March 13th I was in the stands watching the Leander High Baseball team take on Cedar Park. It was a great night for a game. Big crowd, beautiful early spring weather, the guys were playing great. Then I heard something really unusual. One of the dads who worked at HEB grocery store was talking about people panicking and buying all of the toilet paper in the store, Was I hearing the right? I turned around and said, "Did you say toilet paper?"....
And so it began.
March 14th we had an outdoor gig at Hayes City Store. It was their anniversary celebration and we were playing for a large crowd. That morning we heard all kinds of information about "social distancing"... not hugging.. staying 6 feet apart. We saw a lot of friends that eve.. and it was very hard not to hug them. We stood pretty close to each other though... maybe for comfort, maybe in disbelief.
That day everything changed. Watching the news it was clear that life, as we knew it... would be very different for awhile.
We stayed home. We washed our hands. We wore our masks. We cancelled everything.. and everything was cancelled for us. After a while, we were in a groove. Peaceful walks, online concerts, online everything, really. Toilet paper was back on the shelves.. along with bleach, paper towels and anything "clean" related. Although, this time there was a 2 item limit.
Then, Texas opened up.
16 weeks after the shock and shutdown, we are seeing a 370% increase in Covid cases here in Texas. Parks are closed again for this holiday weekend...and perhaps indefinitely. Bars are closed... Parks and bars. Fun and Fun. Fun is cancelled for awhile. Boat ramps too. Museums, tennis courts, Stay home. Do not pass go.. do not collect any fireworks.
Then a Sahara Dust blew through. Perhaps it blew away the murder hornets that were hanging around a month ago.
Where to go when the world around you is closing in? Church? I am not sure if we can go to church yet. The gym? Kind of sketchy. A good walk? Well, the Sarah Dust makes it unsafe to exercise outside. I know.. we'll go to the beer garden down the street and hear some live music. That will make us feel better. Oh wait..
I guess we need to stay inside. I mean Real Inside. Like to our very hearts and souls. Meditate more. Pray more. Honor reading and writing and creating more. Garden more. 16 weeks wasn't enough time apparently, so here is more...time.
And when we are in the clear, if that time ever comes, we will meet at the park... or the bar... and awkwardly hug.