Covid 19 pandemic, Florida, Pandemic diary, Politics

May daze

May 2, 2023

Sunrise over ocean
I remember this (Photo by Rodrigo Burgos S. on

A place I didn’t expect to be this week: at the drugstore for a second round of updated Covid booster, which the CDC recommends if you’re over 65 or have a weakened immune system. Their guidance has at times been confusing, premature, tardy, or seriously wrong, but with seniors like me accounting for 90% of deaths, the latest advice appears to be on target.

When I got my first shot I never dreamed I’d need five more, or that in the spring of 2023 we’d still be arguing about whether the plague is over. At the moment, everyone from Dr. Fauci on down is looking back at what we got right and wrong, which was plenty in both categories. I’m no scientist or journalist (anymore) but through my pandemic diary, I tried to capture our hard times from one person’s ground-level view. Here’s a sample of my posts from the last three Mays.

  • May 13, 2020: “I’m still healthy, indoors, grateful, and paranoid. I’m not spending quite as much time lying awake, worrying about exactly what I touched and when I washed my hands. However, I deeply miss non-virtual contact, concerts, theaters, salad bars, dive bars, parks, haircuts, handshakes, barbecue, beach sunsets, and much more.”
  • May 15, 2021: “We’re not there yet, still have miles to go before we sleep, but the news that vaccinated people can go without masks in most places is the clearest signal so far that we’re heading toward the finish line.” (This is what I mean by premature and wrong. The Delta variant roared in a couple of months later and knocked us back to square one.)
  • May 18, 2022: “Booster number two is in. Unlike the other shots, this one brought no particular sense of relief, hope, or civic duty. Instead, I had short-lived but tangible side effects: a sudden lethargy and weariness in my bones, which sums up how I feel about the pandemic in general.”

I’m still weary, but a little normalcy might be the cure. My wife and I just booked our first trip to the beach since before this all began. Warm Gulf water, sunsets, and shrimp can be highly therapeutic and don’t cause sore arms. I hope y’all have found a similar place, whether in the physical world or the one inside your mind. Take care and stay safe.


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