My Second Week at Home

“We have always held to the hope, the belief, the conviction, that there is a better life, a better world, beyond the horizon.”

Franklin D. Roosevelt

Social Distancing continues after a week back in the office.

Does anyone have a method for breathing through a mask that does not include fogging your glasses?  I came close to walking into a handicapped parking sign in the parking lot at work the other day. 

I walked into my Credit Union with a mask on my face to get some cash.  As if that was not strange enough, the teller was laser-focused on the barefaced guy with a cough behind me as being a potential threat.  The world has turned upside down.

There she blows!I have finished Moby-Dick!  The damn whale doesn’t bother showing up until chapter 133 of 136.  I have been on Sixth Fleet deployments that seemed shorter than my read of The Whale. My obsession with finishing the book was almost as maniacal as Ahab’s obsession to finish his nemesis.  I suspect that I’ve fared better than Ahab, whom my brain assigned the countenance of my first Commanding Officer on the USS Yellowstone in 1984. I may be in therapy for years.

Moving on to other tomes, I am juggling The Dubliners by James Joyce and The Splendid and the Vile by Erik Larson at the moment.  Once I am done with these two books, I will dive into the reading list that Auddie put together for me last Christmas in Savannah. When I get the “all clear” to travel again, I want to have knocked off a few selections from the list in case my favorite Ohio State Ph.D. candidate is also in town and decides to quiz me.

The beard is coming in.  As I have mentioned in a previous post, it is mostly gray with this weird dark line that seems to go from either side of my mustache down my neck. I have been told that I look “professorial,” distinguished, and 10 years older.  The hair on my head stops being gray at the point where the beard meets my hairline near my ears. This has led to speculation in the office that I color my hair.  Anyone who knows me well will tell you that I do not have the dedication or attention span to consistently (or inconsistently) color my hair. Let’s just say the gray is moving north and leave it at that.

Speaking of my hair, I am getting to the point where the natural wave in my hair is making an appearance, much to my annoyance.  It is at a weird stage that is somewhere between Bob’s Big Boy and Jimmy Neutron. Can the man bun be far behind? I could rock a mullet, perhaps! Courtney, if you are out there reading this, I will pay some serious cash for a cut.  Don’t make me look for a “Flowbee” on eBay (one was going for almost $400 today, go figure). My hair has not been this long since my college days in Scranton.

I have accomplished a few things.  My will, advanced medical directive, and a power of attorney are being finalized by a lawyer in Chesapeake.  There will be a masked signing event under a tent in a parking lot in Chesapeake next week.  Are you having experiences like this as well?

I have broken the code on the VDI that allows me to tap into my work account.  I can do unclassified email, training, financial records, and civilian appraisals from my front room.

I had an online meeting with my financial advisor.  I think she was imagining I would be breathing into a brown paper bag to cope with my account.  I am letting everything ride, I will only take a loss if I sell.  I find it is easier to watch Sara Bareilles & The Milk Carton Kids sing Someone Who Loves Me on YouTube than to take a look at my brokerage account balance online. (That is my current “thinking about Jeanne” tune, it is in heavy rotation.)

Plans to remodel the kitchen seem to be back on track.  Who knows when actual work can begin.  It is time to start painting rooms and consider some flooring changes upstairs.  Eventually, when the kitchen is done, there are a few bathrooms that need to come into the 21st century. 

While maintaining social distancing, I have gotten out to walk a few times.  Occasionally, I find something classic and beautiful. Last weekend along the Chesapeake and Albermarle Canal near the Great Bridge Bridge, I saw this old yacht in the Atlantic Yacht Basin.


Vintage yacht along the Chesapeake and Albermarle Canal

Being a creature of the ’80s (see the black and white earlier in this offering), I decided to put together a COVID-19 mixtape.   Here are my choices:

Cassette pencil 1

Get it?

  1. All Things Must Pass – George Harrison
  2. U Can’t Touch This – MC Hammer
  3. It’s The End Of The World As We Know It – REM
  4. Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You) – Kelly Clarkson
  5. Down With the Sickness – Disturbed
  6. Shake It Off – Taylor Swift
  7. Stockholm Syndrome – One Direction
  8. Night Fever – Bee Gees
  9. Misery – Maroon Five
  10. Toxic – Brittany Spears
  11. Fever – Peggy Lee

I have another side to finish.  Does anyone have ideas on tunes I should add to this collection?  The era or style of music doesn’t matter.  I just need to find things to do on those days when my Cherokee is whispering that I-95 South beckons!

I hope you are all doing well.   Be safe, be smart, find something to laugh at every day!




2 thoughts on “My Second Week at Home

  1. Glad you’re doing well, Michael! Let me know what you think of the last story in The Dubliners. My vote for your mix tape: Don’t Stand So Close to Me by The Police 🙂
    Your Stir Crazy Cousin, Sarah


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