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The Last Days with COVID-19 and the First Run After

Still leaving the remaining odds and ends from July for some other time, I’ll start this post right from the end of the one about getting COVID-19, so with the early hours of August 6, when I used the new cutting board for the first time, after having purchased one just before the symptoms appeared, since dad had cracked the old one almost completely in two. However, that new one was already badly warped at that point, so at night I looked up why that happens and how to fix it and actually managed to do so since then. Either way, that night I started eating dinner at 3:05 AM and finished at 3:45 AM. But the problem was that I was feeling something in my chest again, though it was in the upper left side, not that usual spot, on the right, and after getting up I kept having to cough to spit. Not that there was much to spit out, but my body was determined to get rid of it.
Otherwise, dad went to my mother that day after all, to bring her some things, including a test. It didn’t strike me as a good idea for him to go there when he refused to test himself, but at least the result was negative at that point, even though she was saying that she wasn’t feeling well at the time, and it does seem that things have gotten somewhat better since then, and I haven’t heard anything about my grandmother getting worse, so maybe they avoided it after all. On the other hand, in the evening I had to rush to the toilet again and things were, shall we say, quite explosive, and after I was done for the moment it still felt like there was more there. I held it until I went to bed, since I was shaking and felt weak and doing that again was likely to make things worse, but had to go again when I woke up to pee, though at least at that point it wasn’t that bad anymore.

Moving on to August 8, when I came out of the bathroom I felt a strange smell that made me think of overheated electronics, and I kept feeling it whenever I got on the hallway, coming from another room. But I couldn’t be sure, especially since I was wearing a mask, so I asked dad when he came back whether he smelled anything, but he said that he didn’t and just dismissed my concerns, as usual. On the other hand, it was the last day of the prescribed treatment, with the exception of the antibiotics, which had been prescribed only for five days, so I had finished taking those two days earlier… And what worried me was that, after having gotten better by then, my throat seemed to be getting a little sore again.

The plan for August 9 was to do another quick test and if it’ll be negative go for a jog, without timing myself and preferably on another route, so I’ll be less tempted to actually run. However, it was positive, and while the plan for that situation was to skip jogging but go out anyway, since I was legally permitted to do so since August 6 and was going to wear an FFP2 mask as well, I was so depressed after seeing that result that I gave up on that idea, leaving it for the next day.
When dad got back, I told him to ask the doctors what to do in that situation and he said that he sent messages to both of them, but neither answered, and he said that he thought that I should continue the treatment at least for that day. I didn’t want to, but eventually followed his advice, taking the first pills in the evening, which meant taking all of them within eight hours or so. But I got back to just making one tea, and otherwise just felt like curling in a ball, didn’t want to eat or drink, didn’t brush my teeth during the day… Didn’t even really want to breathe… But I nevertheless made mamaliga after dad left… And banged my head against the corner of the kitchen window. I knew that it was there and was sure that I was avoiding it as I was getting up, and also that I was moving very slowly, so I was completely surprised when I hit it, and again when I realized how hard, and there was some blood… And then I also cut a finger a little in the can of sardines that I put in the mamaliga. But at least I shaved at night, to force myself to at least go out the following evening.

At one point during the morning of August 10, my body decided to, shall we say, clean the plumbing. It’s been a long time since that happened… Either way, some time later, as I was sort of drifting back to sleep after waking up again when dad left, he woke me yet again, with an SMS, letting me know that one of the doctors, that friend of his, had finally replied and said that I should stop the treatment if the symptoms are gone and to try another test Friday or Saturday, so on August 12 or 13, which actually improved my state of mind significantly.
I went out at 7:10 PM, obviously with an FFP2 mask. I took the recyclables and a little trash, dropping off the trash in a bin and then going past this nearby store and straight to the recycling bin in order to also drop off the recyclables. Then I returned to that store and bought cabbage, after dad had bought himself one the day before and told me the price, which was lower than the price of cabbage at the hypermarkets that had it on sale those days, and what was more surprising was that it was also really good, the cabbage from this store tending to be rather bad most of the time. Either way, I could and likely should have dropped off the cabbage before continuing to Penny, especially since I had two of them, but I didn’t, so after very quickly checking two other stores I got there, put the cabbage in a cabinet and got what I wanted for dad. I couldn’t find the plums that were supposed to be on sale and which I had considered getting for myself, but that turned out to be a good thing.
I struggled to carry everything back, and the total weight was 18 kg, but I nevertheless got back here a little before 8:35 PM, dropped off the purchases and left again five minutes later, going straight to Kaufland. Once there, I peed and washed my hands, walked in the store at 9:10 PM… But saw no bakery discounts, and just a low discount for green onions, so I didn’t get any. But there was a good evening discount for the handful of plums that were left, so I picked those that weren’t too bad. And nectarines also had an evening discount, and while most were really bad, I found four somewhat better ones and grabbed those as well, for my mother. On the other hand, not many watermelons were left and, with the exception of a couple of tiny but damaged ones, they were all huge. But I checked those that didn’t seem completely impossible to carry and found one, weighing just over ten kilograms, that seemed good enough, so I got that as well. And then the bakery discounts finally appeared and I also got a few things from there, just quickly grabbing the last bread of that kind with my hands even though they were obviously dirty before using those tools for the other things. Then again, those tools are probably dirtier than my hands were even at that point. Either way, after grabbing a few more things I went to the self-checkout and the time on the receipt was 10:02 PM, but I’m pretty sure that I started using it just before 10 PM, because it took me a while to scan the watermelon.
The thing is that starting to scan just before 10 PM might have made a difference, because the closing time had changed to 11 PM for that location. I hadn’t noticed that, and after arranging the purchases in the bags and backpack and stopping again just after walking out in order to try to arrange a few things a little better, I was about to correct the guy who was saying that the store closed at 11 PM as he walked past me when I realized that there had been no announcement and turned to look at the sign, seeing that the hours had indeed changed. So some discounts might have increased at 10 PM, but I thought that I had to rush, not that I should have waited just a little longer.
Either way, I was walking away at 10:10 PM and only made it back here just before 11 PM, having once again carried a total of 18 kg but struggling even more because of that watermelon, since it was a single item that was so heavy and there was no way to balance the weight. After that, I started eating one of the sweet pastries which I had grabbed and lunch at 12:15 AM and finally went to shower at 12:45 AM. That was the first shower in five days, and I had actually been noticing that I smelled while I was out, which was rather embarrassing. But I still had plenty of things to do after getting back to the kitchen, at 1:30 AM, so it was 3:40 AM when I started eating dinner, finishing at 4:30 AM and getting in bed at 5:20 AM. My arms and back were hurting and my knees were actually bruised as a result of the way in which I had carried that watermelon.

Since August 13 was the last day when I could ask for a refund for Emsisoft Anti-Malware, before making a final decision to risk it and not do that I wanted to be really sure that I could restore it to how it worked before I allowed the license to expire before renewing it and it reverted to default settings, including connecting to the workspace. I had tested this on July 26, after finding out how to restore on a different drive, but I obviously also made another backup first, just in case something would go wrong. Then, on August 12, I finally restored from the backup made a month earlier properly, replacing the current system installation, after first setting the date back to July 14, so the old license would seem to still be valid before updating. Since I didn’t want to have any MilkyWay@home work units running when I made the change, I suspended the remaining ones when I got up, one actually being completed right at that moment, so just one CPU core was still in use for 16 minutes, since that was how long it took for the other one to also be finished. And then four more minutes passed before I turned off the computer, accidentally doing so instead of just rebooting. Either way, one hour and 24 minutes more passed before I was done and things seemed to be working well enough for me to allow BOINC to resume working.
As for how it actually went, I formatted the system partitions, then restored from the backup, then checked all the partitions that I’m actually using, then rebooted and updated Emsisoft Anti-Malware, so it’d see that the license had been extended. Then I set the drive letters back to what they should be, the additional primary partition resulting from that earlier test having caused the restored installation to change them. After that, I rebooted again and changed the date back to the current one in the BIOS… But, for some reason, though it hadn’t indicated any problem the first time, when the system started again both the icon and the tooltip in the notification area were showing that BOINC was reconnecting to client, though I allowed it to resume working and it did so without reporting any problems. So I rebooted one more time, just in case, and BOINC no longer displayed any problem in the notification area either… But the software for my UPS did. It had seemed fine the first two times, but at that point it was reporting that the data service was not running, and indeed the process wasn’t in the list and there was an error in the system logs stating that the service hadn’t responded within 30 seconds and timed out… Even though the data that’s normally reported seemed to be displayed when I checked, so I’m not sure what data is actually handled by that service. But I started the service manually and everything seemed fine after that… Though I’m yet to reboot again, worried that something else may decide to cause problems when I’ll do so.

Moving on to August 13, I got up when the alarm rang, at 9:45 AM, to watch the Formula E race, and also did another quick test, and it was negative! So I had the usual stuff plus almonds, again with some expired “digestive” biscuits, with added honey, as the sweet thing, put on the full running gear, which as of that day included the t-shirt from the 2019 half marathon, after Liza damaged the one I’ve been wearing all this time, from the first one, from 2016, took some things in the pocket of my tights, unfortunately wasted time on the toilet twice after getting back to the bathroom and my body apparently not liking the change even though the small bathroom is awful, and eventually went out, at 2:15 PM, when the reported temperature was about 30°C, supposed to hold steady… Though our weather service listed 30°C at the two points that are at the outskirts and 33°C at the one that usually tells the temperature towards the center, so it might have gotten a little hotter if that mass of air came this way, as the wind direction seemed to indicate. In addition, I was really sleepy.
The time was 51:24.54, with sector times of 4:31, 5:27, 6:13, 4:47, 5:28, 6:21, 4:57, 5:24, 6:17 and 1:59.22, making for lap times of 16:11, 16:36 and 16:38. Even looking at the exact times, not to mention memorizing them, obviously had no point. Then again, the original plan had, after all, been to just jog the first time, without timing at all, but that plan had assumed that I’ll get a negative test result on August 9, so I’ll be able to jog then and then actually run on August 12. But since I only tested myself again that day, I went directly for a run, albeit controlling the pace and thinking of that last run before being hospitalized as the ideal target time but being willing to accept even just staying under 54 minutes if I had to. And I was aiming for about 4:45 on the first sector, so when I saw that I was significantly faster I made even more of a point of slowing down on sector two. Then, from sector three of lap one, I started thinking of staying under 52 minutes and mostly listened to my body, neither pushing nor holding back anymore, just maintaining a pace that wasn’t tiring. But I had told myself on the first lap that I’ll try to sprint on the long straight of sector two of lap three if I’ll be able to, and by the time I got to that point I had decided to actually run, pushing a little, albeit still not too much, for the last 2.5 km, so starting a little after the start of sector two of lap three. Sadly, you can’t exactly tell from the times, so I couldn’t do much more than that at that point. But at least the time was under 51:30, and I also managed to cover the final sector in just under two minutes even though I really doubted that I’ll be able to do it.
It was mostly sunny and really burning when I wasn’t in the shade, clouds only bringing some relief at the end, starting on the later part of sector three of lap three. While I no longer felt it on the final sector, towards the end of lap three there was some wind as well, the cooling effect being more important than the fact that I also had to fight it a little. On the other hand, even though it was Saturday, there were no notable problems caused by people, so I just had to occasionally weave or go the long way around. But I was still feeling the effects of having carried that watermelon, and there were also some warnings from my right knee on sectors two and three of lap one, which pretty much went away on sectors one and two of lap two, but returned in force on sector three of lap two, the knee rather hurting and that hip also starting to give some warnings, and I also felt the need to snap my back and couldn’t quite do it. That knee went back to just giving warnings early on lap three, but from sector two of lap three, when I tried to push a little, my left knee and hip also started giving some warnings, though at least those never got worse. And I never felt out of breath or anything of the sort, but I was feeling tired, at first even somewhat sleepy, and when I tried to push a little, on those final 2.5 km, I just couldn’t be faster.

The original plan for this post was to leave the odds and ends for another time and cover the first three runs after that negative test, since I ran twice this week and, after postponing it already, I absolutely need to cover a half marathon distance next week. But I realized that I’ll end up with too much left to add later and would have probably also referred to things that I’d have been yet to write about too many times, so I decided to do it like this instead… And, since I went out this evening as well, I ended up being unable to even finish writing about August 13, what I posted before midnight ending with the part about the run and even this paragraph being added a few minutes later. But that was, after all, the important part, and Monday evening I edited the post in order to add the part about the rest of that day.

Back to August 13, after the run I put my mask on and went to that Carrefour, getting a number of things, including some chocolate for dad, since that was one of the categories of products that they were giving those vouchers for then. However, if at first I was thinking of going right back in and grabbing one more thing in order to actually get the discount right away, I eventually decided against it and went to the farmers’ market, mainly looking for apples. However, most were “summer apples”, which tend to be quite sour, and not even those were quite cheap enough, while the other kinds were really expensive and only sold by a few. But I spotted one guy selling particularly large bundles of green onions surprisingly cheaply, so I got two. Then, after taking some time to pick some fruit from a tree on the way back, I got back here at 5:15 PM.
After eating lunch, I cleaned my room a little and asked dad whether we had another blanket that I could replace the one that’s on my bed with, to also wash that, and he took one out. It was in a bag, so I didn’t really look at it, just telling him to leave it there, the bed being something that I was going to deal with after getting back, since even so I only managed to go back out a few minutes before 9 PM and get to Penny a little before 9:15 PM. And I couldn’t find more water for dad, but I did get everything else, including one product that still had the full price listed even though it was discounted, so I scanned it to make sure. Either way, the cashier seemed fed up, upset, kept telling the guard that she won’t do anything anymore, but there were no problems while she checked me out, the only thing that I noticed being that the guard tapped my backpack after I paid, so I told him that I just had bags in there.
After taking some time to put some of the purchases in the backpack and the rest in a bag, I rushed to Kaufland, expecting that location to also be open until 11 PM, so I was in fact rushing to also have a quick look in Carrefour before that closed, meaning to return to Kaufland after that. However, the sign still listed 10 PM as closing time for that Kaufland, so I rushed in, threw my things in a cabinet, washed my hands and got in at 9:45 PM, rushing to the bakery area and grabbing a few things. Then I saw plenty of evening discounts for vegetables, but first got a beet, even though those weren’t discounted, then used the scales to find the price of onions, since there were stacks of crates but no price label, so they were probably about to be discarded. Still, even though most did look bad, after digging through the crates I managed to find a handful of passable ones, then I grabbed some lettuce with root and was searching through the tomatoes, trying to quickly find some that were still good enough, when it was announced that the store had closed… And mere seconds later a guy got my attention, waved his hands in front of me and pointed insistently to his watch, so I was left with the four tomatoes that I had grabbed until then and dashed to the scales, then only dared to have a very quick look at the non-refrigerated expiring products before rushing to the self-checkout, the time on the receipt being seconds before 10:05 PM. And that guy left right behind me, after I checked out, and even though he wasn’t wearing their uniform or anything else that’d obviously indicate him as an employee, he was saying goodbye to the others, so maybe he was a manager or something like that. Then I retrieved my things from the cabinet, arranged everything in the backpack and bag and was walking away a little after 10:10 PM, getting back here at 10:40 PM.
After seeing that dad hadn’t taken a bag with some trash out and dashing out the door again in order to do so, I washed what he had left… And noticed that the frozen spinach had leaked, and it had been in the backpack, pressed against my back, so the back of my t-shirt was stained green and I washed it a little and then hung it and the backpack to dry in the kitchen. Then I ate watermelon and a sweet pastry that I already had, leaving the one grabbed that evening for another time, changed my sheets… And found that the blanket taken out by dad wasn’t just not the one which had been on my bed before, but also full of cat hair, so I stuffed it back in the bag and looked for that other one, but when I saw that it wasn’t in a bag or protected in any other way I decided to leave it there and not use a blanket for a while, putting the sheet directly on the mattress, since I still threw the blanket that was there straight into the washing machine, putting the teddy bear in there along with it. I couldn’t wash them then and dad wasn’t going to let me wash them during the following two days either, one being Sunday and the other a religious holiday, but the bag in which I placed the clothes worn during that period was full and there was no other place to put them. At that point I just threw my belt in the sink, but before going to bed I washed it, then hung it in the kitchen to dry.
Since I mentioned that bag, I also put the towel in it before going to shower, being certain that the other one had been washed… Only to go to the balcony and only find my boxers still there, dad having gathered everything else, later saying that he just took all the briefs even though I had told him that my one pair should also be among what was washed and that he thought that my towel was also his, even though his towels are small, the only larger one being very different and hanging on the bathroom door. The next day, when he took out the briefs so I’ll be able to find mine and also told me that my towel was on his nightstand, right on top, so Liza could have sat right on it as well, I put both right back in the laundry basket, but at that point I didn’t even know where that towel was, so I’d have had a real problem if I wouldn’t have received that other one after the Dream Trek. But I did have that one, so I made do with it, even if it’s rather small, finally going to the bathroom at 12:50 AM, to use the toilet and then shower. I was back in the kitchen at 1:55 AM, managed to start eating dinner at 3:10 AM and finished just before 3:50 AM. And I took another pill before going to bed, just in case.


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