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Lockdown in Spain: BR contributor Marcus Slease on life in quarantine in a foreign country

Updated: Feb 21, 2021



Photo by Marcus Slease.


 

Sometimes something real and more-than-topical falls in your lap. Former Bear Review contributor Marcus Slease reached out to us recently. He, like many of us, is living a quarantined life. However, in his version, the site of quarantine is Spain, now a global coronavirus hotspot.

This is a daily record, via an autofictional account, of his experiences. What follows is days one through nine.


Haines Eason

Co-editor, Bear Review


 

LOCKDOWN DAY 1


No cars or people. The sound of birds everywhere. You can only leave the house to buy groceries around the corner. People allowed into the shop a few at time, with social distancing. Silent shopping. Shopkeepers in masks. All the playground equipment taped shut. Yesterday, in the evening, the entire city came to their balcony to clap and cheer for the front line doctors and nurses. The balcony is across from the hospital. Some cars pulled up late at night with people running in coughing. Fear, hope, strangeness. Whiskey in the evening. Or maybe a tad earlier. When this is over, we will appreciate being able to move about freely. It is hard to concentrate on anything. News and more news. Jumping jacks in the living room.



LOCKDOWN DAY 2


He picked up salt and whiskey at the supermarket. Some people fully wrapped in scarfs and masks. Walking down the aisle everyone practicing social distancing. Many people jittery. A person jumped when he walked around the corner for the salt aisle. Someone said hola to someone and they waved and stepped back from them. No one talking. Silent shopping. Tape to stand behind. The cashier in mask and gloves. There are many elderly people in their local community and in the building. Walking 10 flights of stairs instead of using lift. Back home to online high school teaching. Whiskey in the evening. Or maybe a tad earlier. When this is over, we will appreciate being able to move about freely. It is hard to concentrate on anything. News and more news. Jumping jacks in the living room.



LOCKDOWN DAY 3

Whiskey in the evening. Or maybe a tad earlier. When this is over, we will appreciate being able to move about freely. It is hard to concentrate on anything. News and more news. Every night at 8 p.m., everyone comes to their balconies to clap for the front line health workers. Some cheers and hollers. The ambulances, at the only hospital in the city, across from their balcony, flash their lights in solidarity. Jumping jacks in the living room.



LOCKDOWN DAY 4


There is more presence of police and civil guard on the streets. Only one person per household allowed grocery shopping at a time. Feeling the effect of not being able to walk for exercise. 14 hour work days. Skype conferencing with 100 students weekly from all over the world. On the other hand, they feel grateful for a job and some income. When this is over, we will appreciate being able to move about freely. It is hard to concentrate on anything. News and more news. Priorities: limiting the news, bending and stretching, dance therapy. Whiskey in the evening. Or maybe a tad earlier.





LOCKDOWN DAY 5

When this is over, we will appreciate being able to move about freely. It is hard to concentrate on anything. News and more news. People were renting dogs for people who want to walk. The renting of dogs has stopped. Too late. Medicinal marijuana. Stopped. Coming out of the cave. Dancing on balcony to silent music. Whiskey in the evening. Or maybe a tad earlier. Keep your blood moving.<