In the supermarket last week, the shelves where toilet paper should have been were completely empty. According to the ‘experts’ the reason for panic buying of this item has something to do with helping up feel safe. (?)
But shelves that usually held stacks of flour were also empty. What was causing that? Do people think they might start baking cakes once they are isolated? That doesn’t seem logical. I mean, if you are isolated from friends and family, there will be little need to bake a batch of scones for afternoon tea (for example). So why the hoarding baking ingredients?
But here: Apparently, we are quarantined. Those who fear they have been in contact with a COVID-10 must be self-isolated, while those (like us) who are simply (simply?) staying away from danger and avoiding contact with the virus are considered in quarantine.
Thus, we are quarantined.
We are taking this very seriously, as we all should.
We will not be going out anywhere near other people for however long it takes. Knowing this situation may last six months or more, it is a difficult decision – but a decision that had to be made, nevertheless.
And now I am trying to imagine - and plan for - the near future.
First, let’s consider eating – a most important and necessary daily occupation.
Beginning with BREAKFAST:
I usually start my day with a piece of fruit, maybe a banana, or an apple. Sometimes a pear.
So, here’s the first problem. I cannot go out every couple of days to buy fresh fruit. There are currently two bananas in the fruit bowl. On checking the fridge, I find 16 small apples. No pears or any other fruit.
As there are two of us in this house and we must share (of course) there is enough breakfast fruit for nine days. That’s all.
After eating a piece of fruit, I usually make a slice of toast, which I slather with butter and raspberry jam – always raspberry (I’m a creature of habit).
In the freezer there are two loaves of sliced wholemeal bread, so that could make toast for more than a few days.
There is ‘spreadable’ butter (2 containers) and a newish jar of raspberry jam. How long will those items last?
If they are not replaced, I will rely on the packs of butter put aside for baking (probably won’t do much of that…but, then again?) As for the jam replacement, there’s a half-used jar of Vegemite and about a centimetre of (elderly) peanut butter somewhere.
In the fridge, there’s an almost full bucket of honey and, in the pantry, a jar of golden syrup. So, if the bread holds out, there’s stuff to spread on the toast.
However, if the bread is all used and we can’t go out, the only thing to do is to make more! But I know there is no yeast in the pantry. Now, how does that recipe for sour dough bread go? You don’t need yeast for that – only flour and water (and patience). Note to self: search Google for sour dough recipe.
But I could always make pancakes to have in place of toast.
Perhaps there’s one small positive result of this isolation: We (well, I, anyway) might be forced to change otherwise set and boring ways.
So far, I have enough fruit and bread for just over a week. Yikes…this is not going to be easy!
The breakfast cup of tea is not too big a problem. I make a pot of tea which lasts nearly all day, just by pouring a small amount of tea (from the pot) into a mug and filling it with boiling water. So, a packet of tea goes a long way. (Usually!)
It has taken a page of writing to work out breakfast while in quarantine.
Next edition will be lunch and (maybe) dinner sorted. (or not).
This over-the-top planning is another way for me to try and make light of a situation that is becoming more dramatic - and scary - by the day.
I choose to comment on social issues and write creatively on a variety of subjects - for a variety of audiences.