AndyO Blog

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

COVID: June 22, 2022 - It begins

On Wednesday, Cameron's girlfriend Faith wasn't feeling well. As she lay on the couch with a stuffy nose, she said she'd lost smell and taste. Obviously, this was a red alert, so Faith and Cameron (who typically live in a garage bedroom) started wearing masks everywhere. But no one tested yet.

My main concern was that I'd gone into the office on Tuesday and had seen at least 10 of my coworkers; I was hoping that Faith hadn't been contagious until Wednesday. And because I'd asked Cameron and Faith to include Drew in their outings when possible (he was out of school for the summer), they'd taken him out with them in her car the day before. Finally, I thought about how I'd helped my neighbor, Pat, who had had surgery, get from his car to the house (45 minutes of close contact, since I was helping him walk). 

Cameron started wondering where Faith had potentially picked up the virus. Since they had both started working for the cruise lines in Seattle on the weekends, where they loaded and unloaded up to 5,000 passengers per day, I thought it was obvious. 

"But we always wear masks," Cameron's said.

I explained how Omicron was twice as contagious as the Delta variant. 

For those who are curious, cruise ship passengers are required to have a negative COVID test before setting sail, and if people get sick on the cruise they are taken off the ship after everyone else, using a quarantine protocol. But given what I'd heard about Omicron, I knew it didn't take much for one person to infect someone in close contact.  

Later in the day, in between my usual work calls, I asked Cameron if Faith had tested, and he didn't know where the tests were. He said he'd been doing his own "tests" with his array of hot sauces to see if Faith could taste those (including the Carolina Reaper Pepper although I don't think he used this one). I pointed him to the stack of COVID tests in the basket by the door (where they'd always been).

"Could she taste the hot sauces?" I asked.

"Not at first, but eventually."   

Not a good sign, I thought. 

He took a test and headed downstairs. After hearing the results of the hot sauce test, Drew and I put on masks in the living room. After about 15 minutes, Cameron came upstairs wearing a more surgical- looking mask. 

I looked at him, and he nodded. Faith was positive. 

"I've never seen the two lines before," Cameron said, referring to the "test" and "control" lines in the window of the test. Since he figured he'd already been exposed both Tuesday and Wednesday, he decided he would stay downstairs with her. They would only come upstairs to use the one bathroom and also cook (although I was already having second thoughts about that). 

It's worth noting that when Cameron was in Boston for school this year, his roommate got COVID. Cameron was diligent about using a mask and staying in his room most of the time (even if his roommate hadn't), and had avoided it. It was an interesting case study, even with people living in the same house, and one I'd see repeated by other people I knew in Seattle.

My first COVID test

For some reason, I always thought that you only tested when you showed symptoms of COVID. The guys I play music with said I should test right away, as it was important to know the first day you're positive. We downloaded the iHealth app for the testing kit, swabbed our nostrils, and put the sample into the test apparatus (which looked a lot like a home pregnancy test). 

After 15 minutes, we were both negative. 

It felt good in the way you feel after landing safely on vacation after turbulence -- but still knowing you needed to fly home. I knew there would be a lot of testing happening over the next week.

Next, I put together a $300-plus Amazon Fresh order. The last order had arrived about a week before, and we'd gone through all of the essentials. I was happy to be able to get a delivery window between 10:00 and 12:00 a.m. that very night (and it actually arrived by 11:00 p.m.).

Finally, before I went to bed, I texted Brenda about the COVID situation. She'd already been away for a week, hiking around southwest England on a walking tour with our neighbor, Charlotte. They'd been planning this trip for at least six months, which requires being able to walk up to 12 miles a day. 

I told her not to worry, and that I had everything under control. (Like the valet handling the Ferrari in Ferris Bueller's Day Off: "You fellas have nothing to worry about. I'm a professional.")

She texted, "I'm not worried."

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posted by AndyO @ 11:30 PM   0 comments