Maggie2 is here with nowhere to go



I thought she wouldn’t get here until April 2, and she was several days early.

Shipping is erratic in these times.

It was so easy – plugged the one connection between the saddle and the supporting column, put it on the charger, and a couple of hours later everything was charged up and ready.

The next day I hopped on, went down in the elevator, and brought home the mail – just like before.

As if the entire time between Jan. 29 and March 31 had been erased at a single stroke.

But things have changed so much in the interim!

The entire world is now upended – and I have very few places I need to go, as today, Yolo County, CA, told us to close the pool – not even supervised socially distanced hours are to be allowed.

It’s a big loss – and not necessary. I hope they take it back in a while – I don’t see what could possibly contaminate people who don’t even get to use the dressing room, are in chlorinated salt water, and go home to take a shower. Abundance of caution.

But I can run around the corridors at night with the wind in my hair if I want – even in normal times there’s never anyone around after about 9pm.

I could even do it in my pajamas!

When the world returns slowly to some kind of normal

I will already be in position to move around.

Because I am in the vulnerable cohort, older, with chronic illness, and physical disabilities that keep me from walking or standing long or comfortably (which is why I got Maggie in the first place), I assume it will be a long time – on the scale of a year – before we’re even allowed out of quarantine.

Just having beds available again in hospitals will still not make covid-19 easier for us to survive – although it might make it possible in the few cases where a ventilator makes a difference. The illness itself is hard on my group – and most people here are older than we are.

We have to wait for the vaccine – and hope it is effective (the flu shot is around 60% effective, I understand). We have to hope the immunity it – or surviving the disease – confer on people of my condition is long lasting.

The future is not known

We have to hope they learn enough from dealing with this that there isn’t another pandemic for a long time.), and

But maybe they’ll reopen the pools, and limited visitation (maybe for those who are certified survivors (if that makes them unable to infect us), and I’ll resume riding my little steed to the pool. One can hope.

It is a mistake to expect the worst. But it is life-threatening to risk what you know may kill you even with a lot of medical help.

I’m just happy my long hunt for a mobility device is again satisfied – for now.

The original Maggie will be repaired as soon as I can get a control board (assuming that’s the problem) and someone willing to watch the Youtube videos and install the board for me, and a backup now sounds like a very solid idea.

There is still nothing on the market that I find as perfect a solution for me.

Now back to writing NETHERWORLD.

Today was a good day – I made progress into the next scene – all my process still works, plus I added some new strategies from Donald Maass’ Writing 21st Century Fiction – heartily recommended.

I can’t do anything about the world out there – younger healthier people will have to gather the data and do the research and create a safe and effective vaccine – but I’m still excited about where the current scene is going (Rachel will be pleased), and how the end of the Chapter is designed, and how the plot keeps kicking.

That is my job. I’m not bored. I’m not looking for other things to do. This I can.

Wish me luck.



13 thoughts on “Maggie2 is here with nowhere to go

  1. marianallen

    So much good news in this post! I’m glad your folks are (perhaps) erring on the side of caution. I’m happy that you have personal transportation, and will soon have a back-up for her. I delighted you’re working on NETHERWORLD!!! Virtual hugs from me to you.


    1. Alicia Butcher Ehrhardt Post author

      Thank you, my dear. People like you keep me trying – that and my own stubbornness.

      At least I have something to do! Many newly-isolated people haven’t adjusted yet, and they’re having a hard time.

      Unfortunately, when they return to ‘normal,’ most of them won’t remember those of us still stuck here, in their rush.

      And I hope we don’t have too many new cases of what is apparently a post-viral syndrome – it has been speculated that a lot of people won’t fully recover from the insult to their systems. Another reason to minimize contagion until a vaccine is available.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Alicia Butcher Ehrhardt Post author

      I had lost some confidence; I’ll need a bit more riding to get it back.

      The other thing is that Maggie’s seat is about an inch lower (at the bottom of its travel range) than Maggie2’s. I think that shift in the center of gravity of my body is actually significant – so I will put the new one’s seat down, too. It may help.

      Handy being a physicist for some things.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. acflory

    Hope comes in strange packages. I’m so glad you have Maggie2 and your mobility back. Just knowing you have the option of doing something is often enough to stop the feeling of being trapped. I’m also thrilled that you’re writing. I don’t think many people realise how much of an escape writing can be. Onwards. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Lloyd Lofthouse

    “the flu shot is around 60% effective, I understand”

    I have read the same thing but there is a reason for that. The companies that make the flu vaccine have to produce it months early to have it ready in time before the annual flu hits so they have to guess and are wrong 40% of the time.


    1. Alicia Butcher Ehrhardt Post author

      I have no problem with it.

      The flu vaccine every year has saved a lot of lives with an imperfect system.

      I bet some public health officials – and most politicians who aren’t real scientists – thought we had this kind of virus under control.

      They didn’t account for other viruses, or for one this contagious. They were warned.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Lloyd Lofthouse

        From what I have learned, Obama left an emergency system in place to deal with a future pandemic like this one, and Trump got rid of it all, stripping the United States bare of its ability to deal with a virus like this one.

        Meanwhile, Trump keeps thrashing around looking for other countries like China, or individuals that he can blame for what he did. Trumpy Dumpty never admits or accepts blame for anything he or his administration does.


        1. Alicia Butcher Ehrhardt Post author

          We are all appalled, every second, by his majesty’s lack of even the basic underwear.

          But we are not surprised.

          And we know he will 1) never accept responsibility, and 2) look forever for someone he doesn’t like to blame it on.


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