Dispatches from Home

This time last week, I was home, gearing up for a month of community quarantine. The previous day, I had driven home with Mikko from Batangas just in time for the previously announced plan of placing Metro Manila on community quarantine. To be honest, I wasn’t worried about staying home as I’ve been working from home for the past two years.

It’s been a week and a day since. I know I have it better than most, with a roof over my head and a bed to sleep on every night. My brothers and I have been home all week with our driver and helper. I’ve only gone out once to get food supplies from the grocery within our complex. This was after attempting to get groceries delivered (most of the online services posted on social media are backed up a week already). I’m still waiting on a palengke delivery service that was supposed to come yesterday but asked if they could move it to today. We finally found eggs (from a nearby market) last night.

I’ve been trying to help in ways I know how like sharing relevant info for dissemination, donating even just a little to relevant causes (Kaya Natin! Movement for Good Governance and Ethical Leadership with the Office of the Vice President makes it easy to do this plus they email you updates on what they do with your donations), and checking on family and friends every so often.

I know it can be a bit overwhelming to look at your feed right now. Every minute there’s a headline detailing how many new confirmed cases there are, how many deaths, and all of the things the government is (or not) doing. It’s good to keep ourselves informed but I think it’s also important to see what it’s doing to you. Are you feeling panicked and afraid? Is it giving you peace of mind? Don’t be afraid to step back and take a breath. If it feels right to shut off the news and lose yourself in a few minutes of meditation, doodling on a piece of paper, or maybe even recording a silly dance on Tiktok, go ahead and do it. For anyone who has the option to stay home, please do. That’s one less person outside either contracting the disease or giving it to someone who’s immuno-compromised or has underlying conditions.

This week so far.

So in the interest of documenting the week that was, here’s a little rundown of what’s been happening at home.

I’ve been updating my highlights journal in the hope of catching up in real time. I finished my March 2019 spread and realized it has been a year since our US trip. It’s also my cousin’s first wedding anniversary today!

Painting my nails is an activity that forces me to sit down and focus. Shot a short video on how I did them with a nail stamper. Not really a priority, I know, but whatever keeps you calm.

Then, I scrounged up some leftover cake flour to make a chocolate pound cake. It’s down to a slice even if I burnt the top (should have covered it with foil). Since I’ve gone to the grocery already, I restocked on flour so I can bake again.

Was looking forward to getting back to dance class before the lock down, but it’s no excuse to not move. Restarted my NTC and I’ve done two workouts so far. Hopefully, I can do it again this coming week and try longer workouts.

Got curious about #dalgonacoffee after seeing some people on my feed post about it. My first try was too sweet, so I attempted it again with less coffee, sugar, and water then added more ice and milk. Texture is so creamy, I’ll probably make some again when we run out of coffee beans.

Reunited with my Kindle, too, and I’m in the middle of My Friend Anna. If you’ve never heard of it, it’s about this grifter who pretended to be a rich German heiress in New York City. Rachel DeLoache Williams, a former photo researcher for Vanity Fair, recounts her experience with Anna Delvey aka Anna Sorokin. They’re turning it into a Netflix series produced by Shonda Rimes starring Julia Garner as Anna and Anna Chlumsky as a journalist looking to expose Anna.

I’ve also been going on video calls with friends and I didn’t realize how helpful that would be. Most of my friends are moms, live in different parts of the world, and generally have a lot on their plate. This has somehow forced everyone to carve out a bit of time to sit down, put on silly AI filters and virtual backgrounds, and just catch up with each other. It’s reassuring to see everyone not bathed or in pambahay and then logging off to either go to bed or start prepping lunch. Honestly wouldn’t mind continuing this habit even after quarantine is over.

I’m currently listening to Forever 35’s special podcast ep about the coronavirus and intend to just slow down today before another work week starts. I’m pretty lucky that I still get to edit stuff from home (and will be paid) although other writing rackets have completely stopped (as all the things I write about are not really relevant right now). It’s not lost on me… the irrelevance of putting out travel articles at a time like this, but we’re working on stories that will be more relevant to our readers.

That said, I hope that you are well wherever you may be reading this from. If you know anyone who still needs to report to work right now, make sure to send them a message of encouragement or just a simple hello. Every little bit counts. Take care.

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