Being social during a pandemic is not easy

It’s hard to go back into what was before the pandemic. Even going out to lunch can be fraught with emotional trauma.

The Ladies Who Lunch had made plans to meet in December. One has died. One has lost both parents within a 6-week period. One would be vacationing on a remote island. One would have another engagement. One would have a serious medical checkup and would be running late.

That said, four of us arrived at the destination, a very new, upscale eatery, just as its doors opened for the day. Along with about a gillion others who wanted to eat in this very trendy, very large restaurant. We snaked through a long line, ordered our meals and were seated by a delightful worker. All of the staff was delightful. Very young. Very cordial. Very accommodating.

My lunch, fig pizza, was superb. So good that I would like to name it the signature dish for Fresno where we have grown figs for over a century. A hibiscus tea was also superb. Food and service were great. The surroundings, not so much.

It’s a large building, with high ceilings, all hard surfaces. It filled to capacity within the hour we were there and the noise level just kept ratcheting up. The line at the front was still serpentining with people waiting to order and get seated as there were no more seats. As it got harder to hear, one of our party suggested moving to another site, quieter, for coffee.

I don’t drink coffee mid-day, nor did I feel the need to move as I could hear fine and my hard seat was comfortable for my well-padded derriere. The thought of moving through noontime traffic in one of the busiest parts of town made me shudder to what would undoubtedly be another full parking lot. I headed home. Exhausted.

Social interaction in the time of COVID is not easy.

8 responses to “Being social during a pandemic is not easy

  1. Fig pizza is an entirely new concept for me. I too would have been uncomfortable with all the crowds and noise. It is exhausting trying to find our way into our new world.

    • The pizza was extraordinary. It was called pizza but nothing like any pizza I’ve very had. I’ve never liked crowds and noise, and what with the pandemic shutdowns, I have become quite happy with my very small, very quiet life.

  2. That is why I only go out unless it is absolutely necessary. At my age I don’t know if I will ever get used to the way it is now out among the public. Traffic is a nightmare.

    • I have become well accustomed to my very small, very quiet life, doing most things in my own zip code. Going into the busier parts of the city rattles my nerves. I drive across town 2x a week for my storytelling activity with first graders, but it’s in the opposite direction to the big wealthy shopping centers.

      • I stay in a 12-mile radius until I go to have my car serviced. I feel safe and the traffic is not too bad on the side roads. I stay off the freeway.

  3. Sounds nerve wracking. We are not city folks at all so this wouldn’t be a pleasant experience. The food does sound interesting though.

  4. Even though I have more freedom with our region in New Zealand opening up after 100 something days, I’m still not gone “out there” and definitely not gone to a cafe. My hair is need of some professionalism but I’m still not gone out for that (although I was having issues with the mandatory “pass”). I am going to a Garden Party next week, limited numbers because of the restrictions with rules but I think I will manage it because it’s not in a busy avenue of other centres…

    There is a definite hesitancy in this “new world”…

    • I’m not seeing any hesitancy here in the states. Probably the reason the icus are full and the public health officials are worried for the holiday & winter season. I’m seeing fewer and fewer masks when out.

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