Saturday morning, I got the text: the person I’d spent a few hours with on Friday was suddenly part of a household with COVID. She kept me posted throughout the day. By late Saturday afternoon, she had a fever.
I took a home test immediately, remembering how, just a few months ago, I’d had to squint nervously at the enclosed direction sheet before I started. Not now, of course. These days, I consider myself a home test connoisseur (for the record, I prefer European tests).
Friday night, before I’d known any of this, I’d dreamed I’d caught it. (Foreshadowing I.) Who knows how many times I’ve dreamed that over the past two years? Maybe I dream it every night but only noticed this time because, suddenly, it seemed meaningful?
Saturday, I felt just fine, but what to do with this information? I had a book club meeting coming up on Monday; I had 200 pages left of the assigned book. I figured maybe it wasn’t such a bad idea to spend the weekend laying low and catching up.
The book, The Whale at the End of the World, was from a U.K. writer, written in 2015, and was about (Foreshadowing II) … a global flu pandemic that disrupts the supply chain. It was not The Road by any means (nobody was roasting babies). Honestly, it had feel-good movie written all over it (it culminates on Christmas) but it gave me flashbacks to March 2020 all the same. (For the record, people behave far better in this book than they have in reality. Anti-masking wasn’t predictable, though weird flu was.)
This morning, I woke up with a scratchy throat and runny nose. In Before Days, I would’ve put it down to allergies. This time, the line on the test strip was faint — but it was definitely there. I even called M in to confirm: Yep.
Two years ago today, FB tells me I was in Lisbon, our last unfettered, fancy-free travel. Now, I’m sequestered in the bedroom and very grateful to be vax’ed and boosted, and time marches on. I predict there very well could be swifts wheeling in the patch of sky I can see from the window by the time I’m free to broaden my horizons.