Our school is full-time in-person with 2-4 per classroom opting to Zoom to classes. We do have plans in place if anyone tests positive, for going all-distance while the school is disinfected and contact tracing is done. Library book returns are given a 7-day quarantine: librarians are being overly-cautious, but no one minds. The kids understand and have been so good about this.
We've already been back at church for 3 weeks - it's a small church (about 60 active members), and we've got the pews marked for social distancing, the pulpit encased on 3 sides in a plexiglass shield (we're jokingly calling it our "popemobile"), and have four music stands modified with curved plexiglass shields for the lay leader and up to three musicians/singers, and two laptops running Zoom (one is for improving audio pickup). The trend is about half in attendance (masks, hand sanitizer, signing in should contact tracing be needed), about half on Zoom, and the few who are still sequestering and are not "tech-savvy" for Zoom getting the sermon, bulletin, and music emailed to them.
Our choir director has started small-group distance-rehearsals (next week son and I will be ringing bells to accompany two sisters singing). She had been going crazy with not being able to do anything, as you can well imagine. She and her husband both have chronic medical conditions, so they are extremely careful about not getting exposed.
How has it been going, with your choir? Have you been able to do some kind of rehearsing together in some way?
Once the all-clear is given, I'm looking forward to eating out at a restaurant (we still don't trust low-ceiling enclosed spaces where everyone does have to remove their mask), going to a movie, and taking the trips we'd planned for last summer! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
we meet via Zoom every other week, do warm-ups, listen to stuff. This week we started working on two pieces with the goal of doing a virtual choir performance. But we are not gathering in person. We all know people from that choir in the Skagit Valley where so many people got sick (the director is a friend of mine) and we are not disposed to take any risks - and singing indoors is one of the riskiest things you can do.
I have suggested we could meet in a park, stand in a wide circle facing outwards, and sing that way . . . but the weather's turned now, so that's probably not going to happen.
My dad goes to church online and today they talked about continuing that practice even after people can come back to church - it's pretty convenient for some people to attend that way. I am a dreamer of words, of written words. -- Gaston Bachelard
Seeing my family & friends. I occasionally feel rotten about not finding a way to get home for some period of time during all of this, but I just haven't been able to justify it, considering the risks. It would be so great to have one big family gathering, with not a care in the world. Likewise for friends spread across the country.
I would also like to people watch at a very busy public place for a couple of hours - an airport terminal, a park, a shopping mall. All of those little moments where you're observing total strangers. Join us every weekend in the Hobbit movie forum for this week's CHOW (Chapter of the Week) discussion!
Most of those staying on Zoom in our congregation are elderly with health issues. Technology has, in this way, been a blessing to all of us, allowing us to continue in some way with group activities.
What would it have been like had this happened twenty years ago?
I hope you do get a chance to try the outward-singing circle idea! We did tests with singers standing behind the shields, they said they get "feedback" but not enough to affect them, and they're using mics so their voices come out over the speaker system. Our flautist has some kind of bag attached to the end of her flute, and a special covering over the mouthpiece.
And that Skagit Valley choir is constantly on our minds. People are desperate to sing and play - but are very aware of the dangers. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I've been folk dancing with the same group for almost 50 years, I met Uncle Baggins there 45 years ago. We've never missed more than a few weeks before. I tried dancing alone in my driveway but it wasn't the same.
I also want to join the church choir, something that was on my bucket list when I retired. We just made one of those video things where you sing your part, and it was nice but it wasn't the same.
Zoom church has actually been great. They make beautiful videos, and then in the "coffee hour" break us into groups oc about six where they give us a series of questions to discuss. A lot of people have said that when we get back together in person they want to keep the zoom discussions.
I also really look forward to getting together with family. We see our kids, outside with masks and distancing, but we're skipping Thankgiving and a wedding this year. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ GNU Terry Pratchett ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ "For DORA BAGGINS in memory of a LONG correspondence, with love from Bilbo; on a large wastebasket. Dora was Drogo's sister, and the eldest surviving female relative of Bilbo and Frodo; she was ninety-nine, and had written reams of good advice for more than half a century." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ "A Chance Meeting at Rivendell" and other stories
leleni at hotmail dot com ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
since I wanted to do this this year, but then the pandemic hit, so I had to put it off. In the meantime, I've been taking some introductory Geology courses online (just enrolled in another one from edX, which is a little cheaper, since you only have to pay for the certificate than the actual course).
I've never been a hugger, so I don't really miss that, but I would like to see my youngest cousin's new baby before she turns one (they named her Zoey Odina with her father's last name, since there's a good chance they'll get married one of these days). My aunt is ecstatic on becoming a grandma for the first time (which makes my grandma a great-grandma at the age of 95). I just wonder how her brother feels about becoming an uncle? "The Lord of the Rings is one of those things. If you like it, you do. If you don't, then you boo." - J.R.R. Tolkien
I have a rotating selection of about 12 masks. I wear 1 to 2 a day at work depending on how hot it gets in the pharmacy and whether I need to change halfway through the day. We never closed completely although we did go to curbside for a time. I've been giving vaccines since we opened back up with full kit on before I was vaccinated and double-masked after. We're now offering all 3 versions of the Covid vaccine plus the pediatric version plus regular and high dose flu shots plus pneumonia (2 kinds), shingles, and TDaP. Our small pharmacy did 171 vaccines in 8 hours. My record is 62 on my own as the only pharmacist covering all the rest of the duties.
I'm so ready to be done with the masks. They are needed and I will go on wearing them as long as I have patients who are at risk, but it would be so nice to see a smile at work again. With my hearing loss, it's been very difficult to hear through the masks and I've lost the ability to lip read.
So yeah, masks. Bonfire time! _
Heed WBA when building blanket forts. ITLs don't get enough FAS. :)
Where there's life there's hope, and need of vittles. ― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings