My college roommate was from the east coast, which she thought was superior to Ohio. She waxed on about the Atlantic Ocean which I’d never seen. I got sick of her putting down my home and said Lake Erie was just like the ocean. It looks limitless from the shore and has waves. In fact, the lake is far better because it’s fresh water and doesn’t have human eating monsters in it. One summer she visited the lake and I visited the ocean. We both exclaimed, “You were so right!” We both kept sand from our visits. It was a good summer.
Grandchildren are visiting next door. They’ve been there long enough for me to both get used to them and not long enough for me to get used to their screeching. Why do kids have to scream so much? The girl has found more screechers to play with and has progressed from the perfectly adorable little child she used to be into an occasionally sullen near-teen. Before you know it, she’ll turn into one of the most evil people on the planet, an 8th grade girl. It’s too bad we can’t keep them 9 years old forever.
I rejoiced when the grandmas filled the car with coolers and towels for an obvious trip to the beach. I had a lovely, quiet day. Towards evening, I found I was looking forward to the kids coming back. The grandmas are boring neighbors. The only entertainment they provide is a reason to complain about their lack of proper suburban lawn care. The kids are like having a flock of butterflies flitting around, a pleasant diversion during my covid seclusion. Their car pulled in and the shrieking recommenced. I scratched out my butterfly comparison and thought about unoiled heavy machinery.
The weather has been extremely hot lately, yet it didn’t occur to me until now that I should go to the lake -- sand, sun, fun, and all that. I like swimming and the rocking of the waves. Then I thought, sand gets everywhere, I’m pigment impaired and will get sunburned, and it’s not like I can socialize while doing these things because of Covid-19. I argued with myself to go to the beach in the evening – but the bugs come out in the evening. I hate being a responsible adult. I want to be a shrieking butterfly.
I find that when society shut down, I shut down. I quit reading my daily horoscope. What’s the point if I’m not actually out in the world? Actually, I’m not sure there’s much of a point to the daily horoscope to begin with, but it was part of my daily routine. I don’t go to the store. I don’t even know why my attitude changed so much when my actual life didn’t really change other than seeing a friend seems to require a hazmat suit. I just feel like I’m waiting out the pestilence while my brain tells me that there isn’t a quick solution to any of this. In fact, everything is probably just going to get worse. I think I’m having a childish reaction. Make myself small and maybe it won’t see me. I think I must not be the only one responding this way but I don’t hear of anyone else talking about it. They complain about being stuck at home, but they don’t seem to share my feeling that time has stopped.
Ohio is in the medium range of US infection. Nobody I know has it, but the disease is around, or so they say. I don’t actually see evidence of it which makes this all feel surreal. The governor says everyone has to wear a mask when they’re out, and I hope people comply, though I’ve seen too many act like jerks about it. A lot of people also don’t seem to understand their nose has to be under the mask too. Oh well, I tell myself the nicer people stand a better chance of surviving.
Sand in a timer doesn’t seem very “sandy”, but it is what I’d painted just before I saw the word for the week. I think this is the last Barbie painting I’m going to do for a while though I’ve enjoyed painting them. You may notice some of the elements in this piece were in previous paintings. I was consolidating my thoughts from the other paintings.