My wonderful daughter went home to her mother’s today. I am sad to see her go. I hugged her tight and gave her a goodbye kiss as I left into the beautiful sunny morning.
I felt very lucky to get a day of work today, yet I found it hard to get myself out the door. My drive across the bridge was busier than I have seen in sometime and I felt as though people are very much starting to ignore the STAY HOME mantra that has engulfed our country for the past six weeks. I was told not to come to this job six weeks ago because people at the building were staying home and did not want anyone there, even on their balconies. The signs in the elevator stated to remain two metres apart and max three people. The third person on the sign was crossed out and the number two was inserted. Max two people on the elevator. I imagine in places like New York this would be challenging to say the least.
I soaked up the golden warmth of the sun’s rays when I stepped out onto the roof of the building . The amazing beauty of the day, the gorgeous view of the lake and surrounding mountains made me almost forget why I was there. I had a desire to simply stand, stare and enjoy my surroundings. It was time to get productive and I proceeded with my inspection. One of the side effects of coronavirus is people don’t want me to come through their units to inspect the anchors on the balconies. I get to rappel down the side to the decks below.
When I was ten or twelve years old my dad took me to the Bragg Creek Ice caves. The ice caves are about a hundred metres up a fairly steep mountain side. I was about halfway up and my Dad was a fair way ahead when I froze in fear. Vertigo paralyzed me and I could not go up or down. As I sat there numb with trepidation about moving a man came up to me from below. He talked calmly to me about fear and how the height would not hurt me, I just needed to worry about the next step in front of me. Timidly I took the next step and concentrated on what was right in front of me. The stranger stayed with me for a short distance and offered me encouragement. I conquered my fear of heights that morning in the rocky mountains of Alberta and have never been truly afraid since. Even after falling on my head from twenty five feet I still mastered any vertigo that I may have. Some might say that I had the sense knocked out of me.
I dropped down onto the balconies below the roof. When I landed on the fourteenth floor I dropped in on a nice older couple who were on the balcony enjoying the fresh spring morning air. I was not aware they were there and apparently gave the lady a bit of a start when I tossed my rope onto her patio. She asked me what I was doing. I informed her I was there for the anchor inspection. I had to go over the side because the building management did not want me to go through peoples units. Her husband just scoffed at me and they both said that it would be no big deal coming through their condo. This whole thing was a farce they said. All political! No point in locking down our country! They both suggested that it was a huge overreaction. They spoke to their doctor who says that there is no one in the hospital and the media has blown this way out of proportion. I shrugged and said “Italy”. They just shook their heads and said the numbers there are skewed as well. It’s only the old people dying and if it’s their time then so be it. It is strange hearing this from people that may be considered vulnerable.
We are prepared for the worst case scenario. They reiterated their point that in small town Kelowna and many other smaller communities a complete lockdown hurts far more than it helps. I couldn’t argue and smiled and wished them a fantastic day. I climbed off their deck and rappelled to the balcony three stories below. Rappelling is the one thing I do miss about cleaning windows. I am happy that I had the chance to slide down a rope; even if it’s just for a short time.
On my way home I ran into my first traffic jam in two months. Vehicles were backed up down bridge hill and it was a vivid reminder of busier times. As I slowly made my way up the hill it became clear that the backup was caused by an accident. A motorcycle was hanging from the back of a tow truck and a small car looked like it had been rode over by the bike. I cringed when I saw the bike. I always hate to see a fellow motorcyclist down.
Many provinces reduced restrictions today and we will be told Wednesday what we are doing in BC. Judging by the traffic and the people out and about it felt like things are already changing in BC. I won’t enjoy the traffic but I do look forward to eating out. I never knew I would miss having an ice cold beer on a patio while being served chicken wings by a friendly waitress as much as I do.
We ended our day much like we have ended every day in this covid era. Walking. This evening we went for an extra-long walk to work off our dinner. Walking down the road we soaked in the breath-taking views of our valley. The mountains overlooking Okanagan lake were no longer covered in snow. The only white we could see was the peak of Little White mountain in the distance. Above the shadowed hills, the clouds glowed red and amber. Another stunning sunset in a month of walks, sunsets and reflections. We have connected with ourselves and each other.