Washington State’s Stay At Home order has been extended to May 4.
About 1/4 of the reported Covid-19 cases in the world are now from the United States (245k out of a million), with fatalities now approaching 6,000 in the USA, and more than 53,000 worldwide. (Information from the dashboard from the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University).
I ran out to the grocery store again on Saturday.
Hopefully, the time will come again in the foreseeable future, when I would not have to dodge the other shoppers, nor be in a rush, so as to minimize my time in the ‘dangerous’ public space of the store.
My two Easter bunnies from Lindt still have a day or so to go before they are done with their 72 hour quarantine .. but I will probably wash the foil wrappers with soap anyway, before I tear it open.
‘Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present.’—Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, Roman emperor from 161 to 180 and a Stoic philosopher
To help keep my sense of time and seasons intact, I drew up a little timeline of the 9 months that still stretch ahead of Seattle and the world in 2020.
Major sport events in the world have now been cancelled through July (including Wimbledon tennis at the famous ‘All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club’, and the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics).
Tulips were coveted in the late 1500s in Europe, for their saturated, intense petal color — that no other cultivated plant had at the time.
At the height of Tulip Mania in the Dutch Golden Age (February of 1637), tulip bulbs sold for some 10,000 guilders: enough money to buy a mansion on the Amsterdam Grand Canal.
The market for tulip bulbs collapsed soon after that.
The Financial Times publish these graphs of Covid-19 fatalities every day, here.
This graph shows that deaths in Italy, Spain and the United States are still increasing at a more rapid pace than they had in China, at a similar time (number of days after the 10th death in the country).
This graph shows that the New York State, the Catalonia region and the Madrid metro, could eventually pass Lombardia, Italy, as the worst affected subregion. Washington State and California seems to be doing relatively better than New York State. The higher rate in New York State could be related to the very dense population in NYC, and the heavy use of crowded public transportation there.
You don’t make the timeline. The virus makes the timeline. So you’ve got to respond in what you see happen. And if you keep seeing this acceleration, it doesn’t matter what you say. 1 week, 2 weeks, 3 weeks – you’ve got to go with what the situation on the ground is.
– Dr. Anthony Fauci, member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force
Below is a handy infographic from the Seattle Times, that shows what is allowed, and what is not, under the governor’s Stay-At-Home directive.
For the extra-careful (paranoid*?), there are YouTube videos that advise to wash or sterilize the outsides of packaged groceries, or to carefully dump out food from take-out containers onto clean dinner plates. Packages from Amazon or elsewhere, should be quarantined for 24 or 48 hours. Wear gloves when going into a store, to minimize direct touch with shopping carts & screens, and so on.
*The late Andy Grove from PC processor manufacturer Intel Corp., wrote a business book titled ‘Only The Paranoid Survive’.
The stock market was down today by ‘only’ – what? 4% or so, I think. I am not even looking anymore. Congress is still trying to pass a $2 trillion economic package. (That’s a 2 with 18 zeros; about 10% of the entire US Gross Domestic Product). As the New York Times says: Republicans insist that we should fight a plague with trickle-down economics and crony capitalism. Democrats, for some reason, don’t agree, and think we should focus on directly helping Americans in need.
There was Trump today, again at the podium with the daily press conference, his tedious self. He has done very little to stop or slow the pandemic. He now tries to claim, that it is going to be possible to resume business as usual in another week or so. (Unbelievable. And good luck with that). The press conference today went on so long, and so off the rails, that it was abandoned by the three national TV networks.
I ventured out of the house with my camera this afternoon, and found this American robin (Turdus migratorius).
The ‘late’ bird was looking to catch a worm, and sure enough! it found one in the dirt next to the sidewalk.
It has been beautiful outside this week, so I went for a few walks around the block a few times — but definitely avoiding people on the sidewalk. Yes, I’m steering clear of you. Don’t care if you are offended .. it’s good for both of us.
I find going to the grocery store harrowing*, and maybe I will get supplies for a whole month with my next trip.
Of course: I can always order from Amazon or even online, from the grocery store, as well.
*The last time I went, there was a woman with a persistent, bad cough in the store. So you absolutely had to come into the store? I thought.
I had three of the beautiful blue-feathered Steller’s jays (Cyanocitta stelleri) in my backyard today.
For a while, they sat quietly inside my laurel fence (the second photo), and then got out and flew away.
I made a late-night grocery run on Saturday (the Safeway store on 23rd Ave).
There was enough of every kind of food. I do try to make sure that I always have two or three weeks’ supplies of all my staples.
Some shoppers go completely overboard, or post pictures of empty shelves on social media. (Don’t do that. It just stirs up anxiety. Yes, the store may have run out of some items, but they are usually quick to restock the shelf).