…that’s what we call it now, since “running out for groceries” is way too tame. I don’t remember ever having Jonathan say, “Be careful” as I left to go food shopping before. I brought a bottle of hand sanitizer, which I used liberally, wiping down my cart handle in the parking lot before I began.
“Is that at least 60%?” asked a Hannaford employee, gathering carts.
I read the label – “65% alcohol,” I told her.
“Oh, good for you. A lot of ‘em are under 60%, and that doesn’t help.”
A sign at the door asked shoppers to maintain the 6-feet rule. I only saw one facemask, but shoppers looked serious, gazes cast downward, as though eye contact might spread the contagion. I worried about touching the mangoes and avocados to check for ripeness. The entire experience felt clandestine, like I was breaking rules to even be there, hoping to not get caught.
I felt like a pariah at the self-check-out, since a Hannaford employee hovered nearby, sanitizing solution in hand, poised to erase my filth.
All employees, though, were exceedingly friendly when asked anything. I thanked as many as I could.
Supplies procured. Hands re-sanitized. Back to the bunker.
My 60th year in 60,000 words
Day 210: 200 words, TOTAL = 34,513; 25,487 remaining
Robin Clifford Wood is a writer and writing teacher. She lives in central Maine with her husband and dogs, loves to be outdoors, and enjoys ever-expanding horizons through her grown children and their multi-species families.