Studio Update 9

By: Gabriela Yareliz

I put on perfume, today. I did the dab-dab on the pulse points after my oatmeal breakfast. Yep. I was ready for Friday. I put on some eyeliner, and smiled into the mirror like I was going somewhere. (You know the smile. The one where you tilt the head slightly and purse your lips into a smile like an Olsen twin— icons).

This getting ready was no accident— we had an all staff meeting and second meeting on Zoom, and I knew I would have to click the dreaded video button. I did. (The perfume was just for me because clearly, we aren’t there yet with technology).

Because I miss the South, a good Cracker Barrel and women who drive trucks, I ordered two books by Kristy Woodson Harvey. Those suckers better be good. She is apparently the new voice of Southern fiction. We’ll see about that. (Raises an eyebrow with iced tea in one hand).

Today was a beautiful day. I first noticed it when I had to close my window because of the aforementioned Zoom calls that had to happen. My neighbor decided to start a project around that time. A project that included a hammer. I don’t know what they are doing back there. First I saw him with a plastic bag (sacred treasure in NYC where they are now banned) looking like he was picking something, and then later, weird hammering. He is probably building a bunker back there. I need to get him to sign me the details through the window because you know— social distancing.

Speaking of signing— because I do FaceTime and Zoom like every day, I have taken my ethnic gesture-as-I-talk to a whole new level. I find myself making hand motions as I talk, as if I am the woman next to Governor Cuomo in the press conferences. What is happening? We are losing it.

And because of this fear of losing sanity, it was another prison break day. I went out for a social distancing walk with my handsome boyfriend who brought me a care package because he is so sweet. We walked at a distance toward the blue water and saw that trees had flowers on them, and the daffodils were out. It was a beautiful spring day.

I learned to pay a bill online because let’s face it, I am not going to be standing in a post office to get stamps any time soon (and how old am I, anyway?)

We passed a laundromat selling toilet paper, and we saw (but did not touch) some old pay phones that still remain in the neighborhood. (Those probably have viruses still unknown). And then, during my first walk of the week, the City of New York texts me that I better be home. I was like, “People, I have been home, and now I want to breathe fresh air six feet away from my handsome boyfriend who drove all the way to see me to stand six feet away from me.” They have no chill. I am not walking around with an entourage in the lower east side.

One social distancing walk a week without COVID-19 texts from our panicked mayor. That’s all I am asking for.

Today, I lost a fingernail tip while making ginger water— don’t ask, but it was worth it, and here we are.

We are isolated, my left index fingernail is short as hell, and NYC just texted me, “Stay home as much as you can.”

I will be here, if you need me.

Published by Gabriela Yareliz

Gabriela is a writer, editor and attorney. She loves the art of storytelling, and she is based in NYC.

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