Like so many of you, my life feels right now like this sculpture in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, placed in the American Wing; we seem to take a photo (or five) of it everytime we go there, so that it ranks it right up there with snapshots of anything Monet. It is titled The Angel of Death and the Sculptor, by Daniel Chester French. The sculptor is mid-stroke and the Angel gently takes his hand — stilling him — as if to say, “You’re done for now.” If this work seems familiar to you, French was also one of two sculptors who created our Lincoln Memorial.
I came slalomming down off my very enjoyable time with the Orange County Quilters to a buckets-of-rain day, one where I’d normally stay in, but that day I went to two different grocery stores, trying to stock up our house. In two-days’ time, our world came roaring to an end with the advent of the novel corona virus, also known as (and always in all caps) COVID-19. I had it easier: one of my friends was in Brazil at Iguazu Falls, and did about a 28-hour turnaround trip back home.
Yesterday I sent a letter out to some friends and the outward flowing of goodwill back towards me, and to others on the list, has helped me deal with this isolation. I was feeling undone by the contant drumbeat of bad news and sadness and worry about our hospital workers on every level and the deaths and the lack of tests and misinformation and too much information and should I make masks and will my neighbor give the disease to me? sort of stuff.
So to get myself back on track with doing something creative, I’m listing here some of the projects I hope to undertake. These are quilting projects only. I have lists and lists of finishing up the house, regular stuff, and the burning question (which, feel free to comment on) is whether I should have the house painters back to finish up the details on their recent big job? I’m calling it Quilting in the Time of Covid, with apologies to Gabriel García Márquez.
- Finish quilting and binding a quilt I’m referring to ReJiggered.
It’s a variation of City Streets, just in different colors. I’d thought about the name Vitrailed, which means to set with stained glass, because the Tula colors are reminscent of our trip to La Sagrada Familia a couple of years ago:
2. Totebag with Spectrum Pattern on side
I’d made this for an EPP workshop I taught last August, and gave it away. I’d like to try another, in different colors.
3. Make up Azulejos in a tangerine/indigo version
Fabric gathered — check
But that’s all.
4. Work on the quilt that I’m calling Eridani (no image yet).
If we all ever get back our lives, I’m supposed to teach this in October of this year. Stay tuned.
5. Make face masks.
So my husband and I had this conversation this morning while getting ready for our Stay-At-Home Church, and it went something like this: If only the people who get sick are supposed to have face masks, yet all hospital personnel have face masks, should we have face masks to protect ourselves, too? Yes, but…the big caveat is if you are using a purchased face mask, then no. I’ve chosen Dora’s version (above), and will be making a few for ourselves and family.
In cleaning out I found a To-Do List pad which only has 3 lines on it per day. So I have to choose only three things to accomplish. Last night when I couldn’t sleep, I made a week’s schedule, listing only three things. But then my Frantic Self addded more and more, writing in the margins and on the back.
Why is it that in this time of coronavirus, we still feel the push to do? I think it’s because we want our routine back, of Mondays at the grocery store, Tuesday at the Quilt Shop Sew-day, First Mondays with my little group of angel sewers, Tuesday-then-Friday-then-Saturday meetings with my guilds. We just didn’t see that Angel of Corona Virus headed our way, stilling our blur of activity, asking us to stop.
So I write this hoping to find a new balance, a new routine. I found it helpful when my Gridsters in the group letter talked about what was their experience during this time, and what they were working on. While I’d enjoy having a giveaway from any comments you might write, the problem is that I’d want to mail everyone a little treasure, instead of just two or three (and even though I love my USPS and need them to keep us connected, I won’t do that). However, I’d love it if you’d share what steadies — not stills — and how things are in your COVID-19 world.