Operation Oysterhood: Day Seventy-Six

OYSTERHOOD is reclusiveness or solitude, or an overwhelming desire to stay at home.

— @HaggardHawks


It’s late. Another dark, stormy night ahead. When the thunder came, Salieri hid under the bed. The trees have suffered outside, but I haven’t detected any roof leaks – yet.


Before bed last night, I did move the coffee machine to the bedroom. And this morning, I made coffee without leaving the room, showered, washed my hair, put on my PJs again, made a fire and returned to my bed to start on the day’s work. Some of it admin, some of it the sheer pleasure of working with a text that tells a remarkable story. A story of transcending and of kindness. Part of the pleasure of working on it was the help I received from my wonderful friend and Afrikaans translator, Erika. All day long, I sent her Afrikaans passages, sentences and phrases from the predominantly English text via Twitter’s DMs and she kindly responded with corrections. As we all know, social media can be anything but social, but sometimes they can deliver help, a connection, kindness, smiles, solace, surprises and other beautiful gifts. And they allow us to stay in touch even during the age of isolation and physical distancing.


Home office.

After lunch I decided to get out of bed! I made the bed, though, only in the evening when Salieri, freaked out by thunder, abandoned ship and disappeared underneath. She is still not back, so who knows what the storms might bring in the night. Cats know stuff.

It is a great comfort to be able to work next to a fireplace, especially on a day like today. I ate my dinner here, too. The lemon meringue pie disappeared when I was still in bed… No comment.

It seems that we can’t rely on test and infection numbers much at the moment, although there is no doubt that they are rising, but the numbers of Covid-19 related deaths are much more difficult to contemplate. Every day they are moving upward. As predicted. But…

I can’t help wishing for miracles.

Joanne Harris posted this picture of a cat today on Twitter: “Safety bubble.”

Safety bubble

Like I said, cats know stuff. The world out there is harsh, not only because of the pandemic.

As the wave of infections rises to its peak, I am considering stocking up for another three weeks of sheltering in place. To leave the house only to walk. I know this thing will most probably not kill me, but I don’t want any further permanent damage to my health, and no one can guarantee that I would get through a Covid-19 infection and be totally okay again. The risk, the consequences, are frightening. And I try to imagine even a relatively mild infection while living alone and having to take care of myself while sick – no, thank you. Even when you have a silly cold, after three days it is difficult to imagine what it feels like to be healthy again. And Covid-19 is not being described as a silly cold.

I don’t want it.

What I want is a whispering fire and kindness.

My love made me aware of a video by Kimberly Latrice Jones which Trevor Noah posted on his Twitter account a few days ago. I encourage all to watch it. I wept by the end of it.

Be kind to yourself. Be kind to others. Stay at home.

“Physical distancing remains one of the key strategies to curb this pandemic.”


I am tired.

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