IWSG April 1: Your World?

It’s the first Wednesday of the month and that means Insecure Writer’s Support Group (IWSG) is enjoying its monthly blog fest invented by Alex J. Cavanaugh. IWSG is a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds.

The awesome co-hosts for the April 1 posting of the IWSG are Diane Burton, JH Moncrieff, Anna @ Emaginette, Karen @ Reprobate Typewriter, Erika Beebe, and Lisa Buie-Collard!

QUESTION: How are things in your world?

MY ANSWER: “Attention the fleet, attention the fleet,” a male voice commands from the VHF radio. The vast majority of folks living on boats leave their VHF radio on 24-hours a day. This how we exchange information and call for help.

My world is a floating sailboat docked in a Mexican marina about 3 to 4 days drive south of the US/Mexico border. The aroma of fresh coffee fills the cabin and squawk of squabbling sea gulls fad into the back ground as I stare at CNN in an attempt to learn the latest about the CoronaVirus.

The announcer on our VHF grabbed my attention. The speaker goes on to say, “All ports in Mexico are closed.” Apparently, the local government finally realizes visitors spread the virus.

Good friends returned to their home country and rarely heard from. Even with social networking, I guess out of sight, out of mind. They’re busy with their own life, so easy to forget those they left behind. This is an annual ritual. This year was especially painful because I lowered my guard and formed a close friendship.

My cheerful spirit dived under the covers seeking to escape uncertainty. I pop back up and read stories about medical teams exposed to COVID-19 and their pleas for protective gear fall on deaf ears. Government so slow to react, both in Mexico and USA.

I’m less focused. I want my life back. I want to walk in the outside in sunshine. A local doctor advised: no walking outdoors. The US doctors advise time in the fresh air. Although, they caution social distancing is still required.

I screwed up my courage and decided to write about my world and fears. Maybe, exposure will stop them from twisting my dreams into nightmares.

I was trained to face facts and mentally focus on the desired result. This time, I struggle to retain my internal balance. A wise person said, “Focus on the how.” I’m trying.

Local news reports are in Spanish. The English translation says: tests must be ordered by a doctor and reserved for folks with active symptoms. Just because someone was exposed, they won’t get tested. I’m convinced without more testing the number infected is under reported. Similar to certain areas in the USA.

Rick and I are in the high-risk group. Rick lives with underlying medical conditions. Without exercise his body stiffens and less oxygen in his lungs results in less stamina and reduced immune system.

I recently posted blogs about clogged arteries in my heart and neck. As i recover, I need to build my endurance. Now days, I tend to sit on the couch and either tap the keys or click to read text messages.

Mexico’s slow to recommend social distancing and need for frequent hand washing. It’s hard to do as most live with extended families live under one roof.

Food handlers rarely wear masks. If they have one, it’s usually around their mouth or chin. I wonder if other food prep folks around the world are equally lax?

Water is a precious resource on most vessels. To conserve water, I shower at the marina. Yesterday, I realized putting my shower stuff on the bench was contaminating everything. I view every door handle and all touch points as potential virus cesspools.

I wash my hands constantly. Rubbing hand sanitizer is a regular ritual. Downside? My chronic eczema thanked my efforts by flaring up.

Refrigerators on a sailboat are notoriously small. I stocked up on pears and apples leaving no room for bagels. The last two developed enough mold to cure the CoronaVirus. If I only knew how to transform fuzzy green and gray stuff into a life-saving serum.

We decided to strap on our three-year old N95 masks and walk outside. We will practice social distance. Now I read these masks can expire? I’m told wearing my mask will help prevent the spread of the virus, but not protect me?

I’m back…I just peaked at the online news. Grim. Tearful pleas for help. States bidding against each other for masks, ventilators, etc. Why in heavens name, don’t they join together and make a collective bid? Then distribute the stuff among them? Why hasn’t FEMA taken over the supply chain and kept a lid on the prices?

Thousands of folks flock our sandy beaches during Semana santa (Easter holy week). Similar to Florida Spring Break, although this time it’s Puerto Vallarta, MX. Most with little regard to social distancing and washing hands.

Mexico is waking up. Local governors are ordering self-quarantine through the end of April; possibly continue into May or beyond. As of today, charter boats filled with tourist are prohibited from going whale watching in the bay.

No paychecks for hard working folks. I’m listening for a local group to announce a food drive. If nothing presents itself, I’ll send a few inquiries.

In a week or two, we will be forced to go to the grocery store. I’m doing my best to be prepared and smart. I’m focused on the how.

I’ve spilled my guts and feel better for it. I’m curious what changes we’ll write about in our April IWSG blog hop.

Before I close I must tell you what I’m grateful:

  • My husband and I enjoy each other’s company.
  • My daughter tested negative for the CoronaVirus.
  • A good friend and mentor share Joy through in regular contact.
  • The La Cruz Writer’s Group and monthly Zoom Web Conferences.
  • Insecure Writers Support Group for giving me the opportunity to share my insecurities with fellow writers.
  • I just learned how to clean my phone.
  • I can still taste and smell…so I’m free of Covid-19, right?
  • An English online news paper: Puerto Vallarta Daily News.
  • Excellent local medical information posted by Pam Thompson-Webb.
  • A fellow on the docks said to call if we needed anything.
  • A simple text exchange restored a close friendship.
  • My gratitude list is alive and growing.

Request: I’m seeking positive podcasts and calming medications. Any suggestions?


15 thoughts on “IWSG April 1: Your World?

  1. I thought my husband and I were doing very well, then I watched the news. A doctor of incredible credentials said everyone will get the virus, it’s just a matter of time. Wow, that took the wing out of my sails. He went on to say that keeping a safe distance is a must until a vaccine can be made available for everyone. And it’s not like I haven’t had severe flus before. Only they say this one is the worst yet. So–I’m going to watch limited amounts of the news, focus on the beauty of living, and do alternate day fasting so as to not need to get groceries as often. Honestly, most days I’m fine and far less panicked. We’ll get through this.

    1. Hi Again,
      I’ve been thinking about the good doctor’s prediction “…everyone will get the virus…” I sincerely hope by practicing self distancing and using sanitizers we can prove him wrong. I cautious about taking a virus that has been rushed to development. Our lives are more and more like a science fiction movie.

  2. Hi,
    First let me say that I am happy that you are in the IWSG. This is the place to let off steam when you have to. I remember those pictures of your surgeries and I m also very happy to hear that you and hubby are doing well. Do what you have to do but also take precautions when you need to.

    Second, I love that you made a thank you list. That is what brings us ,upward. When I awake in the morning, I look out my window, and I am thankful for the privilege of being able to turn over and view the sky. Gratitude does something inside of us and it strengthens us.

    Here in Germany, the people are panicking. We have been on total lockdown for the past two weeks. The government had indicated that it would be over before Easter but since Monday, they have extended the lockdown to the end of April or the first week in May, and are now thinking about issuing us a command to wear masks when we go outside to the grocery store or pharmacy. Everything here is closed and many people are getting worried.

    I am thankful that I am at home, that I have my office back again so I do what exercise I can by walking up and down my stairs and going outside to my mailbox and coming back in.
    Take care of yourself and do whatever you have to do but be safe.
    All the best.

    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G @ EverythingMustChange

    1. Hi Pat,
      I think it is the uncertainty that is stressing folks to the limit. Nice that neighbors brought you some sparkling water. So nice to be remembered. Thanks for stopping by and taking moment to chat.

    1. Hi Alex,
      We have fake news here, too. It was published they have 500 graves ready. Apparently, they won’t be burying folks, they will be cremated. I can only wonder where we’ll all be this time next month.
      So easy to stay at the computer and neglect the expercise. Gotta focus on the How (aka how to exercise).
      Thanks for stopping by and taking a moment to chat.

  3. My heart goes out to you and your husband as you try to cope being at high risk for the virus. My late husband would have been at super high risk due to his respiratory problems. It is a scary time. You’re not alone in struggling to stay positive.

    1. Hi Natalie,
      I wobble around from denial, fear, and cautious optimism. I never met your husband, but I have a hunch he’d like you live your life to the fullest. I wish you good health, peace, and security

  4. I’ve started checking the headlines once a day to be informed and then I’m out. Keeping busy keeps me from getting too freaked out. I read online that hundreds, some days thousands of children die every day from Malaria, which is absolutely awful awful and makes my worries feel like a walk in the park.

    Sorry about your friends. That’s been the worst part of the epidemic- the number of people who are willing to throw their fellow man under the bus out of fear. I hope you get to safety soon. Hugs.

    1. Dear Elizabeth,
      I’m so sorry it has taken so long for me to reply to your post. The constant reporting of death, loss, and poverty is overwhelming. The thousands that die from Malaria and hunger will continue after the Covid-17 headlines go away. My basic instinct is to encourage and inspire a smile. I’ve come to accept there is a power greater than my understanding. I’m n limbo, living in a surreal world, feeling a need to surrender, and believe good on some level will return. Yet, the suffering will continue. Both worlds seem to live in a parallel universes.
      Thank you for your visit and taking a moment to comment.

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