Monday, 9:30 AM:Feeling sick at work. Told my supervisor. Got sent home with an admonition to get tested for COVID.

Monday: 11:00 AM: Got tested. Am seriously concerned about possible damage to the back of my eye and the bottom of my brain. Am told per CDC guidelines, I am to self-quarantine until I get results. Cannot leave the house until then. Could be up to three days.

Monday: 11:05 AM: Cried all the way home. Can’t ride my bike, can’t go to the gym, can’t do what I want. Try to take heart in the fact that there are only 70 more hours to go… Cry even more.

Monday: 11:15 AM: Break the news to Lovely Wife, who, as a teacher, was looking forward to some summer time to herself. As is her nature, she puts on a brave face, but if she swore, I have a feeling I’d get an earful.

Monday: 11:30 AM: Break the news to my road bike. Sobs shake the window panes. Cannot tell if the sobs are mine or the bike’s.

Monday: 11:35 AM: Decide for the sake of my sanity, it might be a good idea to keep a quarantine journal. Only 69 and a half hours left in quarantine.

Tick, tock, tick, tock…

Monday: 11:35 AM until bedtime: Watch TV while surfing my phone. Discover I still have the Angry Birds app. Play 146 games. Go to bed with that music in my head.

Tuesday: 3:45 AM: Awaken from a nightmare. An ear-worm song played in the background while a bird that was shot from a slingshot by a number of other birds demolished our house. Delete Angry Birds App. Stupid game.

Tuesday: 11:00 AM: Only 48 more hours.

Tuesday: 11:05 AM: I remember the quarantine will be at least two weeks if I test positive.

Tuesday: 11:06 AM: Sobs rattle the windows. (It ain’t the bike.)

Tuesday: 11:15 AM: Gather my composure. 47 hours and 45 minutes left in quarantine. (My quarantine glass is half full.)

Tuesday: 11:30 AM: Writing might help my state of mind. Rack my brain for ideas. Can only muster, “All work and no play makes Craig a dull boy.”

(Lovely Wife shudders.) (That’s a “Shining” joke…)

Only 47 and a half hours to go. (Optimism: That’s a good sign.)

Wednesday: 3:37 AM:I dream that Lovely Wife is trying to get my attention. Awake to find her at the foot of the bed, in excruciating pain. She had a confrontation with the coffee table. She lost. Her right pinkie toe is broken.

Wednesday: All morning:  Here’s a challenge for you:  Try to get your Lovely Wife to medical care when you’re quarantined. I dare you. Try it.

Wednesday: 12:00 PM. Finally succeed. She’s given a funky shoe and crutches.

Wednesday: 1:00 PM: Draft an email to my elected representatives, strongly suggesting they pass legislation banning Lovely Wife from being near a pair of crutches.  

Wednesday: 1:15 PM: Realize last joke isn’t funny. Leave it in anyway.

Wednesday 1:16 PM to bedtime: Only one more day, only one more day…

Thursday 11:30 AM: Call to see if my results are in. They aren’t. That dark cloud you see over Sunset Dr. is the string of profanities I expelled when I got the news. Don’t worry. It (probably) isn’t toxic.

Thursday: 11:45 AM: Again decide writing might do me good. Sit at my computer, pining for the good old days. Does the sun still shine outside? Do people still hope? Is there still ice cream?

“All work and no play makes Craig a dull boy…”

(Lovely Wife shudders.) (Again, a “Shining” joke.)

Thursday: 12:02 PM: As column deadline approaches, I come to the terrible realization this week’s column won’t have a happy ending. (Does it ever, Craig?)

Sobs rattle the windows. (It ain’t the bike?)

Do people still hope? Is there still ice cream?

Poor lovely wife. A broken toe and a trainload of melodrama…

Tick, tock, tick, tock…

Craig Carter is an Ontario resident and can be reached in care of The Argus Observer, 1160 S.W. Fourth St., Ontario, OR 97914. The views and opinions expressed in this column do not necessarily represent those of the Argus Observer.

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