Go to main menu Go to main content Go to footer

Voices ᐋ ᐄᔮᔨᐧᒫᓂᐧᐃᒡ

Isolation blues

BY Sonny Orr Mar 12, 2021

It’s been several days in isolation as I sit here surfing YouTube and trying to figure out what to watch. I’ve eaten about everything on the restaurant menu several times as I try not go stir crazy and jump out the window into the inviting snow outside. 

Yes, I am a victim of today’s circumstances. And just like everyone else in the rest of the world, I must comply with Covid-19 regulations – which I wish we had followed right away last year, but in hindsight we couldn’t do anything about it anyway.

Coming back to earth, I’m watching another YouTube video of SpaceX trying to take off this time. They’re just fueling the spacecraft and I’m hoping that it won’t crash when it comes back down to earth like the last couple of times.

Then I’m wondering who’s that wandering around in the hallway, so I open the door and see the security guards looking my way. I go “oops” and put my mask on.

Then I decide to turn on the TV for change – Coronation Street of all things. I never really watched this venerable soap opera before even though it’s been on since I was a wee boy. It’s probably older than I am. It looks like the people are good actors so now I’m actually enjoying it. 

This quarantine is getting to me. I need some air, but you’re only allowed to go out and have a cigarette with your personal bodyguard and I didn’t buy any cigarettes before I got shipped down here on a medevac. 

This was my first time in an ambulance, and my first time in an air ambulance. It was nice but cramped. Then I spent several hours waiting for my triage in the emergency ward in the Valley of Gold. I had numerous tests done, including three Covid ones, which I found cleaned up my nostrils quite nicely. 

I guess I’m not due for a cold or flu for some time because I have by now ingested numerous medical remedies, none of which contained any alcohol. I guess I can’t complain that much since I haven’t tested positive and should feel lucky that I was treated in time for my malady. 

I’m happy that my isolation is in a nice hotel and the food is good, but I haven’t seen anyone for days. Facebook doesn’t count. I’m developing a British accent talking back to the characters on Coronation Street.

Back home, the temperature is dropping, the wind is rising, and the snowbanks keep drifting higher. I worry about my family’s little ones, thinking that they aren’t as skilled with the shovel as I am. I should have taught them when they were babies to go out there and shovel since it’s a way of life here. 

Some skills need to be taught once, like setting a fishnet or shooting a .22 rifle. Actually, I take that back – just closing the door would be nice since not everyone realizes that a closed door is good enough to keep the cold out.

Just to let everyone know that I’m doing fine. Once again, I did not write a word of this column using a keyboard, instead I dictated my thoughts using a voice-to-text program. I’m hoping my message gets out without too many errors – or that my editors can figure out what I meant to say.

All of you stay healthy. Follow the Covid guidelines and we’ll get out of this mess sooner rather than later.

Signing off from some lonely hotel room halfway home…

LATEST ᒫᐦᒡ ᑎᐹᒋᒧᐧᐃᓐ

Sonny Orr is Cree from Chisasibi, and has been a columnist for the Nation for over 20 years. He regularly pens Rez Notes from the cozy social club in Whapmagoostui where he resides.