The umbrella that I always keep in the trunk of the car and use maybe twice a year isn’t there. And so starts the story, deep in Krawttown in the drizzle and in the autumn wind. I have my cell phone so I can stream into it or into the wind since there is no one on the street. No one ever seems to be on the street anymore. Except for me. I’m on the street more now than ever. The gym I quit fortuitously two weeks before lockdown in March. I didn’t know we were going to have a lockdown. I was hardly paying attention to Covid then. Then it was a problem in China and I was fascinated that they would and could close down a whole city. How naive I was. How little did I know. How underprepared it turns out we all were.
I’m hardly paying attention to Covid now. Now because it is just part of daily life. Going out? Take a mask. Outside is good. Inside is bad, except your own home, which is good. I need passport photos. Another change. Taiwan usually gives me 90-days upon entry. This time I have to apply. Visiting family. No problem. They will let me in. Truth is I’m not sure if I’m going or not, but I want to be ready to go. I’m not doing anything thing here so I’d be much happier there, there in the mid-20C weather.
I sit on the stool, take off my mask and look at the camera.
“Come back in 20 minutes”, she says.
Normally now, I’d go to Second Look Books and browse for a couple of paperbacks. I’d grab a coffee and sit in the window watching the welfare bums and street urchin. I’d go to city hall and look at the art in the Rotunda. But instead I go back to the car and listen to a podcast…the rest of this story is so pedestrian that it’s lost graciously to history.