cute girl in medical mask wearing mask on teddy bear during pandemic
Photo by Gustavo Fring on


At the end of almost every yoga class I’ve taken, we end by raising our hands into prayer position and saying “namaste.” “Namaste” means “the divine light in me salutes the divine light in you.” Or as one of my teachers translates it, “the best part of me salutes the best part of you.”

“Namaske” is a play on that. I wish I had thought of it first. Yes, I saw it on a meme getting circulated on social media. It’s a playful reminder to wear a face covering to prevent the spread of this accused plague.

Unfortunately, some people, no matter how gently an idea is presented, no matter the science and facts behind it, either do not or will not get it. Like the couple in the oversized pickup truck speeding up the road from the boat ramp at the park yesterday.

The driver looked right at me and started laughing, as did the passenger, who took it upon herself to yell, “You don’t need a mask outside!” as they sped off to their next destination.

Um, Madam, I beg to differ.

While I do take down my scarf or mask if I’m on a back trail with a reasonably low chance of running into a fellow walker, I keep it on if  I am near a parking lot, a picnic area, or a road with foot or automotive traffic. Why? I do not want to inadvertently pass it along to anyone. Other park patrons, including small children, may not be paying attention to social distancing guidelines. I don’t want to pass it to them and then risk them getting sick or passing it along to vulnerable relatives or friends.

I also really do not want to bring it home to Hubby. His age alone (in the neighborhood of 65) puts him in a risk group. Actually, between  diabetes, COPD, asthma, cardiovascular issues, and age my entire family and several close friends can place chips on the COVID-19 bingo card.

In addition, I know at least three and possibly four people who have had COVID-19. The coughs, the aches, the misery they described is not something I would wish on anyone. I also know someone who was on a ventilator (Hubby’s brother in law, the one who died of cancer anyway eighteen months ago) and that sounded like a new frontier in hell. I would never want anyone to go through that, especially since there’s only a 20% survival rate for vented patients.

Not my idea of a good time. I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. Period.

If I made you laugh while holding up my side of the social contract, so be it. I will rest easily knowing that I fulfilled my civic duty twice over.


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