I refer to March 16 as Day 1. It was the first day that I worked from home under my kind employer’s “strong encouragement” to all staff. I had done the grocery shopping and gone to yoga over the weekend.
We felt like we knew it was coming but it wasn’t really here yet.
We were told to plan for two weeks. Our techies were about five minutes ahead of the curve in that they had deployed laptops to all employees late last year. We had a demo on the VPN two weeks before, but we hadn’t done anything close to a “live conditions” test.
Day 1 went fine – Cheers to the techies. I had planned for a couple of projects and knocked them out right away.
Day 2 was the Illinois Primary, so I left the house to walk to my polling place. There was no line.
I went into the office on Day 4.
I had a pretty serious conference call to manage around mid-day and was presenting at a pretty big meeting that afternoon and was just more comfortable being at my own desk. There were four of us present that morning, out of..90ish? And I was the only one still there by mid-day.
The guy from Accounting stopped by before he left for a “really, how long is this going to go” with HR. I told him the truth – officially I don’t know any more than anyone else but if I were guessing I’d say we’d be out for as long as the federal government and they were scheduled to be working from home until mid-April. He agreed that made sense.
As he was walking out the door, I actually said, “See you on the other side.”
Sometime that week, my esthetician, Marilyn, called to say that she’d heard that the state was going to declare “shelter in place” so if I wanted to see her, I’d better move up my appointment.
I did that on Day 5. (Note: she has a private suite and is a stickler for disinfecting anyway. I was safer there than in the grocery store.) And we watched the governor’s address while she was waxing my legs.
By Day 6, I was doing virtual yoga with my regular studio. “How are you?” the instructor asked each person joining. I wasn’t ready for reflection. I’m still not ready for reflection. “My people aren’t sick and I’m getting paid, so I am fine.” That was considered a healthy attitude. And that was the day I dusted off my blog.
According to my Facebook posts, on Day 11 I had a Shamrock Shake for breakfast. (That was the day I ran supplies in to the city for my grandfather.) Day 12, “strong encouragement” to work from home became mandatory. Day 15, my pets were breaking into my Skype meetings. Day 16 we were told this would last until the end of April. And I actually pasted pieces onto a Jewel Monopoly board.
Day 17, I woke up to the news that Pete Sakas died. I had known that someone in his veterinary practice tested positive and they were closed to do the required cleaning. I hadn’t know he was ill. I’m not ready for this, either.