Lockdown in Paradise (A short, Short Story)
‘Hurry up girl … it’s gonna rain and you know what Im like when I get wet!’
Perdy gave the look, that tolerance mixed with the yeah right look. She scoffed her biscuits, other than a solitary morsel that had hidden under the mat.
As I opened the back door, she slurped from her bowl, then followed me down the steps, barking at knowledgeable sparrows lined up on the garage roof watching our moves. They were late comers; their mates had already swooped down on the chook feed, claiming the leftovers from their bigger relations. I opened the gate, trying to stop the inevitable clank as it shut behind us. I didn’t want to wake the neighbours.
A minute later we headed along the road. As usual, I let Perdy decide which way … right or left. She chose by sniffing the air and whatever Jack Russells employ to motivate their steroid boosted energy.
‘Looks like it’s Tararu North then.’
We were not alone. Several couples, all appropriately spaced, ambled towards us. I knew them from previous walks, but this was different. There would be no stopping, chatting, with Perdy sitting patiently at my feet receiving the occasional pat, then sometimes jumping up, seeking a head pat. I shortened her lead and gave the walkers a wide berth. They nodded politely, smiling as we drifted past them.
‘Coping OK?’ a tall women inquired.
‘Yeah … getting used to it … forget what day it is sometimes, though.’
‘We just say … today is today, and we’ll worry about tomorrow if it comes,’ she replied sagely.
A Tui called to us from a tree behind the wall of the retirement village. Its dulcet tones cut through the morning air.
‘She doesn’t care about the virus, eh girl,’ I replied. ‘Let’s hit the beach.’