It's been over a year since I posted to this blog. It used to be a weekly post for which I did not fail, but times change and so do people.
In my last post, November 2020, I explained that my father had a heart attack, but seemed to be recovering. I am so sorry to say, he didn't. He died November 11, 2020, leaving me and the family cat, Watson, in a very lonely and seemly forgotten state.
Things are a bit better now. We both have worked hard to adjust to our quiet home. The holidays were far better than last year, which seemed inexistent.
I've had a difficult time getting motivated to write. I am a naturally sociable animal and need that input. The loss of dad, my compromised immune system due to my lungs, and the pandemic make socializing more than difficult. Without it, I find I have very little to interest me in putting fingers to keys and creating.
However, I have written a handful of short stories over the past year. I thought that I would begin to share them with you. My intention is to post once a week again. Whether I can follow through on that or not, I cannot say. I will try and commit.
I hope these stories are thought provoking and in their way entertaining. I've just taken the world a step further down a path I hope we will not end up on in the future.
Honey the Humble
My father said he named me Honey so he would always have something sweet in the house. He was born during the first wave of the Cauldronvirus, or Cull as it is now called.
The name of the virus was also appropriate. It burned through our planet’s population like fire, culling us down to little less than three billion from what was close to seven and a half billion.
Over the past ninety-five years we have learned to live with the constant threat of exposure, but it took us way too long to recognize the danger, hence the deaths of over half the population.
Today, we live with it. I grew up with it looming just outside. No open windows or doors. The virus, which started as a direct contact contagion when my father was born, became airborne by the time my father was less than a year old. ‘Stay at Home’ orders from the government were not enough to contain it. If you wanted to be safe, you quickly equipped your home with an air filtering system, and you didn’t go outside without a hazmat suit.
My grandparent’s generation were scared to let their children out even with hazmat suits. They remembered their time running free outdoors, and the rough and tumble childhoods they lived through. They were so afraid their child would puncture their suit that many refused to buy them. Dad told me he heard stories about his mother and father’s adventures, but he was never allowed to roam beyond the walls of this house.
My father’s generation never shook hands, never touched. Never kissed unless they were in the same household. Houses were modified at the front door to have a ‘safe delivery area’ where groceries and other supplies could be dropped off. Most of the earlier areas were no more than a four-by-four box. Everything in that space was exposed to a strong ultraviolet light to kill the Cull before the item was brought into the house. Later there developed a need for larger ‘safe rooms’. They allowed for the passage of the remains of a victim of the Cull out to the Disposal Team. My grandparents had both died before I was old enough to know them. Our household consisted of Dad, Mom and me.
My father met my mother online. By the time he was in his late teens the internet was the only way you met people. They courted online. Dad introduced his parents to her online. After all, if she agreed to marry him, she would move in with the three of them. Lucky for me she applied for a permit to travel, dawned her hazmat suit, and made the trip from New York City to Portland Oregon.
I have lived in this house all my life. In the old day’s dad used to say I would be cataloged as paranoid… I am afraid to go out into the world even with a suit. I get my supplies delivered to me through the ‘safe room’.
I shipped my dad and mom’s body out through the ‘safe room’.
I will die and this house will sit empty… deserted… I never found anyone online to share it with. No one to leave it to. Mother nature will reclaim it as she has her planet. We are just specks of dust on her surface… for now.