Start with the weird thing.
On Sunday, a friend and I went to a downtown Chicago street fair. It was fun, although I ended up buying too much stuff. As we were heading south on State Street to the Red Line to go home, an apparently friendly man - white curly hair, red and white Hawaiian shirt, wire-rimmed glasses, big smile - approached us from the other direction.
Quick note: I was wearing my "Black Lives Matter" t-shirt.
As I was getting ready to smile at him through my mask, he said, "Take a look at what your black friends have done to South State Street."
He walked by us; I turned and said the only thing I thought was reasonable. "I hope you have a good day." Answer assholery with kindness and heap coals of fire upon their head, I suppose.
"You too, you dumb bitch" he said, not stopping, and giving me the finger.
Wow. I don't think I've ever had that happen to me.
Oh, and South State Street is just fine.
In order to cross the border into Canada, Bob and I need to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test. Per Canadian regulations, it has to be one of several different types of test - most reasonably some variety of the PCR or NAAT type. It can't be an at-home test. It also has to be done within 72 hours of our flight.
Just one problem: all but one of the places I've checked that administers tests of the PCR type "typically provides results in 24-72 hours." See the problem here? And almost no one has appointments for the rapid tests of the NAAT type. My health provider is only providing rapid tests to people with COVID symptoms, apparently because there's a shortage of rapid tests.
After checking with them, and with two pharmacy chains, both of which had precious few available appointments at all currently, and none of which were allowing appointments to be made as far ahead as Sept. 27, when I need our tests done, I'm reluctantly going with CVS (reluctantly because they donated to Trump and to Texas anti-abortion pols) because, as of tomorrow, it will allow me to make appointments as far ahead as Sept. 27. They also have tests which, if not absolutely rapid, say they can get the results back to us in 48 hours. That's cutting it close, but you take what you can get.
Finally, the success (and the nostalgic sorrow):
I have successfully gotten the last of our boxes into our tiny storage cage, by virtue of buying good plastic storage bins into which I could consolidate several disintegrating paper boxes of my and Bob's papers from decades ago.
It was a hell of a trip down memory lane, though. Some of the papers were stuff I'd written for newspapers in Moncton, and possibly Charlottetown, back in the 70s. Some were letters from dear friends who have died - oh, how we used to write letters! (Just as Arcade Fire once sang.) I found some family genealogy, some letters from my mother, my grandmother, two of my great-aunts ... I found some notebook pages that I wrote during a period in my life when I was recovering from a mild psychotic break, and a note from Bob listing my symptoms (including "refusal to admit there was a problem".) In my apparently never ending desire to pick at decades-old scabs, I'm going to read them.
Still - all the boxes are now in our storage cage. Take that, ya condo board bastids!
And here: have this. You'll understand once you dip beneath the cut.
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