CW: Mentions of an apartment fire in which no one was hurt.
Lavender sings while reading the weather forecast at the beginning of the week
“It’s raining, it’s pouring
Quarantine is boring
Covid spreads; I’m cracked in the head
Rain aside, six feet wide, I’ll go out this morning!”
Lavender doesn’t go outside and stand in the rain for novelty’s sake, though she wants to!
The end of the week
“Anyway, I ran the numbers and, hold on, someone’s fire alarm is going off. Let me mute myself on this call until our neighbors clear the smoke away from whatever they just burnt on their stove.”
Coworkers nod sympathetically at the vagaries of the work-from-home life
“Oh, hmm. The whole building alarm is going off. This one might be real. I think I’m going to need to evacuate.”
Lavender and Partner try to evacuate with Trauma Kitty. They get turned away from the nearest stairs by firemen spraying hoses inside the apartment around the corner. The fire is clearly real, but it appears to be under control. Lavender and Partner then talk (and talk, and talk) while awkwardly trying to maintain six feet of distance between themselves and the other tenants until it is safe to go back inside.
Partner: “Look on the bright side. If any of your coworkers recorded your nonchalant evacuation from that meeting, you could become a ‘cool girls don’t look at apartment fires in a pandemic’ meme instead of a bathroom meme. Between this and the tornado, you could become an office legend.”
Lavender: “Oh, don’t worry, I am looking on the bright side. I briefly considered just staying in my pajama bottoms this morning because who was really going to see what I was wearing on my bottom half. But, I put on my big girl pants anyway.”
Partner: “In that case, you should really look on the bright side. I briefly considered not wearing any pants this morning, but I did. I’m pretty sure you still had Skype on when I was corralling Trauma Kitty.”
Lavender: “There’s a casserole waiting for us when this is all over that I had just taken out of the oven for lunch.”
Partner (looks momentarily concerned): “Lavender, did you actually remember to take it out of the oven, or did you just think you did? You usually ask me for help?”
Lavender: “I know I did. But, I don’t actually remember if I turned our oven off when I started the meeting.”
Partner: “That won’t be an issue as long as it is empty. An oven isn’t a microwave.”
Lavender: “Yeah, I know.”
Partner: “You are making that face, though, like you are imagining having to ask the firefighters to go check our oven in the middle and debating whether it will be more embarrassing to ask proactively or have them find our oven smoking when they check the fire didn’t spread to us.”
Lavender: “Am I really that transparent?”
Partner: “Probably not to others. But I know you. And, I know that that face you make is usually followed in rapid succession by working yourself into a fit of nervous coughing. I’m reassuring you before you scare all of our neighbors.”
Partner turns to Lavender with watery, red eyes
“I think the spring allergies here are just different enough from the city itself to have lost our acquired tolerance. Can you distract me before I scare the neighbors with my own wheezing?”
Lavender: “We’ve already all broken quarantine pretty spectacularly. We’re going to be out here for a bit. Should I go obtain takeout from whatever is still open?”
Partner: “Add some chocolate. Cadbury’s, specifically. Except, there won’t any Cadbury’s, I bet. They are impossible to find even when we aren’t in a pandemic. I’d almost call this whole thing worth it if you managed to find us Cadbury Creme Eggs.”
Lavender sings on the streets of a virtually empty city
“Germs gaining, place burning
To CVS, I’m turning
Outside we fled, “Much stress”, we said
And so for chocolate, we’re yearning”
Essential Worker looks up at Lavender, properly six feet away, when she finally cannot avoid coughing into her alcohol wipe from the prior smoke exposure and onslaught of allergies after being outside.
Lavender (embarrassed): “I’m not sick. I take my temperature daily. My complex is on fire. I had to evacuate in the middle of a work meeting, and I can’t go back inside yet because we’re only a few units down from the one that is burning. Also, it’s apparently become allergy season while I’ve been stuck inside. Really, it’s not corona, I swear. And, I’m six feet from you, so you’re safe either way. I’m not a jerk. I promise.”
Essential Worker: “I still have my job, unlike so many others, and people have been surprisingly good about staying away from me. I remind myself of that each shift. Sounds like you could use that reassurance today as well. We’re good. I’m guessing you were headed for the junk food?”
Lavender: “Yes. By any chance…”
Lavender and Partner squish through puddles leftover in the hallways from the firemen’s hoses and the sprinklers that went off in the burning unit. Their place smells somewhat like smoke, but not much, thankfully.
Partner: “Well, that was a thing. We can now officially tell everyone that if an entire complex full of strangers can keep social distance during a fire, they can all STFU and just do it too.”
Lavender: “Seriously, I don’t know why people think we’re rude here. I mean, guess what Essential Worker went back and found for me after hearing why I was at CVS?”
Partner: “Is it…???”
Lavender produces Cadbury Creme Eggs obtained from the storeroom
If anyone is worried about what would happen if there is an emergency during a pandemic, rest easier. I have been in a surprising number of apartment (and other) evacuations for someone who has never set her own apartment on fire. Experiencing one during a pandemic is a bit Irony Magnet, but it’s not that much different.
Kudos to all the First Responders who worked quickly and efficiently during the pandemic to ensure that our apartment was not damaged. It doesn’t even smell like smoke anymore thanks to their industrial fans.
Kudos also to that Essential Worker efficiently ensuring access to medicines – and emergency stress-relief chocolate – to our neighborhood during the pandemic.
I was going to post a picture of one of the fire trucks. I wouldn’t blame my readers if they started to doubt whether even my irony magnet powers could conjure a fire during a pandemic. My Partner noted that the silhouettes of city fire trucks can give away locations (that I’m only loosely hiding, but humor me!) You’ll just have to trust me – or email me offline for an artistic pic of what I assume is where the firemen attach the hose to the tanks inside the truck!
Stay safe all!
Need a recap of anything I’m talking about in any post? Check out my Glossary of Terms