To say that this week has been a blur is an understatement. Due to my malady, I've been sucked into Emily in Paris, at my mother's and everyone else's recommendation, and have gone so far down the rabbit hole that I've started to look up Chateaux in Champagne, and I'm thiiis close to ordering these frames that Camille wore in an episode of Season Three, featuring Sofia the confessional artist from Greece. I want most of Sylvie's wardrobe and half of Camille's and I'm even considering moving my office to Paris. Oy.
I felt odd on Tuesday, odd enough to whine about it to Charlie, odd enough to say "I don't want to go to New York tomorrow," but somehow managed to get my packing done to the point of not fearing death the way I usually do pre-trip, with shirts and sweaters and trousers and cute shoes in neat piles (outfit coordination worthy of Emily) on the bench in the bedroom, ready to go. With a cute navy dress, some pearls, thick tights and a big furry scarf we headed up the M4 London-bound for a friend's birthday screening, and C, who is incredibly amenable, listened to Thomas Keating with me, because he knows I love him, and because it was miraculously tuned in to this podcast on my phone. The essence of what we'd been listening to is this "Let Go & Let God (Act)" which is, I suppose, the idea that if you clear your mind enough and create some quiet space, and trust, then God will help you out. OR Show up and the Universe will meet you half way. It's part of the twelve step too. It was a beautiful drive - bright, cold sunlight and pink and pale blue skies. But I still didn't feel like myself. At all. Even though I'd be looking forward to going to New York for weeks, to see my client's new film, get a breath of the city, and of course my lovely friend Jack who runs his antique/design business out of Sag Harbor.
Then a ping from a client who was also supposed to be travelling to NYC to see the same film "Can you give me a quick ring?" And thus, the dominoes started to smack the table in a satisfying procession; his girlfriend had Covid close to him and wasn't sure he could fly as it was probably a matter of time, so what did I think? We could go but it was risky because he didn't want to be down for the count in New York for two weeks, and then the possibility of giving it to everyone else, but then when could we make the trip and was it worth my doing it without him? etcetera etcetera. Trip gets cancelled quickly. Somehow, my tickets are refunded and my hotel cancelled under the wire. Jack texts to say he can't in fact have dinner because he has to drive to Maine for a client. So in one half hour everything is cancelled and tied up in pretty bows. No New York trip. No disappointed client (more time to focus on the edit), no disappointed friend, and no travelling with a stuffy nose (me).
By Wednesday morning I was feeling distinctly flu-ish but generally bright and even managed a zoom with a client. On a whim, I PCR tested myself and wham, two thick red lines. C banished me to bed in a thick cashmere cardigan and beanie, with Christmas socks, a small schnarfing Frenchie, and steaming cups of tea, and I've been alternately dozing and watching Emily ever since, completely in another world. C brings me supper and sits on the other side of the room in a mask. He brings me grapes and crudités and easy peelers and Dairy Milk with hot cross buns, and he comes in and checks on me while I am sleeping ("I can hear you breathing" I say). I am thoroughly spoiled. Thick slices of fresh sourdough from the local pub, slathered in Lurpak and chocolate caramel wafer biscuits for tea. I managed a shower today, and I walked to the garden gate and back to get some air, because you feel quite strange after almost three days in bed. I've also flung open the bathroom window to let the oxygen circulate.
The pink geraniums who felt neglected on the kitchen sink counter have been in front of the bedroom window for a couple of weeks and are blooming, an astoundingly jolly fuchsia. I've been staring at them intently, and their petit Amazon arrangement to the right of them, and beyond that, the birds nibbling the fatballs in the cherry tree, endlessly, so that we're referring to it as the Garden of Tits. Thousands of tits. Tits are arriving from all over the world to be in our garden, it appears. The word is out. Birds are flying in with their suitcases, whole tit families.
I'm in a fog. A complete odd and blurry state, senses blunted (my taste is not entirely gone, but enough to not notice the flavours or whether there is dressing on the salad), occasional bouts of ocular migraine (kaleidoscopic vision which mildly absorbing if it weren't so annoying), brain thick and stodgy. But I have given in to it. God, I'm spoiled and lucky to be looked after so well. I wonder if this is a cleansing of sorts; a reset? Is it a kind of clearing out to make room for other things? Or perhaps that what we should use if for. A reminder of clarity, of the need for making space for clarity. Does that make any sense? Or is it the Covid talking?