Waiting for a return to freedom


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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 22/06/2020 (832 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

I can’t wait for this to be over. The COVID-19 pandemic news seems to be getting better but still I isolate, keep two metres distance and gasp under my mask.

It’s hard to breathe under that cotton, homemade thing I picked up. I haven’t been able to visit my friends at an assisted living residence in the North End and my community centre, where I spend a lot of my time, is shuttered.

My girlfriend is afraid to leave her house because her son has severe asthma and his immune system is compromised. She wants to protect him.

So I walk alone and duck off the sidewalk when I see someone coming. I feel like a pariah when they give me those baleful looks. Where are all the smiling hellos I used to get?

I understand that people are nervous. Myself — I only feel safe when closeted in my apartment. But I’m starting to climb the walls. There must be something useful and fulfilling I can do. I’m up-to-date on my daily chores and if I look at another overstuffed drawer I’m going to scream. Some of us are just hoarders.

Just a minute — baking used to be fun. Maybe I should make something sweet and delicious.

Then the kids and grands might be tempted to visit. I’ll offer them a meal and a fantastic dessert. I hate eating alone and on the TV they mentioned that groups of 10 are allowed.

Probably only three will show up.

I save recipes. There should be something good in my to-do list.

Ah — apple strudel! I bought a bag of those tangy green apples a few weeks ago. That would be a good way to use them up.

All of a sudden I feel energized. I’m on a mission. I drag out the heavy bag of flour and begin. The dough is so rich. This should taste scrumptious. The apples are peeled and ready. I work the dough on a floured surface and neatly arrange the filling along one side. I begin to roll. Why is the dough so sticky? OMG!

Flummoxed, I look at the recipe.

Oh — the dough had to be chilled four hours in the fridge. What am I going to do with this mess now?

Well, you know what? When handed lemons (or in this case, apples), make lemonade.

I take off the sliced fruit, scrape up the dough and add a bit more flour and start over. The outcome is far from perfect. The rolls look as if a child has been playing with them. I grit my teeth and throw it into the oven.

You know what? Dough is very forgiving. It bakes up golden and smells fantastic. Yummy!

The kids loved it warm, with lots of ice cream. I wonder what I should do next. This time I’m going to read the whole recipe, down to the last word. No more surprises.

I think I’ll make cinnamon buns. I’ve always wanted to use yeast. I hear kneading dough is very therapeutic.

Freda Glow is a community correspondent for the North End.

Freda Glow

Freda Glow
North End community correspondent

Freda Glow is a community correspondent for the North End.

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