Two weeks ago today, President Macron urged people to voluntarily self-isolate, do the obvious: don’t ‘bises’, stay 2 meters away from each other, cough into your elbow, etc. Since then, he has had to resort to draconian measures to get us to pay attention. At last count, France has 29,155 cases of Covid-19 and 1,696 deaths. We have been given a new ‘passport’ to carry with us, replacing the one from two weeks ago. This one asks us to put the time and date when we leave our apartment and adds two more reasons to leave. However, the old is still good, until further notice, as long as you write in the date and time and the reason if it is not on the original.
The weather has mostly been lovely although it has turned cold again. I think that will change this coming week. The papers show us eerily beautiful photos of Paris completely empty of people and cars. The police that have been stopping people and checking their ‘passports’ are backing off as a couple of them have died from the virus. Five doctors have died from the virus. Macron has brought in the military to help out the overworked protectors of the people.
I, and I assume most of you, have been getting e-mails from every service and store that has your e-mail address telling you that they have your best interest at heart, where to get more information on-line and how much they care about you. It has caused me to actually think that this is the perfect time to reflect on all our relationships. Are we keeping connected to the most important ones? Are we reaching out to someone over 70 that you care about just to see how they are? What would we change, if anything, in our relationships to these stores and services? Have your priorities changed in any way due to staying in your home? Like the Count in A Gentleman in Moscow (Amor Towles), do you think that “the endeavors that most modern men saw as urgent (such as appointments with bankers and the catching of trains), probably could have waited, while those they deemed frivilous (such as cups of tea and friendly chats)..deserved their immediate attention.” p. 391. These are life-changing times and reflection is a pursuit worth having a cup of tea with.
In other areas of life, yesterday was Opening Day of Baseball in the USA. The fields of green were empty and baseball fans around the world mourned. Rogers Hornsby, when asked how he spends the winter said,“People ask me what I do in winter when there’s no baseball, I’ll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.” Dan Barry wrote a lovely imaginative piece about yesterday’s Opening Day game: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/26/sports/baseball/baseball-opening-day-coronavirus.html My friend, Georgia, told me that her father once said “There are two seasons in the year. Baseball season and the void.” When I lived in California, I felt that way. Starting from the day after the end of the World Series, I would start counting down the days to Spring Training. Most teams had a Fanfest sometime in January and thousands of fans would pour into stadiums around America. When I moved to Paris, friends asked me ‘how can you leave your beloved Oakland Athletics behind?” I don’t have an answer for that. I subscribe to MLB.com audio and listen to all the games I can. The A’s, being on the West Coast, are the hardest. Only matinee games on the East Coast came on at a time I could actually listen. Now there will be nothing, but I still have my subscription. Just in case……
In another part of the sports section, I read that hospital masks are being sewn out of baseball uniforms. Soon health care professional will be sporting the the stripes of the New York Yankees and the Philadelphia Phillies.
I wish you all the best of weekends in our new, organically evolving times. This too shall pass.
3 thoughts on “Day 14 of “le confinement””
Bonsoir, Sara. Yes, this too, will pass. One fine day we will all laugh about the empty toilet paper and tissue-shelves.
Hi Sara, It’s Friday and I want to check in with you. Gosh we are in the thick of it are we not? Paris is stricter than here but we are hopefully doing our part well. The real estate market has nearly come to a halt. There was a bit of momentum that continued after SIP on 3.17 but that is nearly exhausted. Since Real Estate is a non-essential business there is a mandate against open houses, broker tours and any and all showings. Sorry if I am repeating myself. A few new listings have come on the market available by virtual tour only, no visits. When SIP is lifted there will be pent up demand and a visceral need on the buyers part to have their own shelter. This is my opinion. Talking heads predict a softening of prices but who really knows. The demand for this area was so high before 3.17 SIP I think it will still be there but maybe in a less robust way. A Gentleman in Moscow is a lovely read. Thursday night we had a driveway cocktail visit with a few neighbors. Maybe you read about in GANC. I’ll check in next week. Till then, Nancy
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Salut mon ami ~ This is certainly a time for reflection. And for reaching out. We were so worried that cellphones and other “screens” would blot our desire for human connection. Apparently not, given the social media posts I see from friends who can’t wait to “get out” and meet up in person. My university students, now doing our entire business communication class online, tell me they are grateful that I still ask for live video time with them versus some professors who have simply moved everything to online documents and emails. We are, after all, pack animals. We need the pack. Thanks for continuing to write, Sara. And I’ll be putting A Gentleman in Moscow on my reading list (although it wasn’t in need of additions at this time!). ~ Lisa