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Mystery in a Time of Quarantine

March 26, 2020

I wonder what’s happened to Marian?

She always takes her walk at eleven-thirty in the morning but it’s almost three and she hasn’t walked past my house. Normally, I’d say she was probably visiting her daughter or maybe someone took her shopping, but certainly not now. Marian is eighty, and with this horrible coronavirus keeping us isolated like caged rats, people like Marian and I can’t do much. If we’re lucky and it’s not raining, we can walk around the block or around our own yards. With my emphysema, I usually just take a “tour de yarde.” It’s about all I can handle sometimes.

But Marian never misses her morning walk, and I’m worried about her.

I have two main places where I sit. I have an upholstered rocking chair in the corner of my—well, people call it my Florida Room, but I hate that term. Sounds like something a time-share salesman would say. It’s my old screen porch with glass now instead of screens. The other place where I sit is in my bedroom. Now that I sleep downstairs, I watch out the two large windows that look onto Battery Street and a little stretch of Arsenal Street. I love that I can see all the way to both ends of Battery Street without leaving my chair.

My phone is in the kitchen, I think. I’m always losing my phone. There it is. Fortunately, I have Marian in my Contact list so I call her. She answers on the third ring and assures me there’s no problem. She can’t leave the house until her cake comes out. And I worry too much, she says.

I go out to the porch and see young Matt Anderson walking up to his grandfather’s front door near the south end of the street. He’s carrying one of those shopping bags they sell at Trader Joe’s so people don’t have to use so much plastic. Matt’s grandfather is the Honorable Victor Anderson, retired circuit court judge and, as someone called him, “the beating heart of our community.” I may have said that myself.

I had hardly seated myself in my rocker when I saw young Matt run down the sidewalk away from his grandfather’s house.

8 comments on “Mystery in a Time of Quarantine

  1. Sindi Mitchell says:

    I’m hooked already! Wonderful idea. I am in awe of anyone who can write like this “on demand.” Thanks.


    1. Marje says:

      Yay! I’m hooked too. Great idea. Stay safe


  2. I am looking forward to the next chapter!


  3. Jeanne Macomber says:

    Yeah! Now we have something to look forward to.


  4. Esther Freeman says:

    wanted more right away


  5. Margrit Friend says:

    Scrolling down, find only praise, include me too. Already waiting for more. I love the way you paint with words. Stay safe.


  6. abudhabidoc says:

    So excited to keep reading! Thanks for entertaining us:)


  7. tinawhittle says:

    Love it! Thank you for sharing your story!


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