Sunday, May 24, 2020

Day by Day During A Pandemic...

OK, after nearly 3 months of SIP (Stay In Place), my life at least has a certain flow each day.

I now regularly stay up later and then sleep more.... used to be sort of a "morning person."

In the evenings, I am either reading, doing binge viewing on Netflix, or watching A Late Show with Stephen Colbert, broadcast from his den instead of the Ed Sullivan Theater.

As the intro says "and now, from a safe distance..:" and the band name is pronounced Stay Home-ing instead of Stay Human.

Because ALL of us miss our barber and hairstylists, I appreciate one night when Colbert's hair "looked different."

He explained he was bored and parted it on the other side.  Next night, it was correct again.

Or, maybe I catch A Closer Look with Seth Meyers, beaming at us from his attic. He did mention the small door behind him but did not explain where it goes.

I get up after sleeping 8 hours - sometimes 9 or even 10 - to start another predictable day.

Today was a bit different as the virus mitigation has begun to be eased a little.
Oh, I'm of an age that I will wait a bit before joining large, unmasked and shoulder-to-shoulder crowds gathering ANYWHERE.

About every 10 days or so I pocket my stuff (mask and Purell) and head to the nearby grocery store. It still has a single entry and exit and monitors the 75 people allowed in the store at a time. Today, however, I saw they are NOT really enforcing wearing a mask and that's a disappointment.

As I was checking out, a person came right up behind me, slapping down items on the moving belt at the register. I turned and said "Hope I am not in your way," as I edged away.

She, wearing no mask, said "Oh, no, that's OK." I pushed my sanitized cart away and said "I was being sarcastic."

I headed to the other place I have been to once before during this serious time.. OLLIE's Discount store, to replenish my Keurig coffee pods and maybe get a rug for my new screened porch. They have great bulk pricing on the handy little plastic cups and various-size rugs also were discounted right now.

I headed up Murry Drive toward Hanahan High School and up ahead, I thought I saw a cluster of old political signs...

... but was pleasantly surprised to see maybe half a mile of Senior Yearbook photos of the Class of 2020!

What a great idea!

I slowed down (traffic is still very light) and took a few photos.

I even pulled over for this one.

I didn't actually count the portraits but the signage lasted at least a quarter-mile (I don't estimate distance too great either.)

I was happy to see there was this extraordinary recognition for an important moment in these young people's lives.

(Hmm, I wonder if there would be an actual printed book for this graduating class.)

I treasure mine from Bishop England...Class of 1957!

Oh, in case you wondered, here is how Colbert looks with his usual part on the "correct " side!

Thanks for stopping by.

You've brightened up my isolated day.

Be safe! Be smart. Physical separation rules!

You know the way this on the photos for more details and, if there is a link, click on that to learn more

Oh, I did get a new coffee supply and now have a 9 x 6 carpet on my screened porch. Good price, too.  Thanks "Ollie."

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Friday, May 22, 2020

HAIR today...and probably tomorrow!

 OK, the stay-at-home mitigation seems to be working.

Ask any barber or hairstylist and they will agree people are NOT hopping into a barber chair.

In my case, my usual "every 6 weeks" trim was last done in early February.

I am not complaining but it reminded me of Past Haircuts I Have Seen and captured with my camera.

The two fellows having lunch were in Vancouver and I looked up to see a perfect match of head and "hair."

I waited for them to NOT notice me and my camera then snapped a photo of the green-haired young man.

In Paris, I spotted this gentleman chatting with his young date.

My camera has a very nice telephoto lens so I was able to back off some distance and be less conspicuous when I caught his hair in windy flight.

I doubt he would have noticed me ..he had eyes only for his female lunch companion.

Here is another candid shot of an impossible - and improbable - hairstyle.

I like it when I don't have to worry about eye contact as I capture a "hairy" moment.

This was at the Charleston International Airport back when people were getting onto planes and flying off with no care in the world.

But, right now as we slowly come out from our hunker down in-place mode, we still want to maintain Personal distancing.

Sitting in a barber chair as someone who is closer than 6 feet away, starts to trim your unruly hair, is very personal and somewhat daunting!

Of course, we both would be wearing masks so that would be a new added element.

Hmmm, I will have to lower mine so he (or she) could trim around my ears.

I am tempted to use my own clippers, and give it a whack at doing it myself.

My present "look" does not approach the famed mug shot of Nick Nolte from years ago but it IS disturbing.

This also is an example of Bad Bed Head so I do try to brush it into a better look.

But, there is SO much hair.

Back when I was playing different roles in tv shows filming here, I asked wardrobe to dress me in a bow tie.

It was a different look and, I believe, shifted attention away from my hair.

But, my hairstyle was still neatly trimmed so it did not present a too shabby look.

OK, guess that's enough about me needing a haircut.

I once saw a hair salon named "Every 6 Weeks" with scissors and a comb on the sign. It'll be nice to get back to that timely routine!

Thanks for stopping by for a virtual visit during the pandemic. Stay safe and wear a mask when you are among others. It is for THEIR safety.

Click on the photos and link for more details. Especially Nick Nolte!

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Tuesday, May 12, 2020

It MAY be cut short......

 Headlines are grim in today's paper after our restaurants were allowed to have people seat and eat INSIDE after trying patio dining for a few days. 

All the details about restrictions of only being able to use 50% of the available space and arranging tables (and bar stools?) so diners (and drinkers) were 6-feet apart were clearly publicized.

BUT, people grumbled that there were not enough bar stools and it took too long to sanitize tables, etc. before and after.

People! We were NOW allowed to leave our homes after more than two months of lockdown!! 

Go with the flow...follow the rules or we will be sentenced to house arrest again!

In my case, I live alone and have a brand new screen porch to sit out and may have kids underfoot, a spouse who is tired of one-on-one face-time and those dang pets are getting on your nerves! 

Maybe you FINALLY realize right now, only you can give yourself a haircut!

My dad tried giving us haircuts when I was growing up.

Literally, while reading the instructions that came with the electric clippers.

Fortunately for me, he gave it up after experimenting on my younger brother. Whew..that was a close one.

Hey, maybe get yourself a screen porch!

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Sunday, May 03, 2020

A Project to DIY for....

Yes, Do It Yourself (DIY) projects are indeed booming here as the pandemic continues.

However, when you realize you may be in over your head, make sure you know someone who can put on a mask, wash their hands
and come over to help you reach your goals.

When the kitchen free-standing Island cabinet arrived, I was surprised it came in three boxes on my front porch. Hmmm, I had assumed "free shipping and a completed item" was what I had ordered.

Oh well, that is past history now. There it sits in my kitchen, a new countertop to place things on, two drawers, and storage that  I could move around as needed.

Several weeks into my stay-at-home isolation, a very large truck from Alabama carefully backed into my yard.

This was the delivery of my long-awaited shipment of a Screen Porch Kit I had bought.

I realized this was NOT going to be a simple snap together job with a few various large panels.

No,  we kept unloading many, many, long, narrow thick cardboard boxes of aluminum pieces that would have to be put together.

Did I mention they were heavy boxes?

I saw that even the screen door was in a small long box too. Damn, gotta put the door together too! I hoped it had hinges in a small box and maybe a door handle.

Two 13-foot long boxes held the extension for the roof of the screen porch. They were light though.

They would be cut into 6.5-foot x 4-foot pieces and attached to rafters in my existing roof of the house

Well, I understood now all those long pieces had to be cut to precise size and assembled into the thick corner post, the long slots screwed down along the edges of the deck and other parts that would have to be cut to fit together correctly.

I contacted a buddy who had helped me on some pretty major interiors jobs at my house and he said that Yes, he HAD built a screen porch before but it was made of lumber and he felt we could do it with metal.

The half of the deck where the screen porch would emerge was cleared and furniture and plants were moved to the other end.

It was time to start opening the boxes of various 16-foot long metal pieces.

But, first, we took down the yard lights and a ceiling fan that might be in the way.

Turned out, the 15-year old fan was NOT gonna be in the way but it will be replaced with a brand new one.

I ordered a Hunter brand with a slim flush design that hugged the ceiling better.

It only extends down 9.5 inches.

You don't want tall people to discover a whirling ceiling fan too late with embarrassing bad results.

Besides it was time to replace the solidly-performing, slightly rusted old one.

The plans and drawings were very precise.

Soon random pieces of metal were joined together and formed a channel on three sides of the floor of the deck.

Then firm thick corner posts were assembled and cross members and upright post began to form the shape of my anticipated screened-in area.

At my age, I don't do ladders anymore so my buddy was up and down it a lot.

 And he mentioned he sort of wished this whole thing was at ground level instead of walking up and down my steps.

He's a good guy though and worked steadily with me to get this thing sorted out!

Dang! There WAS a full-size complete screen door in one of the long, skinny boxes.

And a piece with the hinges attached.

And a door handle.

Oh, why was I so doubtful of this amazing screen porch-in-a-box kit!

We stepped back and it was gorgeous..even better than I had imagined it would be!

The last thing to do is to unfurl the thick roll of black screening and install it all around.

Then it'll be time to sit back, enjoy the view and the breeze from the new overhead fan.

I think I hear foiled mosquitoes buzzing outside!

Thanks for stopping by for a glass of sweet tea, sitting in the shade on my new screen porch. Oops, keep 6-feet apart until we get the All Clear.

Click on the photos for greater detail. I took some with a Fisheye lens so some lines may appear bowed. They aren't -  everything is straight and ship-shape!

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Saturday, May 02, 2020

Who's the prisoner here?

Seven weeks and counting. This stay-at-home mandate has gotten old.

My cat is confused about why I am HERE all the time. Oh, she likes that her Kibble bowl is always topped off and that the litter box is cleaned in a timely manner.

And now, she is hearing some new sounds outside on the deck as I am having a screen porch assembled, it bothers her and makes her even more cat curious. If that's possible.

She (Wallis) just turned 8 years old, orange. and has ALWAYS been an inside cat.

Oh, a few years ago, I left the door ajar for a moment and she bravely darted out onto the mysterious deck. AHA!

First to explore ...out on her own... free to roam... New Frontiers...the world was her oyster!

She took 4 or five steps, looked around and walked back inside and went to her Kibble bowl in the kitchen.

Oh, kitty, when I am told I can go outside and go freely anytime and anywhere I want, THAT will be a happy day! When the coronavius is mitigated and we can safely start to mingle with others again!

Yesterday I girded up to venture out to the bank.

I've been out to the nearby Food Lion three times for groceries since this all started so there ARE brief outings. Too brief and too constrained.

The bank lobby, of course, has been closed for quite a while so I joined the tail-end of the 9-car queue for the drive-up windows. Slowly the two rows moved forward and then I noticed there was a man standing right behind my car.

His mask was pulled down and he stood there working a crossword puzzle, pencil in hand so he might have been circling job ads in the paper.

With COVID-19 changing all the rules I guess walking up to the drive-in window has become a thing...even legal.

Maybe he just wanted to get out of the house, was taking a walk and decided to do some banking.

Heading home, I decided to swing by the Charleston International Airport (it was on my way) and see what the parking lots looked like during the pandemic.

 NOT completely empty...just mostly. Construction of the new (second) parking garage looked in full swing and I noticed the workers were NOT wearing masks.

I pulled up next to a security guard who was slowly pacing along his appointed rounds - nobody was double- or even single-parked to be told to "move along."

I lowered my window and said, "Your job has to be a lot easier these days, right?"

He looked over and agreed. "Planes are taking off now with only 7 or 8 people on board." I saw only one shuttle van parked at the curb in the taxi stand.

I drove away... then decided to swing around again and see if I could take a photo of actual passengers arriving to go board a plane. Hey, I might get lucky.

I did.

One lady bid farewell and got back in her car and her passenger crossed to the terminal. 

She did not bother to look left or right as he hefted her bag and headed inside.

I got home and my cat greeted me as if I had been gone for days! I wish!

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