Covid-19 Life in a Darkening World


Birds fly high above
the darkening world below—

It’s time to come home!
sunlight quickly vanishes
from the horizon.      ~ms
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Pandemic!
All around the world, people are being ordered to stay home to avoid contact with a novel coronavirus (COVID-19). This virus is highly contagious and spreading fast. Healthcare workers are now facing dangerous conditions, courageously risking their own lives to help others who are sick.

Because Covid-19 is a new virus of dubious origin, no one seems to know exactly how bad it will get or how long it will last. ‘Non-essential’ businesses have been shut down in hopes of slowing the spread of the virus, but how many weeks will companies and their employees be able to survive with no income? Not long! Suddenly fear, panic, chaos, and confusion everywhere! What is happening?  Life changed so quickly. I’m worried.

I keep reminding myself that there is always a powerful bright light shining behind dark clouds. But then, I hear more negative news — more people infected; more people dying — and I am upset again.
I do realize that it is extremely unhealthy to be stressed-out all of the time. So today, I decided to wander back through old 2014 photos to a warm summer day on Chincoteague Island, Virginia (2014).  As I started my virtual walk through familiar images of wildlife, sand, sea, and sunsets—life began to feel normal again!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
On seashell covered sand
going nowhere and everywhere,
my thoughts easily travel
on the earth beneath my feet!

I am free to remember
sounds of waves breathing—
sighing into sand,
while seagulls calmly walk
through foaming waters.


I enjoy the sight
of a sand castle fortress
(or cake with stick candles?)
that the sea can not reclaim.
And ah….what a surprise!
Nibbling on something green while sitting in white sand,
behold a real beach bunny (without a bikini).

Since I have always been a little “directionally challenged,” the position of the bird in the next photo always makes me smile.
Feeling confused?
Just remember–
If you ever see a sign that says
“HEAD IN PARKING ONLY”
and you don’t know what it means,
follow this bird’s example and park sideways.

I also saw a tall, majestic bird while walking through the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge  on that summer day. He didn’t seem to be concerned about my presence, and stood still long enough for me to take a picture. After I returned home, I searched the internet and came to the conclusion that I had just had the honor of meeting a “Great Blue Heron.”

The most comforting image of all
standing high above the trees below,
a symbol of protection and hope
in the darkness of a storm—
a lighthouse!
Lighthouse in the distance
Lighthouse
Within these photos
I have happily wandered for hours
high above the panic and fear
in this darkening world.
But now, it’s getting late.

The sun is setting once again
and another day is ending.
Reluctantly I bring my mind back to the present time, back home to 2020.

I know my husband is still watching the TV downstairs, because I can hear the familiar voices on the 24/7 news arguing about COVID-19. They repeatedly ask who is to blame for this pandemic, how did it get out of control, how many are sick, how many will die–and on and on. Why do they rarely mention those who have recovered? Why do they offer no hope?  The constant negativity is demoralizing.

To make matters worse,  the 24/7 news often introduces their ominous updates with the equivalent of horror movie music. Why are they doing this? Is this extra musical ‘fear mongering’ necessary? I don’t think so. Stop! People are being paralyzed by FEAR!
While I was writing —
I realized that I have been on WordPress for almost 8 years now (since May 2012). During this time, I have enjoyed reading through all of the various posts.  Through pictures and stories that other writers have shared, I have virtually traveled to places that I would never have seen or experienced otherwise.  Thank you.

Now, during this indeterminate time of isolation and separation, everyone please stay well and stand strong!  With all of my heart and soul, I pray that life eventually returns to the way it was before it fell 6 feet apart!

Virtual hug  ( ❤️ ) 

About Mary Strong-Spaid

You can find me any time wandering around in my own mind gathering thoughts.
This entry was posted in Chincoteague Island, COVID-19, Nature, Virginia and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

51 Responses to Covid-19 Life in a Darkening World

    • Hello from Texas! I just went over to your website and read some of the things that you have written. Like you, my sister also lives in New York–in Brooklyn. It definitely is the epicenter in the United States right now. Stay safe, stay well!

      Like

  1. Pierre Lagacé says:

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts Mary. I hope that all people will quickly realize that there is still time to reunite and care for each other while our minuscule Earth is continuing on its lonely voyage through the Universe.

    Liked by 1 person

    • This has certainly been a wake-up call! Just a few weeks ago, everything was perfectly ‘normal.’ And then, without much warning, the whole world changed and life (as it was) came to a screeching halt. I have never seen anything like this before!

      Like

      • Pierre Lagacé says:

        We know now how people might have felt on December 7, 1941.

        Like

        • Actually, I know how some of the people felt on Dec. 7, 1941. My husband and I worked on base in Pearl Harbor HI, back in the 1970s. There was a older lady there who told me about the day Pearl Harbor was attacked. She said everyone in the surrounding area saw the smoke rising, and thought the Navy was simply running another test–just another military “exercise.” She said it took a while for people to grasp that something horrible had happened (similar to the misunderstanding that the Coronavirus is just another flu). It was hard for them to believe the Japanese had actually attacked Pearl Harbor. Another man (an retired Navy sailor) told me that he walked off one of the ships docked in Pearl Harbor, right before the attack. He said there was only a skeleton crew aboard the ships at the time, because many had been asked to leave. According to him, there were a lot of strange things going on that gave him the feeling that “something’ was about to happen. He also said he believed that President Roosevelt knew about the attack in advance–but didn’t try to stop it because the U.S. needed motivation to enter the war.
          (I listened to his story, but I had a hard time believing that the U.S. would deliberately put its own in harms way–to justify entering a war).
          There is an interesting book about this online called “The Full Truth about Pearl Harbor,” written and published by John T. Flynn (1945)—that basically supports the story the sailor told me that day. Seems there may have been a lot of politics surrounding the attack on Pearl Harbor. There are several links on line to the full text of Flynn’s book. Here is one:
          https://www.heritage-history.com/index.php?c=read&author=flynn&book=pearl&story=_front

          Like

          • Pierre Lagacé says:

            Just finished reading. Very informative. I concur that President Roosevelt never thought Pearl Harbor would be a target. Everything was leading to the Far East. However his diplomatic policy towards Japan was a total failure leading Japan to make the first move. To cover this failure they found two scapegoats. Sad…

            Liked by 1 person

      • Nancy Phelan says:

        Hi Mary,
        Just found your beautiful pictures from Chincoteague Island and it was wonderful to look through them and forget about “Staying in Place” for a few minutes. Jim and I used to love
        going there and even went there and stayed a few days in the winter on President’s Day. I remember seeing lots of birds and I would ask him “what kind is that? ” He always said it was an Egret. Sometimes it was! It was nice to bring back those memories. Hope you are doing OK with staying in place. It is getting a little bit too long! I hear Texas is opening up soon but we in PA are not seeing it happening for sometime. Hope you and yours are all doing fine. You sure are talented at taking beautiful pictures. Take care, Nancy

        Like

        • Hello Nancy!
          Yes, on May 1st, Texas opened to a certain extent. Only allowed 25% occupancy in stores and restaurants, and everyone is supposed to stay 6 feet apart.
          Last Friday, they opened up the hair salons too. Probably was a long line!
          I went to the dentist a few days ago, and I had to sit in the car and wait until they sent a text to my cell phone letting me know I could come in.
          So many strange new rules. I wonder what Jim would say about this Covid-19 situation!
          Like you, I love the beach and the ocean (that’s probably why I loved living in Hawaii).
          In many of my posts, I am WISHING for a way to go back there:
          https://storieswithnobooks.com/2013/02/05/on-wings-of-thought/
          I love birds too, but most of the time…admittedly…I don’t know what kind of bird I am looking it.
          Once I had a hawk on my back porch (in Virginia). After I posted the photos, someone kindly told me it was a young Red Shouldered Hawk.
          It had the most beautiful intense eyes! https://storieswithnobooks.com/2013/06/24/the-hawk-stands-with-no-fear/
          I do have one photo that combines Hawaii (island of Kauai), the ocean, and a ‘Tropical bird’–perfect combination of things that I love, all in one place.
          https://storieswithnobooks.com/2012/09/10/birds-watching-people/
          Anyway….
          Thank you for writing!
          You just helped me wander back in time to a lot of happy memories again. 🙂

          Like

  2. Graham Brown says:

    Thank you Mary. Stay strong and safe, Graham

    Liked by 1 person

    • I just looked up the status of Orkney on the internet. I was thinking that perhaps there was no Coronavirus on the island. The articles that I found say there are only 2 cases. I pray that there are no more to come. Stay well! Best wishes to you and all on Orkney!

      Like

  3. Barbara Oksanen says:

    Mary, I just read this and thank you for taking me to a place of serenity during this time of stress. I was able to walk with you on those beaches and relax thinking about the sounds of the wind and waves. The blue Herron gave me a little jolt since they are the birds that steal my Koi, I have a little negative feeling for them. But you put me right back in a wonderful place of peace, I’ll be reading this again tonight, thank you and please stay well.
    Thank you,
    Barb Oksanen

    Liked by 1 person

  4. katelon says:

    Great photos! Glad you are finding ways to rise about the fear and panic stream. Please do not believe all you read and hear about this virus. It is not true. The fear and panic and lock-down serve those who want control and more power.
    Stay in peace!

    Like

    • I think there is a certain amount of politics involved in all of this. And that worries me too…I am not sure of exactly what is going on. The economy can not remain shutdown for too long. That will cause even more suffering, and that isn’t a good thing either.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Beautiful post with uplifting humour and the love of Mother nature… I bet she is sighing a great big sigh right now as the planes are not criss-crossing and less traffic on the roads… Keep enjoying Nature Mary…
    Take care of yourself.. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Sue,
      Don’t know why it took me so long to answer. It is no longer early April!
      No one thought this situation was going to go on for so long! Texas was opening back up and things were going well. Then in mid-June there was a surge in cases. Some say it was because people got careless over the Memorial Day weekend, when they went to parties and to the beach. Others say it was due to the protests that happened around the same time period.
      Here in San Antonio, the protesters stood shoulder-to shoulder–and some were yelling and screaming directly into other people’s faces. But we were told that the protests were probably not the cause of the surge in new cases? I don’t know about that. Here is a video of how the protesters were acting one day–downtown near the Alamo. Some wearing masks; some not. Definitely not 6 feet apart! (In the video, the men with the guns are members of the “Texas Freedom Force,” keeping the protesters from coming any closer to the Alamo).

      Whatever caused the surge in cases, it is now July 17 and we all have to wear masks (the temperature this week has been 100+ every day).

      Like

      • It’s so sad how this is used to divide . Rage! On so many levels, people losing jobs, loved ones, freedoms.
        Here too Mary, mandatory masks in shops from next week. Now I wonder why now? Wouldn’t you think that would have been five months ago. Lots of questions, not always adding up.
        No worries about late replying. We have lives to live.
        Take care Mary.
        Love and blessings to you 🙏💕

        Like

  6. susurrus says:

    The rabbit on the beach made me smile. I wouldn’t have thought they would like hopping on the sand – to say nothing of getting it in their fur! I was surprised to see chickens on the beach too in America last year.

    I can’t imagine who would have thought of playing horror movie music to accompany the news. They news is already chilling beyond all measure, as you say.

    Like

  7. Lynda says:

    I loved your photographs, but that little bunny in the sand was perfect. Thank you for sharing all this loveliness with us. We need it.

    We have watched strange days unfold and as weird as it is for us… just imagine being one of those river rafters (in the news today) who having finished their three weeks in the Grand Canyon, only now hear the events we have been living during this time. Both who were interviewed are in medical jobs and will be on the front lines this week. Time warp.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I didn’t know about that!
      It would definitely feel like the Twilight Zone….to go away for only 3 weeks and come back to a totally different world. It is NOT the same place! It would be very hard to go from the river to the front lines of a pandemic– without warning. Quantum leap!!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Amy says:

    Why are they (24/7 News) doing this?… People are already frightened! I feel the same.
    Thank you for these beautiful photos, Mary.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Amy!
      My husband will sit and watch the news for hours.
      I think they try to keep their viewers glued to the screen by keeping the level of fear high.
      After a short time of watching/listening, I can’t take anymore.
      Listening to the same negative reports over and over again, I start to get the unnerving feeling that the whole world is coming to an end–any minute now (even though I know that is not the truth).
      I will put my headphones on and listen to beautiful, calm music.
      Have a great day!!.

      Like

      • Amy says:

        Hi Mary, My husband does exactly the same. He checks news before having breakfast. I can’t take those negative reports, and there is nothing you can do about it… I, too, need good music to lift me up.
        Have a wonderful day, Mary!

        Like

  9. wedreamaloud says:

    Great post! Beautiful pics and beautiful words!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the compliment. I really like the name of your blog “We Dream Aloud.” I have been dreaming awake lately, as I am having difficulty sleeping at night. Many nights I try to sleep in a hot bath with epsoms salt added. Back in early April, I did not think that we would still be dealing with problems associated with the Covid-19 virus in mid-July!! This whole situation just seems to go on and on and on……

      Like

  10. Leyla says:

    Great post and Beautiful pictures!! Stay Safe, Mary

    Like

  11. Lander7 says:

    Wonderful and stress reducing, thanks

    Like

  12. dilipnaidu says:

    Beautiful pictures just right to brighten the day.
    Thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Amy says:

    Thank you so much, Mary for this beautiful walk.

    Like

    • Mary Spaid says:

      Thank you Amy! I just read what you wrote on your ‘About’ page. I am glad that you were able to travel to so many wonderful places.
      I wrote the story above about my reaction to Covid-19–on April 2.
      It is now May 12.
      Sigh. I thought the fear, panic, and social restrictions would be gone by now–but NO. I live in the great state of Texas and they are trying to slowly reopen the businesses, but some people have been so terrorized by the constant negative news, they are afraid to go back out now. Other states still have the people in lockdown, and those people are beginning to protest in the streets. This is such a sad situation. Very difficult.
      I think that, next weekend, I will drive down to San Padre island to walk along the beach, breathe in some salt air, and listen to the voice of the ocean.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Amy says:

        Thank you for taking time to reply. This virus is new and scary, people simply don’t know how to deal with it… I went to nursery and bought some plants yesterday, hobby and I planted them. It made me very happy, and we are looking forward to see the blooms later this month. 🙂
        Enjoy your beach walk next week, Mary!

        Like

  14. Raven ❤️ says:

    Beautifully written hello from Neath South Wales.
    I have stopped watching the news and looking at social media. For the same reasons as you are looking at your photographs.
    Are mental health matters look after yourself my friend. Many have recovered but there is no mention of this.
    It will get better keep writing keep smiling 😊

    Like

  15. MAGIC WORDS MARY, LOVE YOUR SITE, CHINA

    Like

    • Thank you China! I have been having an interesting evening. Spent a half hour in a rather small laundry room with my husband and 2 cats–because of a tornado warning (we don’t have a basement). Obviously, it passed us by …because I still have electricity and a computer. 🙂 But there is still thunder and lightning and a LOT of rain. I think it is supposed to be this way all night!

      Like

  16. Steven Scott Bailey says:

    Darned good stuff as always. God’s creation is that which is truly worthy of our appreciation. All else is artificial. Never, ever watch the msm. Trust the plan. Trust God. Virtual hug….

    Liked by 1 person

    • It has been a little over 2 months since I wrote about Covid-19.
      New prohibitions, rules, and regulations have been implemented, which are now placing placed unnecessary restrictions on people’s lives.
      Freedom lost. I hope it is able to return.

      Like

  17. Beautiful pictures, love the beach! We are headed down to Hilton Head Island for a week next Saturday, can’t wait!

    Michael
    http://www.MichaelsWoodcrafts.com

    Like

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