Hoarding strange teas and other consequences of Covid-19

It’s been a hundred fifty-one days since restaurants and various sources of entertainment began closing and I’ve become a cranky shut-in.  All right. It’s only been two weeks, but it feels like many more.

The highlight and the most fearsome aspect of the day or week is the trip to the grocery store, because you never know who else might be there and what they’re carrying besides a boatload of toilet paper. Someone told me that at one Costco in the area, off-duty police are working to prevent TP wars in the aisles.

I read today that many of us have turned to Cheez-Its, Doritos, peanut butter-filled pretzels and Cadbury eggs in response to boredom and anxiety over spending so much time with our families (I meant being stuck indoors).

My husband’s and my current diet is a combination of 1) uber-healthy, which consists of a little protein and many fresh vegetables, literally so many that they spill over the edge of the plate onto the floor where the cat refuses to lick them up, accompanied by 2) many homemade treats where sugar is a key ingredient.

We’re trying to cut back on grocery store visits. Meanwhile, I keep looking for a safe time to go. Last week we went on Saturday morning and that was too crowded; so this week we went on Friday morning and that was too crowded, especially in the produce section. In the store where we regularly shop I’ve not noticed empty shelves where Cadbury eggs were once laid, but I have had to fight for the last broccoli floret.

still a few cans of                    red  beans left

Stores are cutting their hours to give them time to stock toilet paper and canned beans. I believe the popularity of the latter might acccount for such TP anxiety.  The photo here shows the shelves of a store that didn’t start stocking early enough.

Other than shopping, my other entertainment involves the daily arrival of jokes that have had time to travel from one end of the world to the other and back. Everyone,  I’ve memorized the one about Donald Trump and Greta Thunberg.  And I think I’m ready to act out the old scene from “Cheers” with subtitles in English and (I think) Chinese. This is not to say that there’s not room for some new ones.

I still haven’t had much of an urge to clean house, but I have checked cupboards for duplicates. That’s when I discovered I’d apparently been hoarding ginger tea and ginger/turmeric tea. What an amazing collection! It was too large to get all the boxes in a photograph.

I decided I’d better drink it, if for no reason than that I’d have space on the shelves for popcorn and other treats. First, I had to find out what this heady combo was good for.  As it turns out the answer is it’s good for everything, from possibly increasing one’s lifespan to working as an anti-inflammatory, to boosting brain repair and preventing Alzheimer’s. And no matter how long the social distancing lasts, it will be another hundred and fifty one days before I’ll have to buy more.

About stillalife

I retired June 30, 2010 after working for 40 years in the field of education and most recently doing school public relations/community outreach in a mid-size urban school district. I wrote for superintendents and school board members. Now I'm writing for me and I hope for you. In this blog, I offer my own views coupled with the latest research on how to preserve our physical and mental health as we age, delve into issues most of us over 50 can relate to like noticing wrinkles and forgetting where we left our keys, discuss the pros and cons of different ways to engage our minds and bodies after we leave the workplace, and throw in an occasional book review, all peppered with a touch of humor, irony, and just plain silliness. Also, I'm on the third draft of my second novel since retirement.
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6 Responses to Hoarding strange teas and other consequences of Covid-19

  1. Darlene says:

    Oh, Ann—you made me smile, all through your blog. I love your awareness to everything around you, from grocery shelves to your own cupboards—your sense of writing style is just perfect. . . Cynicism and humor. Bravo! Thanks—

    • stillalife says:

      Thanks, Dar. I’m writing these for me; getting too anxious about catching the virus at the grocery store. But also enjoying cooking and baking for the first time in a while. I hope you’re doing well. (under the circumstances, that is)


  2. Eleanor Owen says:

    Reading this is the most fun I’ve had in weeks. Some people have a DNA built-in sense of humor. And this social isolation gives that person a perfect opportunity to express it. Pour it on! I’ve had enough Simply Naked Snacks, I’m hungry for humor.
    For me, it’s not those exotic tea bags, it the unrecognizable hors d’ourvre in the back of the bottom shelf of my freezer. Since it’s been frozen for heaven knows how long, and if I bake it for an hour or so, they’ll practice social isolation, and I’ll know what they are. I’ll eat slowly and take note of symptoms. Probably no nutrition and no flavor. But, why not. A good diversion until I read another Still Life.


  3. Laura says:

    good to hear your humorous take on being shut in.

    Have you looked at getting your groceries delivered? A friend who may or may not have COVID reports that Amazon “can deliver anything short of an Oompa-Loompa.”

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