Sunday, April 12, 2020

Easter parade

In a normal year, B's family would have been gathering at niece T's house for Easter dinner. So this year, at 2 PM, just about the time we'd be sitting down, came my introduction to Zoom in the form of a family gathering online, with a lot more people than would have been likely to get to T's house, relatives from all over the state and four others, including two states on the opposite coast.

Our instrument was B's iPad, which turns out to show only nine frames in panel mode, making the participants look like the Brady Bunch. There were more of us than that, so the alternative was to show one frame at a time, automatically switching depending on who was talking. This doesn't always work, as one person might be silently turning the camera around to show off the view, while everybody else exclaims in delight. The event lasted an hour, and was at least an opportunity for family social chatter.

Afterwards, since we were already fully dressed for the camera, we went out to take a walk down the neighborhood. It was a warm afternoon, and a Sunday, and Easter to boot, so there was a whole Easter parade of people taking their constitutionals: walkers, dog-walkers, bikers, small kids on skateboards with handlebars. Everyone was very good about keeping physical distance, even the occasional car drivers. Our initial goal was to get as far as a certain house with a brick frame around its front lawn, on which lizards like to sun themselves on warm days. We call it the lizard house. Today was a four-lizard day, a good number. The house also turned out to have a cat in the front window, which we hadn't seen before.

At another house, we saw a very eager small dog up against its front window, so we knew what its name was: How Much. (How Much is that doggie in the window. To be added to all the other famous lyrical animals, like Olive, the other reindeer.)

Off to make dinner: B's favorite meatloaf, plus a surfeit of brussel sprouts mislaid from last week's grocery delivery.

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