To Shop or Not to Shop – That is the Question . . .

Okay, as a result of the Corona virus crisis, we’re all “quarantined,” officially or unofficially; either way you look at it, the result is the same.  We’re pretty much confined to house arrest.  I still take my daily walk of between two and two-and-a-half-miles, but, other than that, it’s home sweet home.  Ugh!

Early on, when this crisis began, we stocked up on food staples, with the notable exception of toilet paper.  Then, for more than a week, following the outbreak, I would make a daily foray to the local supermarkets in search of that previously unappreciated commodity.  No luck.  Empty shelves were the norm (and, as far as I know, still are).  Not to worry.  We’ve got about seven rolls of the precious paper remaining, enough for about a month.  After that, heaven knows what we’ll do.  I’ll worry about it then.

But now, our food stores are running low, and it’s time to replenish them.  Each day, I add an item or two to the list.  When the list is long enough, I’ll have to venture forth in hopes of finding what I need.  But there’s a problem: How exactly should I do it?  Should I first try Lidl, the supermarket with the lowest prices, but which is farthest from my home?  Normally, that’s what I’d do.  Then, I’d work my way back home, stopping at Walmart, Food Lion, and Harris Teeter, in that order, until I have obtained everything on my list.

“I don’t want you to go!” Becky says, with every vein in her neck sticking out.  “It’s too dangerous.”  She’s referring, of course, to the danger posed by the unseen enemy, COVID-19, or “The Virus.”  I appreciate her concern, I really do.  But we need the food.  There’s no way on God’s green Earth that I’m waiting until we’ve completely exhausted our food supply before I go shopping.  But visiting all those stores?  That’s kind of risky.

Is there a compromise?   I suppose so.  I can just visit one store (most likely Food Lion), and hope I can get most of what we need, while minimizing my exposure.  So, I guess that’s what I’ll do.  Don’t worry, I’ll don a pair of rubber gloves, stay the requisite six feet away from other humans, and go through the mandatory “wash everything” protocol upon my return.  It’s scary.  But I trust that God will protect me, and I’ll just do it.

There is one bright spot amid all this darkness.  As a result of our mutual confinement to quarters, we’re actually seeing more of our family.  We are using FaceTime more than we ever have before.  We get to see all of our kids, and even see our grandchildren at breakfast and sometimes at dinner.  Those visits, coupled with the time we actually get to see our children as a result, have become a staple of our daily lives.  So, maybe the crisis isn’t so bad after all.  Let’s just pray that it ends soon.  I’m hungry . . . and we need toilet paper.

In the meantime, I urge you all to fire up those computers, and get busy with your own family “visits,” even if they are only virtual.  It beats the alternative.

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