To go chronologically, I again saw no visits in either view on March 27, and the next day I exchanged some messages with Alexandra again, after close to three months. That went badly though, but at least she was finally honest when it comes to what she thinks of me, most of it being accurate. With the exception of one thing, however, I don’t see those things as accusations, and in fact for the most part we’re talking of things I’m accusing others of not doing, or of doing those she “accused” me of not doing. And we did have talks about the general ideas before, but now the stress of the current situation, plus the lack of recent contact, likely got things one step further. Of course, I don’t see any of it as a bad enough issue and I’ll try to get another feel of the situation at some later point, assuming she won’t decide to block me by then, but if things will stay like this, so be it. It’s not like I expect to stay in touch with anyone for any significant length of time without being at each other’s throats, after all.
Monday I ran again, using a route I put together around this area, since all parks have been closed and, while people are still allowed to go out for “individual physical activity”, it must be done “near home”. The first version had two kilometers, so I’d be able to use it and do full laps for both ten and 16, but then, keeping the most distant point where it was, some 600 meters from here, I extended it to two and a half kilometers and actually added the one nicer bit, small as it is, while doing so. The total distance may be slightly longer because of the exact path I have to take and the parked cars I need to go around, there are three spots where I stop and turn around, which obviously messes up any pace, and it’s all on sidewalks and narrow streets and alleys, meaning that I also have to watch for passing cars and possibly step aside to make way. And I’m also running with the mask on, and with the regular shoes and, so far, the old running pants. And this first time I also had a t-shirt I’m wearing inside on, though the second time I did put the running t-shirt on. And I also carried a bag with bags and the other stuff needed, since I went to buy some things right after the run, to get it all done in one day and fill just one of those papers for everything… Not that anybody stopped me to ask for it so far.
Getting back to Monday, with old people supposed to only be allowed outside between 11 AM and 1 PM and stores likely to get more crowded again after 5 PM, I had the alarm wake me up at 11 AM, though I had woken up a few times before that. Then I had the usual stuff, the cereals being another one of those free servings, and a protein bar as something sweet. I think I also had almonds, but I was trying to remember that after getting back and just couldn’t. Went out at 1:10 PM, so when, according to the new regulations, old people should have returned inside, and also just after seeing the new numbers, since those are presented at 1 PM each day. The reported temperature was up to 20°C and it was sunny, but also windy. It got somewhat better later, but there were still some places where the wind was a problem all the way to the end, and on the first lap it kept threatening to blow my cap off.
The time was 51:15.87, and while I am considering fixing a point for an intermediate time on each lap, so far I didn’t, so I just have lap times, which were 12:55.60, 12:38 (12:37.55), 12:54.17 and 12:48.55. That would have been awful through the park, but under those circumstances I’d have taken anything under 55 minutes, so it was actually surprisingly good, especially since it was the first time and I was worried I won’t even remember the route properly. That proved to not be a problem, but I definitely lacked confidence, both in my knowledge of the route and my ability to push with the mask on, feeling that I wasn’t getting enough air and also that what I was breathing out was staying in front of my nose and making it even harder to get oxygen in. In addition, just after starting I had to slow in order to allow a couple of people to come out of this nearby store, then for passing cars on that street that ends with the most distant point on all laps bar the second, and on lap three, on that same street, I actually had to stop for a moment and stand aside to let a car pass. Plus that I obviously have to slow down a little when I cross this other street, and also slowed both times I passed by this nearby store on lap four, thinking to quickly step inside and check the price of onions but deciding against it since there was another customer there both times. But mainly it was the lack of optimization that was the problem, not knowing the exact paths to take, where to use the sidewalk, where to use the street, which parts are more important, where to push more, how to handle those 180° turns… I was more confident on lap four, pushing more towards the end, after realizing I hadn’t been so focused on just remembering the route anymore and didn’t mess anything up.
Walked to this Kaufland and Carrefour after that, obviously needing to go around that park and the area around the stadium now. First checked the prices at Kaufland and got some of those treats for Liza, just so I won’t walk out without any products, though I had to wait for a while for one of the self-checkout machines accepting cash to free up in order to do so. I was also looking for bread, but they didn’t have any more of that one kind that I may buy from there, and then Carrefour didn’t seem to have any of the ones I’d get from there either. There was one I had identified as a potential option of last resort last time, despite being mostly made out of white flour and being too expensive for something like that, but while at least they still had some of that, it was only sliced… And it seems to be their policy to slice everything now, or at least everything not bought very quickly, since as I was looking in that area an employee came and carried away all the bread of another kind, saying that it was the last kind she had to slice, since she had done all the others already. Not that it makes any sense to no longer slice bread if the customer asks, supposedly to reduce the risk of contamination, but have employees take the bread out of the bag, slice it without the customer watching, then put it back…
Either way, just as I was wondering what to do, I noticed that the bio (organic) bread was not sliced, so I grabbed two of those, despite the fact that white flour is second on the list, after rye flour, it even contains sugar, which I only noticed after I got back here, and the price for the same weight is almost double that of that whole wheat one from Auchan that I used to get, and which I’ve mostly given up on as they kept increasing its price. It is very fluffy though, so I thought I’ll just be able to make do with half the amount, in terms of weight, if I’ll be even more careful to slice it very, very thinly, and it worked. So I could then return to Kaufland, get everything I wanted from there and get back here just a little after 5 PM. Ate a banana then, out of those purchased for dad.
Yesterday I again had the alarm wake me up at 11 AM and had the usual stuff, the cereals being another one of those free servings but the sweet thing actually being a return to what really meant the usual stuff for a long time, since I had the last of those wheat things, which had been here for months, with jam on them. This time I’m certain I also had almonds though. But I just wasted time on the toilet, so it was a good thing that didn’t end up being a problem after I went out, at 1:15 PM. Wore the old running pants and regular shoes again, but did take the running t-shirt this time. Also took the jacket, however, tying it around my waist while I ran. Didn’t put the stuff I took with me in it though, most of it still being in the bag I carried in my hands and the papers in a pocket of my pants, which caused me to worry that something may fly out and check many times. The forecast I had seen the day before listed a high around 16°C, but when I asked dad to check when I went out, he said the reported temperature was 13°C at that point, and I also still felt some wind in some places.
I was only aiming to get under 50 minutes again, and after the first lap it didn’t exactly seem likely, but now I’m thinking that I may even have a chance to get under 48 even under these circumstances and on this route. There’s still a long way to go, but now the time was 49:15.24, with lap times of 12:39.55, 12:00 (11:59.73), 12:49.54 and 11:47 (11:46.42). Large differences between laps, and while on the first lap I had to go slowly around a car shortly after starting and then step aside and actually wait for a moment to let another one pass, and was also careful not to get the route wrong, I have a much harder time explaining that lap three time. Yes, I slowed for two cars that were ahead of me at one point, but that was only for a few seconds, so I guess I was just slow for some reason without really realizing it, while on laps two and four I pushed, even if at the start of lap four I almost stopped for a bit, since I couldn’t see the time well while running in such bright light. The mask didn’t bother me that much anymore either; I’m starting to get used to breathing with it on to some extent. My left ankle did start to bother me at the end of lap three, continuing to do so even after the run, until I got back, and halfway through lap four my right knee gave me a few warnings as well, though that was much less noticeable.
After I was done, I put the jacket on and walked to that other Kaufland, so I could also go to that pet shop first, getting the cat food that dad will take to my grandmother’s when he’ll next go there, as that’s now cheaper there, after the price increased quite a lot everywhere else. Then I got the other things on dad’s list from Kaufland, but the canned mushrooms were a problem. No longer being on sale, the listed price was 25% more than last time, which was normal, but the price I saw when I got to the self-checkout was actually even higher. Since a lot of cans were stacked on the central alley and they had a larger price label, I didn’t even check the price before going there, assuming that they’ll at least be careful with those, but noticing that and going back because of it also meant I could grab one last thing from dad’s list which I had forgotten about. Then I looked for an employee for a while, saw no point in trying to approach any of those who were nearby, since they were dealing with completely different products, and eventually went to the information desk, the employee who was there coming with me to check after I told her what was wrong. Told her when we got there that it’s an even bigger problem because it’s something like that, not just a little label on a shelf, and she made a gesture that seemed to indicate that I was quite right, then called someone and told them they had a problem. Stayed around the area for a while longer, and also checked the price again, but of course they fixed it by changing the label, not the price, which means I wouldn’t have bought the cans if they’d have been for me. But they were for dad and he’d have likely complained if I’d have returned without them, so I got them anyway.
A loud alarm started ringing while I was waiting to see what they’ll do, obviously making people look around anxiously, especially considering the circumstances, since there was no announcement until minutes later. Actually, there was no announcement at all, but a message that the person with the master key should go somewhere, which led me to assume that the alarm had something to do with that. It was ringing again as I left though, after using the self-checkout again, and having the coins spill through a tear in the bag I had placed them in. The smaller ones stayed around me and I could get them back right away, but the 0.50 RON one rolled away, a guy picking it up just as I was reaching for it and handing it back after having a good look and asking whether it was mine.
Kept going after that, also walking to that Auchan… And not finding the food for Liza. Actually, quite a few kinds of cat food were missing, just the empty boxes being left on the shelves, and I asked an employee whether they still had any and she said they didn’t, though the site listed it as being in stock there when I checked before leaving and still did so when I could get on-line again last evening. But at least I found a kind of bread I wanted, unsliced, though the fact that the bags were open, the labels not being used to close them, struck me as strange under the current circumstances. It’s something that always makes me uneasy, and if I have a choice I tend to avoid bread that’s left like that where anyone can touch it, so I even sent them a message about it last evening, but now I didn’t have a choice and these days I’m first putting it in the microwave for a couple of minutes anyway, so it should be fine.
There was quite a line when I got to the checkout, and the one I was waiting for closed when the person ahead of me got there, and I was slower to react than the two behind me when she passed on that information, so they moved to another one which had just opened before me, though one turned to look, said that I was ahead of him and allowed me ahead again. I just had that bread anyway, though it took a little longer because Auchan doesn’t have cabinets to put things in and I had to have the guard put my stuff in a sealed bag and then, having so many things in there, the cashier asked me to hand it to her and she checked whether the bag was still sealed. Considering all the stuff that was in it, it’d have been very likely to tear, so I was particularly careful with it, not wanting to find out what’d have happened if it would have torn… I mean, I did have receipts for everything, and the coffee and mushrooms were obviously from Kaufland, being their store brand, but all those little cans of cat food would have likely been suspicious despite matching the receipt from the pet shop, since Auchan does still have those in stock as well.
Either way, the real problem appeared after I used the machine to pay. I meant to put the receipt in the bag with the bread, then remembered I’ll need it to get out… And I’m not sure what I did after that, whether I moved my hand away from the bag but still let go, tried to stuff it in a pocket and either missed or had it fall out due to the empty bags that were in that pocket, or held it in my hand for a moment but then my brain confused what I meant to do with what I actually did and I let go without realizing it. What’s certain is that I got to the gate and had no receipt to scan, so I couldn’t get out. Started checking the bag and pockets, then went back to the machine I had used, also grabbing a 0.50 RON coin I had already seen on the floor but had ignored at first. Looked around that machine, stepped back and went carefully through the bag and all my pockets, even shook the bags the bread came in, but still couldn’t find it. The guard did walk up to me while I did that, though only to have a look and then walk away again. But I did finally manage to find the receipt, after walking back to the gate and looking carefully on the floor, spotting it somewhere on the way. Couldn’t use it to leave though, probably because it was too old by then, their system timing out after mere minutes, but the guard allowed me to follow another customer out without checking anything.
Got back here at 5:05 PM, again without having my papers checked by anyone, though I had admittedly avoided major roads when possible, mostly sticking to alleys and little streets between buildings. Ate another banana after showering, but that one didn’t agree with me so well, so I’ll give up on trying this again now, especially since there’s no need to try to get myself used to them for the race, which was postponed for September. On the other hand, I will need to switch to another security product if I’m to continue trying them, this trial of ESET Antivirus expiring while I was out, though it still seems to work as long as I don’t let it update again. The thing is that, while it remains the one I’m most interested in out of what’s available at the moment and it didn’t cause Vivaldi to stop loading pages and possibly refuse to start again this time around, explorer.exe froze again last evening, again when I had several tabs open in Vivaldi. Far fewer than last time though, and I don’t think memory was the problem, so I’m wondering if this isn’t the new problem the possible incompatibility between these two somehow causes. And now I couldn’t reboot either, since I doubt it’d also continue to work after a reboot when the trial is already over, but I could get all the notification area icons back by manually restarting the programs leaving the missing ones, only also forcing one of them to close before doing so. There might have been a double middle click after that as well, but I’m not exactly certain.