Sunday Morning 4/5/2020: Staying Home While Moving In

Afternoons on the lanai . . .

What another strange week this has been, trying to balance social isolation with getting ourselves ready to move into a new place in less than two weeks. We’re off to a good start, but there is still much to do, all while trying to have as little interaction with others as possible.

Social distancing at Costco . . .

We signed our lease this past Tuesday. It was great to get another look around at the layout and start figuring out where things could go. After taking care of that, we headed back up to Kapaa to Otsuka’s furniture store, where the manager opened the store just for us so that we could shop for a sofa and mattress. We purchased a beautiful, pale gray leather sectional sofa (on sale) and a hybrid memory foam mattress. With a friend’s help, we will pick up both on our own tomorrow and get them down to the apartment as the store is not allowed to do deliveries under the current state shutdown rules. On Wednesday we went back down to the south side to open a post office box and set up a weekly CSA pickup at the Monkeypod Jam store, then went to Costco to get started on getting things we need for the new place. We had hoped to stop at Walmart as well that day, but by the time we finished at Costco we were too tired so headed straight for the condo. We took Thursday off from shopping and took care of things like address changes, internet service, voter registration, and census forms. Brett got a next-day appointment for the internet set up so was down at the apartment again early Friday morning, but while the network is operational the internet doesn’t work! The technician wouldn’t come into the apartment either because according to him we had not been quarantined long enough. Brett has been on the phone with the internet company and they think the problems can be fixed tomorrow over the phone. Brett also did our Walmart shopping on Friday and got some more things we needed. Yesterday we visited another furniture store in Lihue, Two Frogs Hugging, that also graciously made special accommodations for us to come in and shop, and we found an affordable teak table and chairs, and a storage cabinet that will also function as a TV stand. Brett will be up early on Monday to rent a truck or van from Home Depot, the only place such things are available right now. We will run over to Costco first and pick up a gas grill and TV, then go back up to Otsuka’s to pick up the sofa and mattress so all the big and/or heavy things can go down to our place at the same time (our friend Alan will be helping move the heavy pieces). Anyway, things are moving along and we will be ready to move out of the condo this Friday morning to begin life in our new apartment!

. . . and at Walmart.

Although we’re getting things done, moving and starting over from scratch in the middle of all the shutdowns going on all over is still proving to be a challenge at times and we’re constantly having to change and adapt. Stores here don’t have the things we need (can’t find a white bathmat, for example). We had planned to place an order with IKEA and include flat packs in our shipment from Portland that Brett would assemble here. However, the earliest possible delivery date available from the Portland IKEA was May 15! At that point, our shipment probably wouldn’t leave Portland until the end of the month at the earliest and not arrive here until late-June/early-July at the earliest. So, we decided to scrap the IKEA idea and use local sources and Amazon to find other pieces of furniture and things we need. It may end up costing us a bit more, but on the plus side we should end up with better quality goods than what we would have gotten from IKEA and our shipment over here won’t cost as much. We’re going to get started next week on getting our stored items back over here and have our fingers crossed there are no problems with that.

Airbnb stepped up this past week and refunded the full amount of our Mexico stay, overriding the host’s decision to only refund 75%. We’re still out of luck with our Aeromexico tickets, but are going to hold off on contacting Alaska Airlines as things may change yet again next month. We also received a credit from Bryn Mawr for part of YaYu’s flight home! That was a nice surprise and reduced the cost of that ticket. Both WenYu and YaYu are receiving refunds for some of their room and board costs, as well as a small final lump-sum payment for lost income through work-study. YaYu will be banking both amounts to use toward next year’s costs. Finally, I qualified for a break on my student loan – no payments due until September 30 – something I wasn’t sure would happen as it’s an old loan contracted under different rules than now. I’m on autopay though so payments will continue, but all of it will go directly to knock down some more of the principal.

This morning I am:

  • Reading: I have tried to read a couple of times, but my mind still wanders too much and I can’t focus. I think once this move is over and we start getting settled I’ll be more relaxed and ready to read again.
  • Listening to: It’s a beautiful, quiet morning. The sun is shining, there’s a gentle breeze blowing, Brett is puttering around in the kitchen, YaYu is still asleep, and other than birds singing outside it’s perfectly quiet. It makes me think how noisy this condo complex must have been when it was full of tourists! The whole island has been quiet ever since we arrived, and we’ve heard several locals comment that it’s almost been a return to how it was in the past.
  • Watching: I watched this week was the movie Parasite on Amazon Prime, but that was all. I thought it was superb and completely worthy of the academy award. Meiling sort of jokingly asked if we had been watching Tiger King, but I don’t think there is anything that could make me watch that. I’ve been compiling a list of movies to watch on Amazon once we get settled and get our streaming services up and running.
  • Cooking: I haven’t really come up with a menu for the week, and am not even sure what we’re having tonight. YaYu is the cook these days (I’m the prep cook), and I’m going to let her look at what we have and decide what she’d like to make. Costco had chicken in when we were there on Wednesday so I grabbed a package of thigh fillets, and we still have ground pork, tofu, pork chops, and eggs on hand for protein as well as plenty of vegetables and bread. I’m pretty sure we’ll be having mabo dofu this week and the pan of stuffed peppers from Costco, but other than that I haven’t a clue what she’ll come up with! We’re going to order a pre-made meal from Monkeypod to have on Friday evening as we’ll be busy unpacking and settling in that day. The following week YaYu and I will work together to make a menu for the week on Monday after we receive our CSA bag and see what we have, then we’ll do the grocery shopping for the rest of what we need on Tuesday.
    This is around 1/3 of what we bought at Costco (and some recycling). The rest of the stuff stayed in the trunk of our car and Brett took it down on Friday.
  • Happy we accomplished this past week: We have bought everything we need that we could find here on the island; everything else for the apartment will be coming from the mainland. I have ordered some things from Amazon that we couldn’t find here, including a bed frame and nightstands, but much of the order isn’t due to arrive until the end of the month, and some of it not until the end of May!
  • Looking forward to next week: Although there’s a lot to do to get ready, I am looking forward to moving into our place and getting adjusted to our “new normal” on the south shore of the island. We are also looking forward to getting the paperwork completed for the car transfer and also getting our driver’s licenses updated.
    Homemade banana splits for a sweet anniversary treat!
     
  • Thinking of good things that happened: We had a lovely anniversary dinner last Monday, and we discovered we had everything on hand to make banana splits so dessert turned out to be a bit fancier than originally planned! Also, we’ve seen some Royal Hawaiian trucks out on the road delivering and picking up shipments this past week, so that gives us hope that it won’t take too long to get our stuff. We’ll see. The sofa we bought was a great value and something of a dream come true for us, and we’re happy with the other furniture we found as well. 
  • Thinking of frugal things we did: There is nothing frugal about setting up housekeeping from scratch, especially when there are only two places open to buy necessary items, but we are doing the best we can. It’s felt though as if our money has just flowed through our fingers this week, but it’s also been sort of amazing all that we’ve needed to get, even to set up a simple lifestyle. However, with the discount we were given at Otsuka’s we ended up paying less for a better sofa than the leather one available at Costco! Getting our refund from Airbnb was a huge relief because of the host’s pressure for us to cancel without guarantee of a refund. There’s been no food waste since we’ve been at the condo, I’m happy to report, something of a surprise considering the amount of food we moved in with.
  • Grateful for: We were both touched and thankful that the managers of Otsuka’s and Two Frogs Hugging offered to open their stores for us so that we could shop safely on our own. There are very few furniture stores on the island (and they’re currently all closed), and Costco has an extremely limited supply of furniture, with just two sofa choices that didn’t appeal to us at all. Two Frogs Hugging had a great selection of interesting pieces at affordable prices (as well as many things way outside our spending limit), and we were allowed to shop in their warehouse for some great bargains. We’re also very thankful for the Monkeypod Jam store setting up and serving as a CSA pick-up location. It’s very close to our new place, and we’re looking forward to getting some great Kaua’i produce as well as helping out local farmers. We’ll be getting a bag of mixed items for the same as what we used to pay when we lived in Kapaa (only this time the farmers will choose what we get).
  • Bonus question: How are you filling your days under a stay-at-home order? When we are not busy in some capacity working on getting moved, I’m mostly on my laptop, reading blogs and news, (I think I’ve solved the WordPress/Blogger commenting issue!), checking into Twitter to see what’s going on, writing or at least trying to come up with topics for the blog, and looking for sources for things we need. I’ve also been playing a fun game on my phone from time to time, Animal Restaurant, recommended to me by Meiling. Although I thought it started off slowly, I’m now completely hooked. Nothing I’m doing requires a lot of concentration though – I’m still unable to read more than a couple of pages before my brain is off thinking of all the other things I’m juggling in my head. It’s the same with watching TV. Of course, there are always meals to fix or at least prep for, cleaning to be done, beds to make, laundry to do, and endless things to pick up around the condo and those take time too. It’s kind of a sad, lazy life right now and somewhat depressing even with all we have going on.
There’s no social distancing right now at the Minato Ward Tokyo Regional Immigration Services Bureau (photo credit: The Japan Times)

From what we’ve heard from our son, and what I’ve been reading, it seems we got out of Japan, or at least Tokyo, at the right time, although Japan recently extended stays for visitors, including short-term tourists like we were. We still could have been stuck there for several more months though. Foreign visitors are currently stranded though as almost all international flights have been suspended. Many of these visitors were having to crowd into immigration offices along with the usual spring rush of students and other workers to try and get their visas extended, but the wait time for that deadline was recently extended by 90 days. It’s scary to think where we’d be at this point if we had stayed, and especially where YaYu would be. Japan is bracing for COVID-19 cases to explode again and what’s going to happen in the next few weeks is unknown. By the time we left many, many people in Tokyo were ignoring the social distancing orders – restaurants and shopping malls were full, and people were gathering for outings cherry blossom viewing parties in parks. High schools in Tokyo have been ordered to remain closed until May, and whether other schools will follow next week is currently unknown. I am especially worried for our daughter-in-law because she works for the national government, and it’s extremely unlikely that she will be ordered or even allowed to work from home – she is considered “essential.” She has to ride the train to and from her work as well as parking near where she works is completely unaffordable.

I hope you are all continuing to stay safe and healthy, as are your family and friends, and that you’re keeping your distance. To those of you with relatives or friends who have contacted the virus, I’m sending you and them all my good thoughts and prayers, for a speedy recovery. What a trying, scary time this is!

22 thoughts on “Sunday Morning 4/5/2020: Staying Home While Moving In

  1. I so enjoy your travels and have been a long, long time follower and very infrequent commenter. I am very curious about the quarantine, as my friends live in Kauai and their son had to fully isolate himself in their house for 2 full weeks upon arrival to Kauai. With the penalty of a very large fine if he didn’t. She said it was for anyone arriving on the island. Did you arrive before the isolation rules or are you just crossing your fingers you don’t get caught? My kids flew through there getting home from out of the country last week and said they were told you had to go directly to where you were staying and not leave for 14 days. I am so bummed for you that this has changed the trajectory of your travel and hope things go smoothly in Kauai.

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    1. We arrived before the quarantine, so have been able to go out for essentials, including shopping for things we need to move into the apartment – we got a letter from Honolulu explaining that we were exempt. Our daughter YaYu, however, arrived after the isolation rule went into effect, so she has to remain in the condo for the full two weeks. It’s the reason we’re here until the 10th – she can’t leave until then.

      It’s actually been nice though to have a few days to complete the move rather than have to try and do everything at once. Brett and I are heading over there later today to do some more cleaning before the furniture starts going into tomorrow.

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  2. I am so happy you have been able to find permanent housing, furniture, food, etc. and that your daughter is there with you. It looks like it is the most beautiful place to be quarantined. I do hope you continue to blog and post lots of pictures of Hawaii. I so enjoy your blog and have been delighted with your travels around the world. I am sad you didn’t get to go to Mexico because that is the one place I have thought about retiring to outside of the U.S. I would have loved to have seen your pictures and listened to your thoughts about living there. Perhaps you will be able to travel there in the next year or two. I sure hope so. I have been working from home since folks were exposed to Covid 19, at the Courthouse and it has been rather bizarre having court hearings teleconferencing. Defense attorneys have discovered they can contact me at all hours on Saturday and Sunday and are just being ugly. It is what it is. No, I am not going to agree to let someone charged with murder, and there were several eye witnesses, out of jail. Folks need to be safe and not worry about getting killed. Nonviolent folks, I am totally agreeing to let out. Other than that and long bond hearings over the internet, I am fine and don’t feel any more stress than normal. To be real, all I ever do is work , occasionally see my grown kids, walk, read fav blogs, shop at Walmart, Dollar Tree, and Dollar General, and play piano at church ( which is obviously cancelled.) It really hasn’t affected me that much I guess because I am still arguing with folks all day, it is just not in person… lol. I have always had to visit my granddaughter every week via technology, so that has not changed. It has made me realize how much I love being home and would love to travel when I retire. I do feel terrible for the folks with this virus and hope and pray a cure is found soon, or at least a vaccine.

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    1. Thanks, Cindy. We are grateful for what we’ve been able to accomplish, but getting it all done under these conditions is a chore above and beyond a normal move. If we can get through this week we’ll be OK though. We keep our distance, wear masks when we shop, wash our hands, etc. but just finding things on the island at times has been like some sort of twisted treasure hunt!

      Brett and my main topic of conversation is still travel – we refuse at this point to give up, although we’re confindent all travel is going to be very different in the future. We still want to go though.

      I too pray and hope a vaccine is found soon, but it may be at least a year at the earliest. Mother Nature is going to have Her way with us though for a while, unfortunately.

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  3. Slow, slow, quick, quick….isn’t that the fox trot that I learned as a child? I am glad you have had time to set up things and the AirBNB is giving back money. Having a bit of refund for college will help with next year—but it does not match the disappointment, does it? The furniture! HUGE!
    We have slowed considerably, but now the stop is on. Today was my last one store shop for the next two weeks- just the tail of proteins. We now have enough to make three weeks of food without going out except to pick up our CSA (prepaid/pop trunk/go). Guck, I hate frozen chicken, but it is protein.
    The police are ticketing people coming out of stores with only “non essential” items. The huge bridge signs between Maryland’s Eastern and Western shores assure people that “if you come over you had better have a driver’s license address on the side you are entering.” That fine is “turn around or $5000!”
    Our peak is supposed to be in the next five- ten days. It is a sure reminder that we have few hospitals and even fewer doctors in our county! Maryland is five to seven days behind us–and they have flattened the curve- so I probably won’t see the grands until June or July. Slower, but longer….
    My friend in Hong Kong said she, too, is in a second lock down. It is much more “by the book” this time. Stores are selling larger quantities to keep people home. I think that is what I am seeing here. Slow, slow, quick, quick, slow, slow
    Keeping your daughter in law in good thoughts. Stay safe!

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    1. The refund from Airbnb was a small but important victory – especially since we need the money right now. Moving is never cheap, and having to buy furniture, etc. makes it even worse (although purchasing it is fun!). We will be out of the condo on Friday morning and over to the house, and hopefully it won’t take too long to get everything put away (simply because we don’t have very many things).

      Hawaii is really cracking down – now even those who travel inter-island have to go into full quarantine for 14 days – you can’t even go out to buy food. I track the numbers almost every day and visitors are still coming even though there are almost no flights. Why? Maybe they have timeshares? Or paid for a vacation and can’t get a refund? Actually though, it’s nice to be here without all the visitors – it’s very peaceful – although I hope they eventually can come back as the island’s economy needs them.

      Tokyo is getting ready to lockdown – waiting to hear from our son what that will be like. I’m hoping they can figure out a schedule where at least our son can drive into the city and pick her up so she only has to ride the train one way. We’re learning now that if we had not come back when we did we would have been stuck in Tokyo for months, not the way we wanted to do things, and YaYu would have had no place to go.

      You sound prepared and ready for what comes. We will be too by the end of the week (I hope).

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  4. Can’t really tell that we are in lockdown. Still a lot of traffic and I still have to go into town every day for wound care for my father. My parents are constantly sending me to get something from the grocery store which remains very crowded. Under the governor’s ruling churches are allowed to remain open. How crazy is that!. Ours has been closed but we have a mega church in the area that continues to hold services. No wonder we have 11,000+ cases. Several cruise ships with sick passengers are also being allowed to dock in South Florida after being turned away from every other port. Initially DeSantis told them they couldn’t dock but Trump intervened and he reversed his decision. I’m torn between feeling sorry for the passengers and resenting the fact that hundreds of infected people are allowed into the state. They took the sickest to local hospitals and sent the others to the airport to fly home No testing! just sent them home to spread it further. You are lucky to have decent politicians in Hawaii.
    Don’t work too hard when you move. It’s not worth getting hurt. The people in Hawaii are wonderful neighbors to allow you into the stores like that. You picked a beautiful place to live. Keep safe.

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    1. It is crazy, Vivian. There’s no order, and really no one in charge overall. I’m with you too about the cruise ships – very sorry for the passengers who have become ill, but who in their right mind would get on a cruise ship in the last month? And now, they are going to be putting how many others in danger? Our country’s preparation and response to this has been abysmal in my opinion. Some state leaders have stepped up, but over all it’s been awful.

      Brett is doing all of the hard work now. Then he gets to have (well, fun for him) putting things together while I get everything clean and put away. I will be glad when this is all done though.

      Take care, your parents too.

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      1. Laura, You have said this a number of times. I am wondering what you think should have been done differently in the US?
        This is a really long comment/question but you always seem open to conversation.

        Since the first tests were defective, it has been difficult to get a handle on that. How did Japan come up with tests so quickly? Were you tested in Japan? Your kids? What was the criteria to be tested? Did they let you know the number of deaths in the area? Hospitalizations? Was every part of Japan treated the same? It seemed you were able to get out in your neighborhood, was that normal? Did they tell you right away that it was going to kill hundreds of thousands? Did they change their cautions as it progressed?

        I know South Korea required all of their 50 million to be tracked . Do you think that would have worked here with 340 million? The CDC and NIH were in charge here at the beginning – most of the people on the teams were from HIV days.They were the ones that started the travel banns. How about in Japan?
        When did Japan close schools and send home foreigners in comparison to the US? How soon after the first deaths did they close factories? How did the people do without money?
        Do you think we should have stopped the repatriation of Americans early on? “Get home or stay there”. I know that Hong Kong was blaming the US for the second wave for sending home Chinese students (who were not allowed into the mainland, but had to stay in Hong Kong).

        Masks?PPG? Do you think that the hospitals would have had enough if the US had put out that these were necessary to the general population? Did Japan let their people know that they should not use the hospital masks/gear?
        I know I sent some masks to Hong Kong- they were required early on (but they are common there anyway).
        My daughter’s Lowes had an Chinese couple come in every morning and take everything that was stocked in late January. Amazon was out. I don’t blame them. The cries I heard from my friend were pretty scary. (Same ones we hear a few weeks ago).
        They were still short on TP (If everyone is “going” at home instead of work–that causes a “run”). They suggested full strength bleach for cleaning. Lots of “foreign” servants were put on planes without pay early on as well. You had to have papers for the province if you were stopped- or off to jail.Now they were told that the US has the cure but will not share it. (Now, That was an interesting conversation.)

        Now that Tokyo is going in for a second quarantine, are they doing things differently?
        I just really want to know what you think could have been differently –not an argument at all. I watched the wave and am trying to figure it out…. Since my daughter is in public policy for disasters, we have talked about all of these things.

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      2. Good questions, Janette – I’ll do my best although I’m no expert. First, I consider American culture – very individualistic, and full of people who don’t like to be told what to do! That’s compared to Japan, where there is cultural preference for following rules to to keep order. Japan was one of the first countries outside of China to have cases of the virus, especially as many visitors/tourists come to Japan year-round (a big group arrived the same day we did back in January for example). Mask wearing is also a social norm in Japan – people wear masks not so they don’t catch anything, but *so they don’t give something they have or might have to someone else.” So, when warnings about the virus were put out (early to mid February) masks disappeared off the shelves; so did hand sanitizer, disinfectant soap and wipes, and toilet paper as people were told to stay home, if possible (Japan has no tradition of working from home or tele-commuting, so this has been a big hurdle for them). At first people practiced social distancing, streets and shops were empty, and schools closed nationwide the first week of March (or maybe the end of February). Slowly though, as the reported number of cases stayed low, people ventured out more, to parks, restaurants, etc. While not back at normal levels, it was still shocking to see how many were disregarding social distancing. And, like what is now happening in Hong Kong, the second round is predicted to be worst than the first. Neither Brett nor I was testing in Japan nor requested tests – neither of us has had any symptoms that resembled any associated with the virus (no fever, cough, breathing issues, or any of the others).

        The U.S. was just flat out slow out of the blocks. You can find the president’s messages from the beginning of January, and instead of warning people, even suggesting social distancing, instead it was things like “there will soon be zero cases” or “it will disappear when it gets warm” or “everyone can get a test” and so forth even as the virus was already cutting a huge swatch of death and illness through Italy and other countries. In other words, we nothing to worry about and things that should have been done weren’t. And, LOTS of people believed him (thankfully plenty didn’t and took precautions). Our government should have been telling people early on to STAY HOME – IT”S COMING. It should have been all hands on deck to get a test out and available to all. The Federal government should have been checking up and stocking up on PPEs and other supplies for a pandemic, prepared to help out states as they needed it. Instead, the pandemic task force had been dissolved, the Federal government got a late start on stocking supplies, to the point they have been confiscating orders that were made by individual states as their cases mounted and there was no supplemental help coming from the Federal government (which I personally think is going to end up being the great scandal of this period. Also, no matter what he meant, Jared Kushner’s “these are OUR supplies” statement will live in infamy).

        We currently have a chief executive that is beyond ill-equipped to handle this crisis. Everything is still all about HIM and his ratings. He is the wrong person in the wrong position at the wrong time. But, we are stuck with him. In my opinion we need a strong military-related person who is used to overseeing vast, complex situations (think Eisenhower in WWII, etc.) and who has the authority to get things running on a national level. Instead the president is touting a possible drug solution, even though that is at odds with what experts and doctors say, and after it has been discovered either yesterday or today that he owns stock in the company that makes the drug, and in spite of the fact that two other countries have suspended use of the same drug because of heart problems it is causing. Surprise, surprise (not).

        One of the best statements I read is that if in the end it seems like the choices made were overkill, then they were the right choices. Look at South Korea. Overkill to many Americans, but they sure flattened that curve. Same for other countries (i.e. Germany). We instead had kids going to the Florida beaches for spring break, and people are still getting on cruise ships. People are still gathering in parks or other places. Considering all that has been going on, I feel extremely fortunate to have been able to return to Hawaii, and be free of the virus (knock on wood). Moving into a new house has been the worse thing that could be happening for us, but we are cautious and hopefully will come out of this OK (healthwise).

        America is fighting against its own culture right now. We are extremely individualistic, and it’s hard for us to do what’s right for the group – people are staying indoors, wearing masks, etc. because they believe it protects THEM, not because it will spare others. I still think we have a lot of heartache ahead of us.

        Don’t know yet what’s going on in Japan because I haven’t heard from our son – if he’s got both kids at home he’s got his hands full, especially as he’s got his own work to do. I do know the government sent two cloth masks to each household (not per person) – and the Japanese people were FURIOUS. They will follow the rules, but at the same time they expect their government to step up for them. Japan’s law prevent the government from ordering a complete shutdown, but hopefully the word will go out more strongly this time.

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  5. It’s so interesting that there was no quarantine rule/ self isolation rule when you traveled. My mom came back to Canada from Texas before you, and by then we were advising people to self isolate for 14 days, so that is probably why your Internet guy would not come in. I am glad y’all are ok though.

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    1. There has been a self-quarantine rule in place since we arrived in Hawaii, with a more formal required 14-day quarantine put into place four days after our arrival. We have stayed quarantined for the most part, although we have been allowed to take care of essential activities that relate to our finding a place to live and making it operational. We wrote to the head office in Honolulu and have a letter from them that these activities can take place. We understand people’s reluctance to associate with us, and have dealt with it as it happens. It’s been frustrating, but we get it. The guy is coming back this morning to finish getting us hooked up.

      Most of Hawaii’s COVID-19 cases have been travel related which is why visitors, returning residents, and even those on inter-island flights are now required to stay quarantined for 14 days. People are still traveling though, believe it not, but it’s down to a trickle. There is now only one flight a day in and out of Lihue, and only 16 in and out of Honolulu.

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      1. Yeah, I think it was informal in Canada too; my mom and step dad isolated a few days before you did – and stayed in for an entire two weeks, we were able to get groceries to them etc. i had to go by my friend for two weeks – until they passed it, but they are fine. i am glad y’all are ok too and i know you would understand people’s reactions – people are reacting that way everywhere, but totally understandable.

        and JJ, I definitely only use jj but I will sign off differently haha

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  6. Second try. But might be third…I’m tired and stressed. LOL.

    Glad the Airbnb refund came through! Setting up a home is so expensive. And I’m sure you’ll be glad when you’re settled.

    Life here is crazy…we’re still trying to sell our home, and I spent yesterday doing a walkthrough video since neither our realtor or a videographer is allowed on site. Our realtor has had requests for this, so he asked if I was comfortable doing it. I am no professional, but I confess it was fun. And an iPhone and the iMovie app made it pretty easy.

    We’ve had occasional sunshine and it’s warming up, so it’s great to see lighter days and the gardens coming to life.

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    1. I do not know what is going on with my comments right now – some, like yours, go to spam. Others require approval even though they’ve been commenting for years. Thank you for persisting – I’m so sorry it’s been such a pain to comment. I have finally found a work-around for my own commenting issues with Blogger – I have to sign out of Safari, open Chrome, and can then successfully comment. These are all WordPress issues though – hopefully, they will eventually be resolved.

      It’s the same here with businesses being closed. We were allowed to shop for furniture but only by calling the store and setting up an appointment to shop privately. We are so grateful for this. Delivery has been iffy though – it was a real effort for Brett and our friend to get our sofa and mattress up into our apartment yesterday while the chest and table and chairs will be delivered at some point – maybe they will be using an unmarked van? I would give just about anything right now to be able to get a haircut, but I have a feeling that I’ll be able to make a ponytail by the time that happens. We were in Costco again yesterday and there were lots of people there again.

      Your walk-though filming sounds almost fun, and it’s great that others are asking to see your place even if that’s not in person. I have a friend that just got into real estate last year and up until this was off to a successful start but everything has now ground to a halt for her – she is still getting herself out there in a variety of ways, everything except in person it seems, so hopefully she will eventually be able to pick it back up.

      We can’t wait to get this move over with – it’s only Tuesday and we’re both exhausted and there is still so much to do, even with the limited amount of items we have. The apartment has stunning views though, and it’s cool and breezy – I was there all day yesterday and never had to turn on the ceiling fans. That’s a new one for me here. After all the rain we experienced upon our arrival, it’s now sunny and warm. I was happy to get our CSA box yesterday, and find an open stand for more fruit.

      Take care! I can’t wait to get settled and isolate ourselves full-time again.

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      1. Amen to the haircut!! My husband asked me this morning if I had decided to grow my hair out. And then he ducked. Ha! Funny guy. I had to laugh at the unmarked van comment re: delivery. We keep getting optimistic video emails from our builder but I did sales for a lot of my career. I know it’s his job to put a positive spin on this situation. But That Woman from Michigan is highly unlikely to unleash us next week. 😉

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      2. I think it’s going to be a while until we are “unleashed.” We went through two checks on our way back to the condo today after working on our new place for a while – we were questioned about why we were on the road (and our reason was valid and we were waved through). Hawai’i lockdown is at least until the end of April, if not longer.

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  7. It looks like you have another follower using the name JJ, but I’m using all caps so I hopefully we won’t get confused.

    I think it’s smart for Hawaii to do the 14 day quarantine and limit the flights. If this virus ever took hold there, it would be a disaster since Hawaii is so isolated. I believe Kauai only has that one hospital near Walmart, is that right? So it could easily get out of hand fast.

    It’s so bad here that I rarely leave the house anymore. I get all my groceries and everything else I need delivered. I only walk outside during odd times of the day so I don’t have to deal with trying to avoid people. We’re supposed to be wearing masks, but no one is. And I see flagrant violations of social distancing all the time. The governor closed all state parks today because of this.

    Good luck with the move!

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    1. They are really taking the quarantine seriously here – we went through two checks today on our way back to the condo from our apartment, when we were finished working. There are signs everywhere about the quarantine, and they are not just threatening about the fine. So far it seems to be helping, although there are new cases in the islands every day. Kaua’i has had 16 cases so far, and all were travel-related. Seven visitors were sent back to the mainland, only one person was hospitalized, and the others have either recovered or are being monitored in their homes. There have been four deaths though over on Oahu.

      People are getting out and about here though – most are wearing masks, too. No parties though, churches are closed, and other gatherings cancelled. When the weather is nice people go to the beach, but practice social distancing there (easy to do).

      This move is wearing us out, but things are coming together. We’ll be ready to move in full time by Friday.

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  8. Thank you for your summary. I agree that a strong stay home order would have been good, but Americans are way too independent to think any thing could happen to them.They are convinced- for both sides- that they are constantly being lied to. How about- things evolve when we have no data?
    It all seems to blend together. I was fielding my first pleas in Hong Kong in late January. The Chinese had reported (through The WHO) no easy person to person contact- my friend in Hong Kong said that was a lie and I sent her a bunch of masks from Lowes.
    ” China bought between January 24 and the end of February 2.2 billion masks” The impeachment ended Feb 5th.

    New York has a great Chinese New Year celebration after the first cases hit Washington state. 29 Jan the task force was formed. I started a diary. The administration declared a public heath emergency and closed travel from China on Jan 31- Northern Italy followed suit (I looked that up).
    Fauci said on the 29 of Feb (first death in US) the states were at low risk.
    Japan issued their lockdown Feb 13 after their first death. Italy’s first death was Feb 22. They closed their northern universities in March4. (I looked those up as well- curiosity)

    The first social distancing/quarantine from the administration (because there was a choice not to invoke national over state law) happened March 10 . Mar 5th US. Congress passed (written by a Dem from NY) and signed phase one to search for cure / course of treatment/tele-heath/ clearing embassies& international aide.
    Washington state went head first and put out enforcement on March 11. They peaked last week.
    By 14 March Maryland closed down. Hogan waited until USDA money had been released to feed the 1-18 yr olds out of school. That was the last time I saw my grands. 22 March NYC issued theirs.

    Not sure who in the military could have taken charge- the Air Force still has cadets at academies and their suicide rate rose quickly. Navy decided to keep people aboard a ship with cases. Army closed training a month ago along with Marines. That Army Corps general and his quartermaster are pretty good—but private industry is what needed to be mobilized. US reacts better to honey then sticks.

    Many people continued on trips even when the Diamond Princess pulled into Japan at the end of January…I have a friend still in the hospital there from that ship. I have one friend still stuck in Spain–did not heed the warnings that it was shutting down. “Who me?” I love my country….we don’t like to be told what to do.Heck, I still have a trip planned for July and August out of Baltimore….LOL Wishful thinking.

    The TP should come back -since the industrial people (we all go potty at work and school) are finally turning out home use stuff. I am hoping that blood serum tracking will work like it does in Germany.

    For a historian, this is fascinating. As a parent/grandparent/friend of people dying/ aunt of ten- thirty year olds out of work, this is terrifying.MD just announced they are looking at on line school next year as well…..
    I think the most fascinating is watching it through many different eyes. Thank you for adding yours.

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    1. For some reason your comment went straight to my trash folder. I do not know what is going on with WordPress these days. Another regular commenter’s post went straight to spam. It’s driving me crazy.

      Yes, the timeline is important. More keeps coming out though and I think important (and maybe shocking) information will be added as time goes on.

      I didn’t mean that we needed someone straight from the military, but they produce the kind of people who know how to oversee things like supply chains, personnel needs, lockdown orders, etc. Maybe someone higher up retired from any branch? I think things could have/would have gone much more smoothly and with less loss of life if all of this has been gathered under one command, so to speak. I think more people would have listened and obeyed as well as instituted them earlier.

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  9. In case you are at all curious about Tiger King, there is a wonderful podcast from Wondery. It was a podcast first but they’ve rebranded it since the show has come out. It allows you to dive into the story without the visuals which I found disturbing.

    I’m an essential state employee (I’m a forensic biologist) and my agency was bound and determined that we were all to physically come in to work, although they did put us on differing shifts to help with social distancing. Our governor stopped that and ordered that as much as possible employees must work from home or be paid to stay home. I’ve work in office four days in the past month and I never saw more than three other employees each time. That makes me very happy. My sister is a nurse so she impressed upon us how important it was to isolate earlier than others. We had an employee test positive in early March so I think that helped push our governor towards action. It saddens me to see how few US state officials have taken this seriously.

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