Sunday, July 18, 2021
It’s quiet this morning. Charles and I are doing three loads of linens (towels and sheets). Sunday is our laundry day. We go early to the 24-hour laundry room in our building. I have a daydream about finding a dead baby in the dryer. I tell Charles. I’m always thinking things like this. I wouldn’t want to be a horror writer. Then I’d have to pursue the thoughts. I just ask Charles if we would call 911. He says we would.
We play elevator bingo. There are three elevators. Getting them in order is a trifecta, either ascending or descending. We’ve had those. Usually in the early mornings, one elevator doesn’t come at all, possibly still sleeping.
This morning as we locked our apartment door, we heard the sound of the elevator ding as it arrived. We couldn’t see whether anyone was waiting from our vantage point. The doors opened, there was light. I told Charles as we rode down on elevator 3 that ghosts ride the elevators at night because they get tired of taking the stairs.
Our apartment is at the end of the hall beside stairwell B. I like being close to an easy exit in case of trouble. I’ve always needed a quick getaway solution. I tell Charles that if we need to, we can pack our bags and go. Our last month’s rent is paid. Don’t collect too much stuff. Make it possible to leave at any point. That’s how I’ve always lived. I still remember packing my little suitcase when my family lived in a brick house in Wilfrid, Ontario. I hid with favourite little cars and my Raggedy Ann doll in the case. In front of the wrought iron and stone fence beside the tiger lilies.
Last week I spent a lot of time on Snapchat, showing my naked body to men. I love doing this. I’ve been thinking about meeting a few of the men I’ve been talking to, some since pre-pandemic times. I’m fully vaccinated, and I wouldn’t meet anyone who wasn’t.
I’m one of those folk who has managed to get a lot of writing and editing accomplished during the pandemic. I’m not bragging about it. The work has been a much-needed escape from anxiety and worry. And I have spent a lot of time in bed asleep or reading or wanking too.
I don’t think I’m ready to meet anyone for sex at this point. I thought I was, but I’m still nervous about any kind of activity that involves being around others. Since March 11, 2020, I have spent in person time only with Charles. I want to start slowly with friends in cafes and restaurants.
I’d also like to be more mindful of my time. I want to write, I want to work on the various projects that excite me, including all the stuff I do for AngelHousePress and Bywords.ca.
I get angry when people act as if the pandemic is over. It isn’t over. I don’t know if it will ever end as long as there are so many people in the world who remain unvaccinated, whether because the West continues to hoard vaccines or because of the anti-vax propaganda of ultra-right extremists. Mutations are developing. Variants might outpower the vaccines we’ve taken. California has started to mask up again after enthusiastically opening. The UK is seeing resurgence of the virus after reopening, thanks to the Delta variant. Countries like India and Venezuela, which have a low vaccination rate are doing badly with many deaths and increased hospitalization. It’s not over. Nowhere near.
This is a troubling time. We are witnessing the disastrous effects of climate change. Canadians can no longer ignore the genocide of Indigenous peoples. We Canadians are so nice. What that means is that we ignore what doesn’t seem nice. We don’t like conflict and confrontation. We pay lip service to real trauma. We believe the lies we’ve been told by governments and religiouns about the history of the land that our ancestors stole and the Indigenous populations they wiped out or abused in the name of Canada. We act smug when we talk about racism in the USA. As if we aren’t racists here.
Soon it will be time to pick up the towels and sheets and pillowcases from the dryers. We’ve had four elevator rides this morning: down on 3, up on 3, down on 3, up on 1. We have another two chances at bingo. If we get 2 down and 3 up, we’ll have an ascending trifecta. If we get another 3 or 1, we have a scratch game, but if we get 2 we’ll have an assorted trifecta. We don’t really have a name for that one. The game is a mix of bingo and poker maybe.
On CBC Radio’s Ontario Today show last Friday, the topic was falling. Omar Dabaghi-Pacheco, the acting host, spoke to former Olympian Perdita Felicien, a world-champion hurdler about her fall during the 2004 Olympics. One of the callers was a woman whose husband had died when she was 84. Shortly after he died, her leg had to be amputated. Several years later she talks about her life. How she just kept going. The Olympian talked about having fire in order to keep going, but the woman caller’s story resonated more with me. It isn’t about fire for me, it’s about just keeping going. That’s how I cope.