Love in the Time of Corona, Part 6- Coronacaling Failed Social Distancing


This is my favorite time of day, twilight, the crepuscule. I hear neighborhood dogs in the distance. Don’t pet the friendly ones; you might get coronavirus. Don’t pet the mean ones, you might get bit.

When Josh sold his house and was looking for a home for one of his big fancy sofas, I accepted his offer and so now, the beautiful little love seat that I bought at the thrift store in Jasper for $40 has been replaced and the love seat is waiting for its next home on the porch of my apartment. I’ve really loved this little love seat. I got it so I could have a place to sit down in the living room back home at our home in Parrish after Mom and Dad had died. My brother Chad wanted the living room “suit” (as they used to call it) so I let him have it and he took it on to Auburn. I still can’t get over the fact that my Bama football playing brother ended up married into an orange-and-blue family and they live about a country mile from Jordan-Hare Stadium.

Someone must be playing their car stereo really loud a block or two away. At first I thought it was a marching band! You know it’s nothing for a parade to just pass by in New Orleans. I thought this might be one. And then I remembered.
So anyway, I once again demonstrated what a redneck I am by having indoor furniture on the porch. I’m sitting on it now, typing to you.

(a few minutes later)
Dammit! I just blew the social distancing thing! Miss Ann saw me sitting out here enjoying the breeze and yelled out. Her faint septuagenarian voice bounced across the courtyard on the late afternoon breeze, “Come here, baby!” And though I am stiff and sore from my workout earlier (one lap walk around the block) and though I am trying very hard to abide by the social distancing mandate, I obeyed her order (because that’s the way I was raised). I stop at ten paces at least. “I’m gonna stay back here Miss Ann because I was out in public yesterday buying milk so I’m a long way from the 14 days. I don’t feel sick or anything but you know you can be exposed and carry it for 14 days passing it all around!” She’s not listening. She’s busy rummaging through a couple of big boxes of food. “Look!” she snaps both me and my neighbor Malik to attention. He too is trying to keep a safe distance. “The church or the city or somebody give this food to the kids and they got too much. Don’t y’all want some?” I tell her, “I don’t have too much room in the fridge but if those are little cartons of milk, I’m on my last gallon and I drink a lot.” “Well come on and get ‘em!” “Just put them there on the rail and I’ll get them when I pass back by.” And I pretend that I had been on my way for a walk or something which is silly because she’d seen me there typing away on this porch before she called me over. I walk down the sidewalk thirty or so paces and then turn around to walk back. I look over and see that she’s gone inside so I go over to collect my booty. As soon as I get to the railing of her porch which is about six feet of the ground in case of flooding, Miss Ann reemerges from her house with little yellow Dollar Tree bags in her hand. She startles me and as quickly I realize that she’s a foot away and above me. “Here!” she says and hands me an empty bag into which she starts to through little square pint-size milks. “Don’t you want a couple of these microwave dinners? Here’s some snacks don’t you want them?!” “Yes ma’am thank you.”
I walk away toward my house thinking that I hope Miss Ann’s generosity and kindness didn’t just kill her. Or me.

My computer is waiting on the love seat for me to finish writing the blog. Out of consideration to the laptop, I go inside to drop off the cargo (should I wipe it all down with bleach water?) and give my hands a thorough washing before coming back to you.

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