I did not check the news first thing. Instead, I washed the bowl and pans from the molasses cookies I baked last night, and slightly burned, because I was distracted by singing along to country songs. Washing dishes while listening to the morning news on the radio is a good way to ease into the day. It made me smile to hear Zack read the marine forecast and pause at “seas to 11 ft.” and then say he didn’t know if that was right. It seems kind of extreme. Especially for almost April. But everything is topsy turvey. The virus is getting closer. There are two cases in the Yukon, and Juneau has their first confirmed  one.

In the meantime, we held church on Zoom yesterday and it made me happy to see everyone at home (and their ceilings and windows and walls as we moved the screens) being so earnest and gentle with one another. The priest’s dog Maverick kept barking, and Nancy played hymns on her piano and we sang along with the ipad on mute, because when we recited the 23rd Psalm together it was too noisy and the screen kept changing as the program tried to show a picture of the voice it recognized.  It was a sporting first try. We agreed to try again with evening prayer on Wednesday at 5.

Tracy just walked by on the beach with her big white dog and crows. The two, sometimes three, black birds hop and fly behind them as they walk every single day. That’s another reason to smile. And here’s still more. This morning when I came downstairs, Chip said “Hello, beautiful.” He greeted each of the dogs the same way, but I took no offense, because we are all in this together, and those dogs are such good company right now. They don’t care about what’s in the news. They don’t even know about any of it.  Chip is working out now above the garage. In a minute, I’ll go upstairs and pedal my bike for a while. Unlike Zoom, I am used to virtual cycling. I have been relying on Zwift and a Yahoo Kicker all winter to train for the big bike race in June that has been canceled. Yesterday I rode the Yorkshire hills. Today, I think I’ll pedal among the volcanos of Watopia, since I won’t be going to Hawaii anytime soon. It’s hard, and sweating feels good. One of my heroes, the running writer Dr. George Sheehan said sweat cleans places the shower can’t reach.

Someone as smart as Dr. Sheehan also said that laughter is the best medicine, so here’s a spoonful from Lena and Ole:

When Ole accidentally dropped some change through the outhouse seat, he quickly tossed in his wallet and his watch saying, “I’m not going down there for just fifty cents.”

Lena: “There’s some trouble with the car. There’s water in the carburetor.”

Ole: “Water in the carburetor? Don’t be silly.”

Lena: “I’m telling you, there is water in the carburetor.”

Ole: “I don’t think you even know what a carburetor is. I’ll take a look at it. Where’s the car?”

Lena: “In the lake.”