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Apr 2020 - Covid fall-out, Heroes, Videos, Grounded, Family

Hello fellow inmates,
 
I am down to one degree of separation for loss due to Covid 19. One of my piano students lost his uncle to this relentless virus. His name was Ralph Davis, and by coincidence he was a schoolmate at Washington HS in the 70s. He was a year ahead of me and we didn’t run in the same circles, but he played on the state champion basketball team along with Dean Marquardt – who was my math partner. Small world. Ralph went on to become a well respected coach and mentor in MPS. *tribute article.  Tom’s Aunt Jackie battled the virus at home and recovered. It was very scary, she is now in the hospital with double pneumonia. She is getting good care, please say a prayer. Her daughter, Ivy Zamora, is a mental health professional and was featured in this JS article a few weeks ago. Heroes are all around us! During this Covid storm, we must look at our fellow citizens and really see them. Tom and I are lucky. We have each other, virtual family, cocktails, online shopping and time for reflection. Others are facing crippling financial stress, loneliness, loss of hope, inability to pay bills or keep food on the table. We are not all in the same boat.
 
We still have not received our stimulus checks. And the PPP loan I applied for (on the first day) ran out of money before I got anything. Though I personally feel safe and financially secure (for a while yet, anyway) I am finding the lack of leadership during this pandemic both mentally exhausting and maddening. People have lost their minds and are completely ignoring the facts and science. I get that we want the economy back up and running. We all do. But the more we try to rush it – the longer it’s going to take. Stop the frickin protests already. It’s dumb and dangerous. For me, sheltering at home is not a problem. It certainly helps that my cell-mate is also my soul-mate. In fact, we are such homebodies that covid-life feels fairly normal. But some days I feel semi-paralyzed. All those projects I thought I would accomplish – not so much. I haven’t let it all go to hell, still doing laundry, cooking, occasional cleaning…and showers. Some people are getting tons of things done. I just don’t have the energy or motivation. I often feel overwhelmed and sad. That is not like me. But the world it not as it should be. I think we need to give ourselves slack on corona-time accomplishments – or lack thereof. Slowing down is OK, and could even be healthy.
 
I tried some experimental art. It was fun playing with pouring thick paint. I've been spending way too much time watching TV, news and on Facebook. The memes, song parodies by Randy Rainbow, and other creative home videos help me get through each day. Our friend Sam Steffke has been posting daily jazz piano concerts – with themes from Disney to Jobim. Another friend, Steve Girman, (an old swing dance buddy) is making YouTube videos called Hunker Down with Uke – playing little ukulele tunes accompanied by dancing puppets. We are also making our videos. Tom has a new collection of Burgermeister Magic on YouTube with more coming. Check it out!
 
My mom has had her own struggles. Her independent senior apartment is on lock-down. No visitors unless they are essential. If a resident leaves the facility they are required to self quarantine for 2 weeks within their apartment. There is not much socializing going on with all activities cancelled, but some of them still hang out – play cards, etc. Every 2 weeks Elsa gets a little stir crazy. First she decided (3 days after I dropped off groceries) that she HAD to have some fresh berries. So, after a trip to Pick n Save she was busted. Two weeks later she and another resident were going to take a drive. This might have been OK – except that they made a detour to visit a relative - after going to the store to pick up coffee cake! Grounded for 2 more weeks. They have new nicknames - Thelma & Louise. And just as she was about to get released back into senior society, I stopped her from going on a lunch date with her girlfriend. MOM!!!
 
There have been some bright spots this month. We had a global video chat with family from Germany, Connecticut, New Mexico, Iowa, Colorado and Wisconsin.  They all talked at the same time, but it was fun to see them live! We had a backyard date with our darling grand daughter Sophia, and yes we got some long missed hugs. She is learning to hula hoop and it’s a hoot. We painted rocks, played with the dollhouse and she had a big pillow fight with grandpa Tom. My piano students continue to make me proud. I have had several calls for art jobs – a painted ceiling, a Beastie touch up and web/social media help - still working out details. On another high note, I finally scored a giant club sized package of toilet paper! Woot!!!
 
Stay well. Stay Safe. Stay home.
Anita
 
Sleeping City / Covid Prayer / Spiraling / Sophia Smiles
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Anita Burgermeister, eclectic independent artist in Milwaukee ~ creator of faux finishes, murals, fine art, photography, websites & more. Sharing news about creative people & events in art, music, magic, dance, dining, film, writing, architecture, inventions, life & other stuff. Hope you enjoy and read often!
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