When I told my friends that I got my second “shot,” I was so excited that I felt as if I had won the lottery!
During this crazy world we are living in, everyone I know only talks about two things: The weather and the COVID-19 vaccine.
“Did you get yours yet?”
“Is it your first or your second shot?”
“Where did you get it? Why there?”
“How did you get a date?”
After I got my first shot on January 15, I received a card which had the Moderna number on one side, and the date to return for my second shot on the back. I hadn’t taken the card too seriously—in fact, I had left it in a pile of papers.
I had no idea that card was to be my passport to the world. Fortunately, I had saved it!
I found it and returned to the Bronx high school where I got my first shot and I assumed I was to get my second shot.
While most of my friends who had received their first shot were sent reminder, after reminder, after reminder, I hadn’t received any calls or emails to remind me of my February 12 appointment. I just appeared on what I assumed was my designated day. No one has to remind me if I have a date!
While waiting in a short line outside the school, a volunteer came over to register me. I learned that the kind man is a teacher who is volunteering at the center and is part of the 60 percent of the workers who are volunteering.
He looked up my name and said I was not listed! But I didn’t panic because I had my “magic” card with me. On that card was written that I had received my first shot and had a February 12 appointment for the second shot.
After a long discussion with the volunteer, who had been searching frantically for my name, I suggested he call a supervisor. So, I waited in line, shivering in the freezing cold. I was without socks or especially warm clothing as I went for glamour instead, wearing a wrap with a fur collar and cuffs. That proved to be a poor choice, but last time I waited only a minute on line in the cold and thought it would be the same this time.
Finally my volunteer brought over a supervisor, who instantly looked at my card and said “make this woman a drop in.” I asked if anyone can come for a “drop-in” and the woman, dressed in snow boots and a heavy jacket said, “No,” telling me that I was okay because I had to proof that I already received the first shot.
The line outside the huge school moved quickly once I was considered “qualified” to receive the second shot. I never felt so cozy after moving from the frigid outdoors into the school’s warm hallway.
The winding line through the corridors leading to the school’s cafeteria, now a makeshift injection site, moved quickly. The fastest was getting the shot, which only took about two seconds! Remarkable!
The nurse who injected me with the vaccine gave me a piece of paper with a time on it. I was to wait 15 minutes in the gym down the hallway to make sure I didn’t have a bad reaction. I waited and then handed in that little piece of paper to prove I had waited the allotted time for “recovery” and then I was on my way home.
Driving down Third Avenue to get to the parkway, I saw it was a busy commercial strip. It was my first time in that neighborhood.
Our Bronx office is located in the thriving Throggs Neck area and I’ve been to Riverdale, which is in the northern part of the borough, many times.
My grandkids played football for Dalton and I watched them play at Riverdale’s Horace Mann. I can never forget the winding hilly streets filled with charming, huge, Tudor-style homes.
But the high school where I had my vaccinations was in a new neighborhood for me. I was happy to see thriving stores on Third Avenue, despite the hardships of the pandemic. I’ve always believed that when you have a healthy business strip, you have a healthy community, and Third Avenue is obviously doing well!
I’m pleased to report that I had no reaction to the vaccine. I felt a little tired that evening, but pushed myself and went out for dinner. And that was that.
But I will keep my “magic” card safe and will protect its contents like it’s a diamond to be cherished!
An Icy Valentine’s Day Celebration
Even though we are living in the middle of a pandemic, I still wanted to see my grandchildren to celebrate Valentine’s Day with them. My daughter Elizabeth said fine, as long as we remained outside, and I said “OK!”
The kids said they wanted Wendy’s for lunch, so I stopped at the new drive-thru on Glen Cove Road and ordered them their chicken nuggets and French fries, just as they’d requested, and I was off to see them.
As I drove up their block I saw 8-year-old Addy shoveling the snow from her driveway. She seemed so little next to the towering piles of frozen snow!
I pulled into the driveway and they led me to the backyard, where there were some chairs amongst the snow that we could use.
Jonah had brought a blanket outside to keep us warm, but I immediately knew it was too thin to help keep away the 20-degree cold. Fortunately, I keep an electric blanket in the car, so we grabbed it and it came to my rescue!
After 45 minutes of joy talking to the kids, I realized I was turning into an icicle! My body was frozen, but my heart was as warm as toast for having seen them.
Here’s to warmer days ahead!