Check-in #5

Happy Sunday! It’s June 7th, for those who want to be able to write the accurate date tomorrow. Hahaha, is anyone still writing dates anywhere? Firstly, outlook / email programs do it for you. Secondly, people are not writing letters anymore anyways, are they?

Well, in case you are one of the few that is either taking notes including the actual date (like myself) or writing a letter, you are welcome! Careful though, the 7th is today, so tomorrow is the 8th. And a Monday, also.

I know it won’t matter much to you, as likely by noon you will have forgotten what day of the week it is already. And I will not remember either, as I am on PTO the entire week. But fret not, I do have a solution for this problem. May I present – week day underwear!

Found at Gap factory under

Now the only caveat is, you either need to not only be a skinny but also a super tiny girl or you have to have children (a girl to be precise) to wear them for you. Of course you can google “week day underwear” and find them for ladies and gents as well. Even as “quarantine underwear”. You are welcome!

Are you realizing how much has changed in our work lives? First, there is the couch-office and working from home part. Our colleagues are looking quite differently these days, too. Mine is super cute! Yes, of course I am talking about my husband!

We used to start our emails with “Hi” or “Hello” or even “Hey”. Once in a while we might have added a “I hope this note finds you doing well”, but as a formality not out of any serious concern. Nowadays the first two lines definitely include “I hope you and your family are safe and well” or something similar. And we actually mean it. And that’s just email.

Just a warning, not muting your mic or forgetting your camera is on, is the new accidental “reply all”. Also, and I know this might be TMI for some, but you need to know, hosts of Zoom, Webex, Microsoft Teams etc. meetings can “unmute all”. If you have a super long meeting and had a lot of water or soda or coffee or all of the above, better excuse yourself and take off that headset and mic. Seriously, you’ve been warned.

I won’t have to worry about any of this for the next 5 working days. Because they won’t be working days for me. After a rather short debate with myself, I decided to go back to my original plans of taking the entire week off. I am excited, even though we do not really have plans. But then, we do have a puppy, so who needs plans?

Sam will find a way to keep us busy. Between playtime, cooking his sweet potatoes and ground turkey every 3-4 days and making sure his ears are not hurting and his skin is not itchy, I might even find some time to read a book. At least that’s what I am telling myself. We shall see! Well, I will see and you might get a glimpse in my next check-in.

There is serious cabin fever going on in our house. And it actually has a double meaning. First, we are bored of our house and not having traveled and seen something else than our neighborhood and immediate area for a long time. So actually real “cabin fever”. But there is another kind, too. Hmm?

While we do not really live in a cabin, cabins actually exist. And if such cabin is located in the mountains, has a fire place, a stunning mountain view, nature and hiking trails near by, it’s a vacation destination. The closest mountains for us will be the Great Smoky Mountains area, stretched across Tennessee, Georgia and North Carolina.

And that’s where we are planning to go. To see the fall foliage in the mountains, have cold enough weather to actually enjoy a hike and the warming up by the fire place afterwards. Oh and a hot tub. There will be a hot tub as well. And maybe, just maybe, hot chocolate and fresh apple pie, too. If I can make that work, points wise (WW). Of course.

I hope we can settle on the cabin of choice no later than tomorrow. It’s always good to have something to look forward too. And mountains and hiking trails are usually not crowded. Perfect social distancing vacation destination. Worst comes to worst, we will bring our food for the 5 days and do not even need a grocery store.

I will share details once we decided and booked. I am excited. Again. Seems to be a theme these days. A good one, I might add. A hot tub with mountain view and a wood burning fire place in cold weather? Yes, please! Needless to say we will bring Sam. And hope we do not get to add bears to the list of animals, Sam said “hi” to so far.

Until then, life goes on. Protests are slowing down, but things feel different this time around and I hope people have not yet moved on and will not rest until this time it really leads to change. I am going to use my PTO time, to share some more educational and informational material. Stay tuned.

And of course our Covid-19 social distancing life continues as well. For some more and for other clearly A LOT less successful….

While Covid-19 seems not to be front and center anymore, cases are increasing, partly dramatically, wherever the re-opening has begun. Florida will enter phase two tomorrow. Again without Broward county and Miami Dade county. Unless they request to join, too. Which is a weird way of excluding while including someone. Kinda.

New York City will begin phase one of re-opening tomorrow. I am having my fingers and toes crossed, that this does not throw them horribly back. For now their situation seems to have improved a lot. A true relief!

Henning and I are planning to carefully test the water some more next week. First of all, there is going to be a haircut (both) and color (only me) on Tuesday. It’s a date. I am almost as excited, as I was on my first date with Henning, over 20 years ago. OK, OK that is completely exaggerated. We moved in together 3 days after that first date, so not much compares to that. Maybe I am going to share more details about this one time. Maybe.

But I am still excited (yep, it seems to be a real theme). And then we will drive to Naples to our favorite outdoor mall and do some shopping (mainly to walk around and see something else). It’s going to be almost an hour drive on “Alligator Alley”. Last time we took that route, I stopped counting at 10 alligators lying in the sun next to the highway. Yeah, we are living in Florida, after all.

It would never be possible in the US, especially not for the Covidiot in Chief in the west wing right now, but the Chancellor of Germany does her own grocery shopping. I personally think, she has the essentials all figured out. Thoughts?

Yes, that is really her.

What are you shopping at the grocery store these days? Have you changed any of your shopping habits due to the Covid-19 situation? We have not really. Well of course whenever there is toilet paper or paper towels, we buy them. And some poultry and deli style lunch meat is sold out a lot. But overall, not much of a change.

On the cabin vacation note, one reason for us to choose a cabin in the mountains is, we can go by car. And, of course, take Sam. But also, do not have to fly there. Air travel is not an option anytime soon. Right now my mindset is, no flights until there is a vaccination. Of course, if a vaccination really takes four years, I am sure I will change my mind. But the news about how airlines are handling the minimal protective rules are not super promising.

Sam will make a great hiking buddy. He enjoys roaming the woods so much. Before we moved to Florida, we used to go hiking on the weekends on Bear Mountain. Not a super long hike, but a nice view over the Hudson river valley. It was nice. And there were actual seasons. I am missing them a little bit. But I would immediately move back to Florida after one day in the cold NYC winters.

So here’s to hoping we are lucky with our fall vacation and will get to spend a few nice days in the mountains. Sunny days and some awesome colors of the fall foliage. Cold breezes, hot apple pie and a fire in the fire place. It’s 90 degrees here in Florida, 80 degrees over night. A girl can dream.

But for now, our reality is Covid-19 pandemic and social distancing. Oh and PTO. A week of PTO for me. So please keep your distance, stay healthy and take care. We’ll talk on Wednesday.



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