Week 10 of self-isolation has begun, although my staying at home all the time is not happening. I would have been taken away in a straight jacket by now, had it not been for outdoor trips to exercise in close proximity of my apartment at least 4 times weekly.
Are you tired of hearing about the pandemic? So am I, but it makes good fodder for another tirade.
Friday, I went to Neshaminy State Park (Sarobia), just a few miles up the road, and attempted to avoid the crowds along the pathways, ending up in the wooded areas mostly off the beaten tracks while bird-watching and photographing what I could.
Pennsylvania’s Governor Wolf, also on Friday, had declared another 12 counties to move into the Yellow Phase of his commonwealth-reopening plan, which will take place on May 22nd. At that date, 49 out of the 67 counties in Pa. will have the stay-at-home orders rescinded, converted to “aggressive mitigation” which had been explained in a previous post. We’re not included.
Last week’s rave spotlighted a conversation I had with a resident of my apartment complex, his asking me if I knew anyone who had been infected with the COVID-19 virus. Fortunately for my circle of friends and acquaintances, none have tested positive to my knowledge. The second map of Pennsylvania above shows the total cases recorded in each county as of May 15th.
Bucks County, where I live, has the 4th largest amount of cases reported in the state with 4,325, so somewhere the potential for the so-called invisible enemy to strike is prevalent in people. Delaware County is ahead of Bucks. Montgomery County comes in 2nd, while Philadelphia County had the greatest total of cases, all of which comprise the Philadelphia region.
Our metro area consists of over 6,000,000 residents, making the total of 31,266 new-coronavirus cases .5% of the population; albeit, over ½ the commonwealth’s number of infected people reside here, creating quite a hot spot. The current tally statewide as of Saturday at 12:06 p.m. is now at 61,611 reported cases since the virus hit, with 4,403 deaths, according to the FOX43 website.
My collection of washable cotton masks has reached 13. Two have fallen apart from the first batch I bought and had to be thrown out. The second set of 5 are better made and should outlast the others. Since we’re going to have to wear masks in public as part of our “New Normal,” I’m going to order another 5 or so in the near future.
It’s no wonder our area is a hot spot. I’d guess that 2 out 20 people I see during my outdoor treks are wearing masks. While at Neshaminy State Park the other day, approximately 5 out of 100 persons wore masks, me being one of them; most of whom were scattered about at Logan’s Point, sunbathing and recreating in chairs on the Delaware Riverbed at low tide. Kids ran around everywhere, playing close by to each other. People weren’t socially distanced very well at all.
What was interesting, in my opinion, was how the unmasked ones appeared to look at me as if I were contagious like a leper would be if found nearby. Leprosy, incidentally, is spread the same way as the coronavirus. The former bunch took great lengths to avoid me, where I in turn made great strides to avoid them. I heard someone refer to me as “Batman,” because of my black mask, presumably.
To make matters worse, it’s now tick season, which has started off with a bang. Due to the unseasonably warm temps this winter, the new batch of nymphs are horrendous, foreshadowing another plague of sorts for this summer. I picked off well over a dozen while hiking around Sarobia’s back 40. I hate to think how mosquitoes will ravage us as well.
Topping things off, we’re also in the Hurricane Season now, with the first tropical depression having formed off the Eastern United States:
Tropical Depression 1 has formed off the Florida coast. It is forecast to track just off the East Coast before moving out to sea by midweek. Direct impacts are not expected here, but it may contribute to rough seas and a coastal flood risk later this week. #NJwx #PAwx #DEwx #MDwx pic.twitter.com/Yql6IaVF47— NWS Mount Holly (@NWS_MountHolly) May 16, 2020
However, the season starts officially on June 1st, but it’s no surprise to me it began half a month early. After all, this is 2020, the year that has been kicking our asses since it started. Pardon my vulgarity. Aren’t I like a ray of sunshine?
Thanks for stopping by and for your continued support.