There are many strange and scary things about this pandemic. About this year more broadly, too.
But on the strange side, there’s the way the mundane, the ordinary, the unconscious, becomes at best unwieldy, and at worst nigh impossible.
A simple outing, today, planned well within the rules of Stage 4 lockdown. My bike wheel is busted, and my local repair shop is doing contactless repairs. Great. We also needed a couple of things from the supermarket. Cool.
Kind of weird to have to ‘clump’ errands together to minimise outings, but whatever.
The mildly irritating part came when, very shortly after dropping off the wheel, the bike shop calls to give me a quote for the repair and to let me know it’ll be ready in 30 or so minutes.
In and of itself, completely normal and, in fact, welcome, news, that the task I need done will be finished quickly and relatively cheaply.
But the timing throws everything off.
Once I’m done at the supermarket, I’ll have 20-30 minutes to spare. Not quite enough time to drop things at home and come back, and besides, that would make it two outings, which is pushing the rules a little.
In the end I settled on what I would’ve done in non-COVID times, which is to grab a coffee and wait for the wheel. But obviously I now do so in the car, semi-hiding, rather than in the cafe.
None of this is dangerous, or particularly egregious. Just an observation on how the most normal thing in the world is suddenly made into one mild stressor among many others.