Notes on the Grippe

Being an accounting of the recent and continuing pandemic and its various circumstances, from the perspective of an inhabitant of the regions lately called the Lost Quarter. Dates unknown.

Day Three Hundred and Five

The sameness of these days. They have ceased to be strange, or to have any kind of novelty whatsoever. The weather conspires to reinforce this. Winter, thus far, has been mild. Pleasant. Each day is roughly the same temperature, a few degrees above or below freezing, with a few hours of glimmering sunshine in the morning, followed by clouds moving in later in the day.

Any other year I would feel ecstatic at this turn of events. Now I long for something to change the fabric of these days. A cold snap, some snow, or anything really. It is an uneasy feeling, wishing for bad weather and interesting times. There is never a lack of those, in general, and I’m sure someday I will look back on these quiet days with something like longing.

Part of it is the contrast with what is going on elsewhere. The failed insurrection down south, and all the ramifications that have come from it, continue to play out. It is hard to escape talk of it online or elsewhere. There are stories elsewhere of desperate times in the battle against the grippe reborn, of hospitals overwhelmed with the afflicted, of doctors and nurses at their breaking points. We watch all this occurring – all we can do is watch, helpless to effect the current of events in any way, knowing that we shall be living in the consequences of what happens – and wait for days when we might be able to do something. 

Yesterday I went out for a walk in the morning and the lovely morning was disturbed by a sudden gusting of wind. Trees bent, branches rattling, and dirt and detritus were cast about under the tumult. I was walking north when the wind hit from the west and it nearly knocked me off my feet. The wind died as suddenly as it came and I walked on thinking it was past, but it returned again with its same terrible force, carrying with it sleet and freezing rain. Hard pellets lashed my face, stinging my cheeks, and I was soon left soaked.

I walked on through it, letting the rain soak me, the sleet strike me, not bothering to hurry home or take shelter. The sidewalks were quickly treacherous. I did not feel annoyed that I had been caught out in this maelstrom, instead I felt exultant. Here was something different to struggle through and endure, and I knew that eventually it would pass, as it did before I reached home, that it wouldn’t linger on without end.

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