Friday, March 20, 2020

Setting Up My Cocoon

Chiang Mai 
Monday, March 16, 2020

Day One

After traveling from Italy, flying through Frankfurt and Bangkok, and spending nearly 15 hours in what felt like flying Petri dishes--far too close to strangers--I felt radioactive.  My shoes, sitting on the balcony, little time bombs.  For some bizarre reason, I kept remembering Meryl Streep's line from Silkwood:  "Thelma got cooked."   Was I cooked? 

Even if I were not infected, having taken every precaution I could think of, I couldn't say the same for my belongings.  Wearing gloves, I slowly unpacked my suitcase, washing and cleaning everything inside, including clean clothes and packing cubes.  The suitcase was wiped down and placed in a large plastic trash bag.  The shoes--scary in the best of circumstances--will just have to sit tight for at least two weeks, after which I will clean them and bring them inside.

The day after my arrival, my neighbor and a church friend reached out to see whether I needed anything.  I did, of course.

I  needed a few things from the grocery store and some cash.  (I totally forgot to stop at an ATM on the way from the airport.)  My neighbor picked up groceries for me at Tops, including sauce for the Sicilian pasta I brought back.  (Tops delivers, but their website warns that "Delivery availability may be limited during this time.")  She suggested picking up my trash every day and we agreed on a schedule--one more thing I hadn't thought of.

My church friend swung by, picked up my passport and a document from the office, and took them around the corner to Nico at Assist Thai Visa Services, who took care of my TM30 notification

What Next?

Now that I'm settled in, with all of my immediate needs met, I'm turning my attention to how to stay healthy, entertained, and well-informed. 

Before turning in after a long day, I restarted my Hulu subscription, began catching up on my favorite shows, and fell asleep in my La-Z-Boy

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