jigsaw - Ursula andress!

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    1. Saving the hardest for last! I'll be listening for your screams of frustration, Hallie. Or maybe I'm just over-identifying. LOL

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    2. Hallie, is she rising from the water in her white bikini? My dad used to refer to her as Ursula Undress.

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  10. How relieved you must be Julia that the problem with the bees is so well resolved.
    Here it goes well as I don't live in the immediate area of Montreal that have been the worst in Canada.
    Here, many things open up gradually with distanciation and new rules. I wear a mask when I go somewhere.
    My great joy last week was my trip to farmer's market and to strawberries farm. I was so craving for local strawberries,,it was so good.
    I also went to my hairdresser to have my hair close-cropped as I was tired of my too rare, too thin and too crazy hairs. I was not worried to go because my hairdresser owns her place with only one partner and even before the pandemic the chairs were at a six feet distance.
    Other great pleasure, my daughter and SIL came to visit, at a distance, no hugs, but it was very good to see them in person.

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    1. Isn't it such a pleasure to see loved ones in person, Danielle? I'm grateful for all the ways we can meet online, but the longer you go seeing one another through the computer screen, the more you miss being face to face.

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  11. Three cheers for Thalassa, for coming to the rescue, of both the bees and your family! (I so admire her name, by the way.) Bee vacuums must be among the world's best inventions.

    I have never seen so many bees as we have here, at least not in many, many years. In addition to my flowers and vegetables, we seeded our new lawn with a mixture of fescue and white clover, which is flowering all the time. Yesterday as I was watering the garden I watched at least 30 bees, both honeybees and bumblebees, working the clover.

    A beekeeping friend in Canada (BC, Grace) told me these bees could come from hives as far away as 3 km. I know there is at least one hive nearby at a neighbor's, and I'm sure there are more, too. It makes me really happy to see them, especially since I specifically planted lavender, catmint, and some other flowers to attract them.

    When I had enormous lavender plants at the farm, before a freak winter cold killed them, they would just swarm with honeybees. They never bothered me when I cut the flowers, either. I'd just move slowly, and they would move on to another spot. In contrast, the guy who used to cut our grass once got too close with the lawn tractor and they all took off after him. He didn't get stung, but he sure had a story to tell!

    We've stuck pretty close to home, or at least I have. I still have this stupid cough, but I'm finally seeing my doctor in two weeks. Two weeks!! It's taken months to get an appointment. My Northern Virginia daughter and her husband, and their dog, came to visit for four days last week. They had been quarantined very strictly there, so it felt pretty safe for all four of us. They were the first other human beings to cross our threshold since mid-March, and it was so, so good to be together. To have a glass of wine together. To cook and share a meal together. It was so normal.

    We almost went out to eat for the first time last night, and then decided not to yet. We still have a freezer full of good stuff to eat, and the garden is starting to produce fresh stuff, so it didn't seem urgent to get out.

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    1. This is the first year that I have a large pot of lavender growing on my balcony garden. I have definitely noticed more bees coming to visit my little urban garden, but that's a good sign.

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    2. Karen, the funny thing is we've long managed the lawn and garden to make it bee, butterfly and bird friendly. Lots of native flowers, not much grass, lots of violets and clover as part of our ground cover, no pesticides or herbicides, etc.

      As I told Thalassa, "I welcome bees, just not in my house!"

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  12. I think this is so fascinating! What a cross-section of decision making. When I go for my front yard/driveway walks, I see people on the sidewalk, alone or with their kids, taking walks. I would say half of them don’t have a mask. I have to say, I don’t understand that. if they are alone, OK, I hope they have a mask handy, at least. see so many pictures of people without them, in groups. I wonder if they think they are just somehow… Lucky? it’s all I can do not to yell at them. But I don’t!

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    1. It makes me crazy, too, Hank. I can understand when I see a family or a couple walking together, but yes, have a mask handy if some OTHER family is doing the same thing. And people without masks in the grocery store...I don't say anything, but inside my head, I hear my grandmother saying, "That's just trashy."

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    2. I walk, either alone or with Hugh, on quiet town streets, and I always bring a mask but I don't pull it up unless there is some unavoidable proximity. We cross the street a lot to avoid other walkers. But when I ventured onto our lovely rail trail last week, I was furious at all the "trashy" people not wearing masks and letting their dogs wander close to me. Just...no! Haven't been back.

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    3. I haven't even thought about taking a mask when I walk my dogs, but then no one gets anywhere near me with the two German shepherds!

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    4. I have to admit, I don't bring a mask on my walks -- but in our neighborhood (the only place I walk) everyone has been very cooperative about crossing the the street or stepping out into the street to avoid proximity, so I just don't anticipate being close to anyone. We all laugh and acknowledge each other's efforts.

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  13. Julia, so happy the bee issue was resolved! When I was very pregnant with #3, I heard buzzing in the nursery wall and poked the sheetrock, which was paper-thin. A swarm of yellow jackets swooped out. I stumbled through the door and slammed it shut, then jammed towels under the door. A horror scene right out of Stephen King. Pregnant women get top priority. The exterminator arrived within the hour, suited up, and ventured inside the nursery with his fogger. He tore a huge hole in the sheetrock and discovered the yellow jackets had been coming in under the siding for years. What a mess! We repaired the sheetrock, repainted the room, and had the rug sanitized. And for years afterwards, I obsessively ran my hands over the bedroom walls just to make sure we didn't have another nest.

    My husband still does the food-shopping and the library has curbside pickup for books on hold. Life goes on, one healthy day at a time.

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    1. Oh, my God, Margaret that does sound like something out of a horror movie! Yellow jackets! I'm so grateful my colonization was a bunch of extremely chill honeybees.

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  14. There is another new service that has recently opened up that I am NOT looking forward to. I had an dental appointment originally scheduled for March 19 that was cancelled due to the shutdown. Well, the dental office contacted me to reschedule my 1.5 hour appointment (full annual checkup, xrays, cleaning) for mid-July. So I have a full month to fret about this (or start worrying less).

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    1. Grace, I had my teeth cleaned last week, and honestly, it was pretty amazing. They met me at the door, and I was not allowed inside until other patients were released. Masks are required, and they stopped me, gave me two squirts of hand sanitizer, aimed a thermometer at my forehead, and gave me the sanitized pen to answer the questionnaire. Then they SPRAYED THE BOTTOMS OF MY SHOES before I was allowed off the mat at the door.

      Both the hygienist and the dentist were both masked and wearing face shields, and the checkout station was sanitized and there is a plexiglas sheet in between the desk and the patient.

      It was very comfortable, way more so than almost any other situation I've been in since the shutdown.

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    2. Same here, Grace, except I didn't get the shoe spray. :-) Everything was sanitized, plexiglassed and mask-and-shielded, with only a few patients allowed in at a time. They had changed some of what they do, as well - no tooth polishing because it throws up an unacceptable amount of aerosols. I felt very safe and comfortable.

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    3. My annual appointment for cleaning and checkup , taken last year, is this week on the 18th . They assure me that all is done securely, as requested by the situation. They ask me to come masked at the exact time scheduled. I'll go.

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    4. Thanks for sharing your experiences, Karen and Julia.
      I think they will still do the polishing and scaling for me. Yes, it is the spraying up of aerosols that bothers me. I have really bad teeth and normally have to go back every 3 months to get the scaling done to maintain what is left of my teeth.

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    5. My annual will be in August, so I'm glad to hear that dentists are taking such precautions. I'm sure mine is, too.

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  15. Georgia was the first to open up and it did us no favors. Now sadly, Atlanta seems to make the headlines every day and I am so sad and disappointed. We really liked our police chief. Listen to her TED talk. We can only hope that good dialogue will continue and progress, real progress will happen and last.
    On a lighter note, no bees here. We stay in and have groceries delivered, being of a superior (see senior) age. I do dart into the pharmacy to pick up pre-paid items. My fruit and vegetable man is back! He is masked and puts it all in the back of your car. I have been buying from him and his late father all 40+ years of my married life and my mother bought from his father once my father could no longer garden. The big farmers' market with bread, etc. is open now too but it's too crowded even with distancing for me. We used to get take-out once a week but now that restaurants are fully (100%) open, that's just too many people in the mix so I am cooking 7 days now. Fortunately I like to cook and my husband likes left-overs and I space them out and don't repeat immediately or repurpose.

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    1. Atlanta, I figured your police chief was one of the good ones precisely because she DID resign. Unlike other governmental figures, she clearly did feel responsible.

      So glad you have a great fruit and veg man who gives you good produce at a safe distance! Our CSA farm has changed their pick up to keep things safe - customers drive in along a loop, stop, stay in the car, and get their bag or box placed in the back of the car. Picking you own stuff and using the swap table was always fun - not to mention chatting with the young farmers - but this seems like a smart way to protect everyone.

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    2. Julia, I agree that taking responsibility was the right thing to do but we will miss her and now morale is low. She didn't leave the police force just the position so I hope she can continue to do good things.
      Fresh fruit and vegetables make so much difference. I have a friend who lives in the MS Delta and she has nothing. She gets everything from Amazon so nothing fresh which seems so wrong in the summer time in the South. I Zoom with her and other college friends and she hasn't seen anyone in person for months. She is a widow and finally at the end of this month her son, daughter-in-law, and granddaughter are coming for a visit after they self-quarantine.
      Think where we would all be if we didn't have phones or the internet.

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  16. So glad your bee adventure ended well, Julia! My only bee story was several years ago when I noticed a brown something in a little tree. It looked an awful lot like a cat I used to have but knew it couldn't be that. I cautiously went out to check on it - maybe a raccoon? As I got close I could hear the buzzing. Oh my! A swarm of bees were resting on a limb of that tiny tree. I didn't know what I could do or should do so I watched and waited. Several hours later they rose up in a huge swarm, went past my window and up over the roof. Apparently they had been waiting for their new queen to take them somewhere. The entire experience was amazing.

    Here in my rural county there have been 2 deaths but several people have tested positive and then went on to recover. I only go out once a week, wearing my mask, to get groceries. But later this week I have my mammogram appointment which I had rescheduled two months ago. Then I'm having my eye cut and I admit to being a bit nervous about that.

    They tell me the library will be open (somewhat) soon!

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    1. I hope so! I'd be very nervous about getting my eye cut as well! (Actually, I've postponed getting cataract surgery on my second eye for the foreseeable future. My good eye is now 20/15, and the other one will only correct to 20/100 after surgery - amblyopia - so I figure, why risk it?)

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    2. Yikes! Yes, hair, of course hair! I think it is a sign of old age to say one word when you are thinking another. Now typing one word when thinking another.

      My initial appointment for cataract surgery is in two months, after having been delayed at least that long.

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  17. The only bees in my life are buzzing around my garden-bed blooms; phew. I've been following your bee story, Julia, Via The Maine Millennial on Twitter: wow!

    As for opening up, I wear a mask when out shopping and was surprised (shocked?) to see that in a major grocery store the clerks were not uniformly wearing either masks or gloves. Not sure I need to go back to that store...

    On the personal opening-up front, we went up to our cottage on Lake Winnipeg for an overnight; the first one since Christmas time. We saw no one and greatly enjoyed the expansive view and the sound of birdsong. It was a really wonderful breather from the city.

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    1. Oh, Amanda, I bet that was a wonderful break. Are you able to be at the lake during the summer, or do you go back and forth?

      And yes, I'd find another store to patronize. I can excuse seeing other shoppers unmasked - it can be difficult for store personnel to police that. But there's no excuse for the employees to be going around potentially spreading the virus (and other germs.)

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    2. I hope to get a stretch of time up there in July. Normally, my mother would join us, but, sadly, this year, that won't happen due to COVID-19 restrictions on travel.

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    3. I have only been in Trader Joe's, but all the staff is masked, the checker wears gloves, only alternate registers are open, and the checkout has plastic shields. They sanitize all the carts and you bag the groceries in paper, no bringing your own, which I miss but agree their policy is sensible.

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  18. So glad to hear how cautious you all are bee-ing (sorry, couldn't resist). Here in northern Ohio, I'm anxious about summer coming--it means lots of visitors for the Lake Erie attractions--the lake itself, Cedar Point amusement park, Kalahari, etc. I have ventured out throughout to do the grocery shopping and curbside pick-ups. I wear a mask whenever I go out and always have my own bottle of ham samitizer (my 5-year-old grand-nephew's interpretation of hand sanitizer) with me, use the senior-hours shopping times, but find many many people around here maskless and totally ignoring social distancing. We are a sliver of a two-county area sandwiched between large bubbles of COVID-19 cases/deaths in Toledo to the west and Cleveland/Lorain to the east. People seem to feel that because our numbers are and have been low, they will stay that way. Like Hank, I want to scream at people, but I don't.

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    1. Flora, all you can do in that situation is take care of yourself and do whatever you can to minimize your exposure. Smart people stuck in areas where everyone else seems to be sticking their fingers in their ears and saying, "La La La I can't hear you" are like the heroes of disaster/apocalyptic/zombie films. The extras ignore or deny what's going on and eventually get swept away by a tidal wave/squashed by a meteor/eaten. Meanwhile, the protagonists, who have been paying attention and acting appropriately, survive to see the end credits.

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  19. No bee infestation here, which is something I hadn't thought to be grateful for, but am now adding to the list. I went out to early senior shopping this morning at a local grocery--only the second time I've been in a store since March. I've been doing delivery or curbside pickup for groceries and any other necessities. I've been having books delivered from my various local bookstores, but over the weekend I did curbside pickup for a book I didn't want to wait for! Our library is opening this week for returns, so I can take back the huge stack I stockpiled before everything shut down. Next week we can make appointments to pick up books on hold--I cannot wait for that!

    In just a few minutes I'm on my way to the eye doctor. Other than my two quick visits to the local grocery, this will be my first time going anywhere. They seem to have all the necessary precautions in place, so I'm not too nervous about it.

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    1. Cindy, I'm glad to have added to your gratitude list! I've been to the doctor and the dentist since the shut down, and in both places I felt extremely safe. One thing I kept reading was that it's important not to let fear of Covid-19 compromise your health in other matters. I've got my annual physical coming up, and I plan to go.

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    2. Eye doctor visit went well. Someone met me at the door and took my temperature before I could go in. I didn't see another patient and everyone who worked there had on masks, and were sanitizing as we went from room to room. Even better news is that the glaucoma they've been watching for the last 2 years has not happened, and after today I can go back to once a year visits!

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  20. My house had been empty for three years when I bought it. The prior owners warned me that the hot water heater was dead. What they didn't tell me was that bees had taken up housekeeping in the water heater closet and had a fully-established hive behind a brick wall there. I needed a new water heater. The water heater guys would not install it in a closet full of bees. I did not want to tear down structural walls. I'm afraid it did not end well for the bees. I still feel sorry about that but I do enjoy my hot water. There are plenty of bees in my hedges and gardens, and I try to have native plants that bloom nearly all year round for them.

    I'm still mostly at home, except for the occasional socially-distanced happy hour, which is great fun. I haven't gone grocery shopping or hit the farmers market, but I did stop by a nursery one mid-week morning when there were very few people there. We were all masked and respectful of each other, and it was fine.

    On the other hand, I went for dog food the other day, opted to pay inside--just to try it out--and discovered I hadn't used my debit card in person for so long I had forgotten my PIN. Fortunately, I had backup plastic, and was able to change my PIN to one I do remember once I got back home.

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    1. Gigi, I'm laughing at forgetting your PIN. For me it was cash - we paid cash for something last week and I felt like I was taking some sort of ancient runic inscriptions out of my wallet, it had been so long since I handled bills.

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  21. The only bees I see regularly are the carpenter bees that are drilling holes in the carport beams. But this weekend we ventured out to buy plants for our small flower beds (first time out anywhere other than curbside delivery runs) so I hope we will have bees eventually. Since we were in the garden center it wasn't too scary, but there were crowds inside the store. We made our purchases and left asap.

    Today I am getting my haircut! It has been 126 days since my last cut and I am so desperate that I am willing to go inside. I called the shop to see how they are doing things before I made an appointment - the stylists are working split shifts so there are only half the number of folks in the building at a time. Masks must be worn by clients and stylists. Frequent cleaning, etc. So I am giving it a shot. All this hair on the back of my neck is making me crazy!

    Alabama is once again on the top of the list of highest percentage increase of cases over the weekend, which is not a surprise since it seems like EVERYBODY here thinks the whole thing is over. :( Hank and Flora, I do yell at people, but only from the inside of my car. It makes me feel better!

    I hope as the summer progresses that all of you will remain safe.

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    1. Stay safe, Mary! I love Alabama (my father's family is from Tuscaloosa) but it does drive me crazy. There's are reasons why - despite the many temptations - I don't live there, and it's not the hot summers.

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  22. Julia, we had once been away for three weeks and arrived home to find college aged son had written note on the front door. “ the house is full of bees. I had to leave for fear of death”. Yes he was a drama major! But luckily my braver son in law had been in with bombs. There were carpets of corpses on every surface. Welcome home

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    1. LOL! Rhys, what a welcome! The weather had better be much, much kinder than Arizona, considering all you went through to be home again.

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  23. Bees! That is very scary. Happy for the happy ending. Don't people have the most astonishing expertise! We have been having ants, quite harmless but I do not want them crawling in my kitchen!Neighbors had it too, so we finally broke down and shared a highly recommended exterminator.Otherwise life is slowly, slowly changing here in NY. We are continuing caution. Living in a an urban neighborhood, my insurance-preferred pharmacy and nearest supermarket are right near each other and just a few minutes walk away and I need some exercise (arthritis) We normally use grocery services a lot, but for awhile it was truly impossible to get a delivery slot. So we have been making well-masked, cautious pharma/food trips all along. Most (but not all - dummies) others out there are equally cautious.We do occasionally take a walk in neighborhood or to nearby Prospect Park - it is big(very big) - distancing no problem.Other than that, pretty much sheltering. I miss the farmer's markets but remain concerned about crowds- they are normally packed. Crowding of emonstrations worry and scare me. I need cataract surgery followup visits, long postponed. In nearby NJ, my grandson's pre-school is reopening soon. Should I be happy for my exhausted daughter/active,social grandchild, or really, really worried? Not sure. Be well and safe everyone

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    1. That's kind of where we all are, isn't it, Triss - should I be happy or really worried?

      NY seems to be handling this so very well, and I'm grateful for it. My dad lives upstate, near Syracuse, and even there, with few cases, they've only just opened up for curbside pickup from restaurants, etc. The reason the country's case level is going down is because of New York, New Jersey and New England's statistics. If you remove those states, the line is definitely trending upwards.

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    2. Grocery delivery availability - ugh! I live in Ocean County, NJ which has one of the highest percentage of seniors in the state all of whom want their groceries delivered. I have been grocery shopping all along, but trying to avoid the crowds. We do have a small market nearby which we’ve ordered from a few times when we only needed a little. They mostly do deli meats and prepared meals but have added to their list of staples as time went on. The meatloaf and potato salad are wonderful. But I can’t avoid the supermarket altogether since we use lactose free milk and my husband is gluten free (fortunately not celiac, but has to avoid it for his metabolism).

      NJ has been slow to open up; outdoor dining is allowed beginning today and hair salons and barbers can open next Monday. I need a hair cut so badly! I don’t care about the gray but have to get this mane cut especially with the hot and muggy weather coming. I gave my husband a very non-professional hair cut a few weeks ago. He is very gracious and says it looks fine but nobody is going to hire me as a barber.

      We have been getting out all along, needed for our mental health. There is a National Wildlife Refuge about an hour away that has a drive through wildlife trail which never closed at all. You can stop along the way and get out of the car and there are very few people around so it is easy to keep a distance. We both like to take pictures of shore birds so it has been a refuge of another sort for us. And we have been taking drives without even getting out of the car just to get away from our (nice) community once in a while. This past Saturday was heaven! We got to go on a whale watching boat ride - limited capacity, masks inside and outside if you couldn’t stay 6 feet away from those not in your household.

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    4. Julia, responding to "NY seems to be handling this so very well, and I'm grateful for it. " Yes, our governor has really surprised us. Crisis seems to have brought out the best in him.Your dad is near Syracuse? Where, if I may ask? I've lived in NY city my whole adult life but I grew up in Watertown. Syracuse was our "big city", 70 miles south on the I-81.

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  24. I just got on line, having done a few chores and love to hear what our JRW authors are doing. Julia, the bee story has such a happy ending!
    We are still mostly isolated. We do our own shopping, masks and gloves and have from the beginning. We had friends over to sit on the porch last week, distanced but we were eating take out, so, masks were off.
    Connecticut should continue to improve although the demonstrations were very busy and crowded so, I just hope that people who attended did not reignite the contagion. Irwin and I are going for a walk now. I'll check in later to see how everyone else is.

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  25. I just got back from a trip to the grocery store and, aside from the fact that they had no fresh garlic at all (how can that be??), it was a good trip. As Ann said, Wegmans does a good job. We're in Phase 3 of NYS's opening here in the Finger Lakes area but I'm not ready to visit a restaurant or any other store that isn't absolutely necessary. My little town of 7500 has had seven COVID deaths and the highest number of cases of any community in our county so I'm being careful. I did get a haircut but I'm lucky to have a retired hairdresser in the family who came to my house and we stayed outside on the deck (and wore masks).

    I had a hornets nest in the attic of the last house I lived in and they got into one of the bedrooms. They did not have the happy ending Julia's honey bees did though.

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  26. Not much new here. Working from home, and it's the calm before the storm. I'm back to getting allergy shots, this will be my second week getting them. Got to build back up to maintenance again.

    Do keep in mind two things. Testing has gone up, so we will get more positive results from them. Second, yes we will also see an increase from things opening up again. But this is here to stay, at least for the foreseeable future. We were never going to make it go away by staying locked up inside all the time. That is impossible. We were just trying to keep from overwhelming the hospitals and give the medical community a chance to hopefully find something to help us fight it when we do get sick.

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  27. Bees!!!! What a story this is, and with a lovely ending.

    Donald and I are, like Hank and Jonathan, still sticking close to home. The only places we have ventured are to the post office (after hours) to pick up our mail, and to pick up groceries curb-side and that's it. There are plenty of projects keeping us both busy around the house and we're fine with that. I'm pretty angry with people refusing to wear masks, truth be told, and don't feel the least bit guilty about placing blame. My hair's a wreck, but really - in the overall big picture, that's a very, very small thing.

    Yes, we're still sheltering. And as long as NC numbers keep going up, we will continue doing so.

    Going out because politicians say it's okay isn't quite enough, in my humble opinion. Not when scientists are saying differently and not while scientists are being fired for releasing the truth. The number of available hospital beds in NC is scary shameful.

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  28. Julia, Love that there is a R. Julia Booksellers in the photo. No bees, though I did see some strange looking insects outside on my nature walks.

    We always wear masks every time we venture outside our home. Unfortunately, there are always a few people NOT wearing masks. It is not always possible to do social distancing, though we can TRY!

    I just wrote an email to our Governor in California saying that I HOPE that we flatten the curve Before we re-open. Unfortunately, too many people feel that jobs are more important than their health. Remember Tesla cars? The CEO threatened to move the factory if workers are not allowed back to work. So of course they return to work. And NOW there are reports that some of the workers in Alameda county have come down with the virus.

    What would happen if EVERYONE wore masks? I tried to explain to a neighbor that even if I am NOT exhibiting any symptoms, I ALWAYS wear a mask because you never know. There are reports that you can pass on the virus even if you do NOT exhibit any symptoms.

    Sorry for venting here. We cannot control what other people do. All we can do is do what we CAN like me for example - wearing a mask so I do not infect others.

    Only places we ventured out to is grocery shopping. I am Way overdue for a haircut. It is getting too long. My hair salon is supposed to open in a couple of weeks. I have a bad feeling that it will be delayed again with the rise in virus cases. We will see.

    Some places in California are starting to re-open, though I am not comfortable. The library started curbside pick up and I still prefer to borrow ebooks from the library via my computer for the time being.

    Mainly we are still sheltering in place and will continue to do so.

    Diana

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  29. Pretty quiet for us here in CA Bay Area (Antioch). Cases of virus seem to be going up and down so we're still just hanging out. Suburbs and back yard pond and plenty of books means we aren't suffering here. We started to self-quarantine a couple of days before it became official - the first cruise ship passengers coming to Travis AFB the same day we were at the hospital there for appointments made this all seem pretty real. We have the luxury of an adult live-in granddaughter who goes out for the food foraging and anything else that can't be done from home, ordered online or done without, but even there except for a couple of trips to Costco it's mostly grocery pick-up. I trust us but not those who for some reason won't wear a mask or keep their distance. And just too many unknowns still.

    As for the hair - Hank, I'm sure you look great! But yeah, there is not going to be any DIY highlighting by me. I think I will need to give my stylist a huge bonus once we get back to "normal" since it's been awhile and my cut & color are still actually looking pretty good. Laughed (only to myself of course) that my sister, who has made gentle (?) fun of me for years for "always coloring" my hair and went gray years ago was the first one out for a haircut.

    Stay safe everyone.
    sally

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  30. Hello my fellow JRR's, I've been absent as Google wouldn't allow me to publish my posts, but I have been reading you all. Glad everyone is still well as are we. Oh, catchup. We are still keeping ourselves under pretty strict lockdown. No supermarkets yet, but we have done some curbside. One upside is that The Maine restaurant industry is going all out to serve us. Last weeks find was that the guys who own the premier chain in Portland - Hugo's, Eventide and Honeypaw, have opened an on line grocery. I collected on Friday, a part cooked duck breast (wish I could share my photos), a spatchcocked chicken which I will cook tonight and a couple of grocery items. Also my CSA has started up so lovely fresh veggies, thank you Julia. Yes my life seems to revolve around food; reading, planning, figuring out the shopping, cooking and eating Which brings me to some sadness. Apparently small farms and farmers, folks who are not Agri-business, which is most of Maine's farmers I guess, got NO money from the government under the various bills passed. We were 'hunting and gathering' up to our fav orchard, can't wait for their strawberries, for rhubarb. During our SD chat I learned that our friends were out of money, credit cards loaded, and had had to close a second business making wood boxes because they had $100,000's of $$$ outstanding in receivables and debtors were refusing to pay. Of course they can't afford a lawyer. I am heartbroken for them . Am trying to find them advice so all thoughts and ideas are welcome. Julia, the bees, all you had to do was talk to them, bees are huge gossips, and you could have added beekeeping to your menagerie. I have found the best easy shortbread recipe too. This balances redoing wills, banking changes, in fact money in general.

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  31. I walked Jack earlier today and noticed lots of honey bees in the flowering bushes. How great is that? We have lots of satsumas growing on our tree. This year will be a bumper crop if nothing untoward happens. And our banana tree has bananas growing on it for the first time ever! Restaurants are supposed to be 75% open now. I have eaten twice at places with outdoor seating. I send F in with my order. The personnel are masked but too many of the customers don't bother. Some places are really careful about their preparations and seatings; others not so much. I'm still avoiding going inside any eating place. Yesterday I ventured into a Sprouts for the first time in months; my granddaughter needed some stuff. It was okay. People were being careful. Our libraries haven't reopened per se, but online ordering and pickup started two weeks ago. Rather than make someone walk out to the parking lot I waited near the front door for the delivery. Several were doing the same, but all were masked and distancing. Baby steps. Our covid cases are on the rise again in Houston and statewide. I'm sure a lot of it is due to impatient people getting together over Memorial Day weekend, or participating in demonstrations. I understand the urge, but come on! This pandemic isn't done with just because we're sick of it! I do not wear a mask when I take walks. It is easy to keep ones distance in my neighborhood and people are being pretty polite vigilant about it. So detours into the street happen frequently and good naturedly.

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    1. Oops. I used some of my texting shorthand above. F is my husband Frank. My sister and I use initials in our text messages.

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  32. I'm glad the bees could be removed, Julia - safely for all parties, human and insect. :)

    Pennsylvania is slowly opening - I think the entire state is now yellow or green (where I live is green). I've been to church - actually, physically IN CHURCH - two weeks in a row. Gov. Wolf's orders specifically exempt churches/synagogues/mosques, but the Diocese of Pittsburgh has been very strict in maintaining appropriate health measures. Most of Pittsburgh has been very good, even during the recent George Floyd protests most of the protesters were masked. I don't think we have seen any spikes.

    Still ordering our groceries, but we're more likely to hit a store for a quick "Oh, we need that" - and all stores are orderly with markings on the floor, etc.

    The big thing in our house is getting The Boy ready for college in the fall. He's going to a school in Western New York (Cattaraugus County) that was lightly affected, but the school still decided to go virtual for orientation. Fingers crossed they are able to bring students back to campus for the fall.

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  33. Our north Texas area has never seen the two week decline suggested by the experts for re-opening, and for last five days Dallas County has reported over 300 new cases a day, more than any day since the beginning, and the ICU bed are filling up.

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  34. I've missed at least a week of this blog, and I'm glad to be checking in today. My family just went through my mother-in-law's funeral this past Saturday, and it was an interesting set-up for the COVID days of saying goodbye to your loved one, with masks and barrier between visitors and family. There was an area for the family to sit which was also inaccessible to visitors. Of course, there weren't a lot of visitors, as my 91 year old MIL had outlived most of her friends and family (besides children and grandchildren), and the virus kept people away (thank goodness). It was a small but lovely service, and I think my mother-in-law would have been very pleased. Only the family went to the cemetery, and only the family went to the house afterwards. Still, I worry just a bit and hope that there were no contacts that prove harmful. It's a strange time for us all now, with her estate to take care of, even though she left things and money well organized. The furniture and knick-knacks and paintings and all have been divided, even the plethora of towels, but the furniture will remain until we sell the house. It's going to be a summer of healing for us, and getting used to a new normal, without our matriarch. All of our parents are gone now, and we are that older generation. With the COVID and Memaw's death, new normal are the normal now.

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  35. I was doing better for a while, but since the "re-opening," it's like 95% of the people here believe Covid has miraculously disappeared. No more masks, no more social distancing. They look at me like I'm crazy for wearing my mask and going the other way if they get too close. The nonchalance has thrown me back into the same state of terror I was in back in March.

    But I am venturing out cautiously. I made it to Mystery Lovers Bookshop to sign stock for tomorrow's release. I went to a park with Hubby to walk the trails and take pictures of wildlife. Then I come home and hide. I'm trying to figure out how to tactfully respond "NO" to two family events. Part of me longs to go, but the other part knows there will be no masks (other than mine) and a lot of hugging. I'm not ready for that yet.

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    1. This is where my disdain for doing things I don't want to do comes in handy. Screw tact. Just tell them you aren't going because you don't want to be at gatherings where people aren't following the rules. If people get mad at you, that's their problem.

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  36. I'm doing well here in Sonoma County. Since I work in an essential business, I've been out, with proper coverings every day but quickly return home at the end of my day or shopping. Our bishop, like your's Julia, is keeping our parishes closed. The exception being the priest who can now be in the building for the ZoomSundayMorningPrayer and the necessary people to prep for the service. I've arranged the flowers three times since he started broadcasting from the church, the worst being for this past Sunday (I was embarrassed to post my pictures). The organist and choir director meet on Friday to pre-record the music. People are out more and more places have opened around here but I'm taking my time joining the world. Patiently (NOT) to find out if everything is in order so I can buy my house and move soon.

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  37. By the way,I like the brand name of the honey you were given.

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  38. We've moved to Stage 3 in Queensland, Australia: our State borders are still 'locked' but 100 people can attend a funeral, but only 20 people at a wake. I bought a new vacuum cleaner online - eschewing shops! All tar levels back at school - no social distancing there. Off to doctors tomorrow about non-Covid related matter but going to ask to be tested

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  39. We found a beehive inside my daughter's bedroom wall, years ago. She started noticing the occasional bee in her room and realized what was happening. They had an entrance/exit through a hole in the wood siding. We called the beekeepers, and they vacuumed the bees up with a special vacuum and took them away to start a hive elsewhere. So cool. We got to keep the honey, which was fabulous -- tangier than usual and with lots of lovely comb (and the occasional dead bee stuck in it).

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