Because of the Coronavirus:

My friend Helen had to postpone a milestone birthday party this year, with friends  and family flying in from all over the country.  She’s going to be 100.

My friend Jeanne works for a doctor.  She was exposed to the virus at work.  When she tested negative, thank goodness, she went to Whole Foods to celebrate.  She bought  a loaf of sourdough bread, pepperoni pizza and a strawberry shortcake.

My friend Franny flew to visit her mother in Cleveland on March 8 for 10 days.  Her return flights have been cancelled twice.  Her most recent one is scheduled for April 30.  In the meantime they fight over how much to pay for toilet paper.

My friend Carol, a cancer survivor, has recently been alerted to coyotes in her neighborhood.  With gloves, mask, glasses and a hat, she puts her dog in her car and drives a mile away to walk him, twice a day.  He fights the mask.

I have two friends who are college art teachers.  Committed  and dedicated as they are, they are frantically learning how to put their classes on Zoom.  They are not happy with how they look on camera.

My friend Linda had 3 shifts of round the clock care for her mother with dementia.  One helper also works for an ER doctor.  She left to protect Linda’s mother.  Another also works for a convalescent facility.  She left.  Linda does have 1 helper left and 35 lbs. of rice.  

My friend Annie, also a cancer survivor, is taking both her usually in person tai chi and Zumba classes online.  She’s so happy to do it in her pajamas.

My friend Lois, an avid supporter of the arts, had cancellation notices from the opera, several theaters, museums, and lectures.  She doesn’t have a computer.  She reads and eats.

My beloved daughter cut up tee shirts, pants, curtains and bra straps to make masks.

Brave and stalwart, they carry on.  I miss these lovely women.  But I do see lunch again someday soon.

Thank you Sheila for your story! “Inside Our Time” digital series: