“Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
― William Shakespeare, Macbeth
Do you feel that you are flailing at shadows? That what used to be “real” has become a stage and all your “stuff” is just props. This sense of unreality has grown exponentially throughout this endless year which clearly isn’t over yet. The longer this lockdown goes on, the more unreal everything seems.
I learned late on Wednesday night that, as of Thursday morning, I could (finally) sign up for a vaccine. One of the reporters asked the Guv if he was finally letting people with comorbidities who hadn’t hit 75 into the lineup because of the furious outcry. Apparently I wasn’t the only one feeling that this was not fair at all. And Charlie Baker seemed bound and determined to make sure the every single person in the state over 75 got their shot before they could move on.
Also, last week they created a “central call number” — as has every other state — so you could in theory centrally connect to all sites giving vaccines. But it didn’t work very well from the start. Instead of being able to reach out to individual organizations, you have to go through this central number. So, on Thursday morning, I was up very early and on the phone — very early — and ever vaccine site had crashed. Eventually, after I saw postings from the local TV stations that in fact, every single site had crashed, I got on the phone with the one and ONLY phone number that worked and waited — really, by the clock — 1 hour and 45 minutes until when I heard a human voice, I had almost fallen back to sleep.
So she who was in Virginia and has never been to Massachusetts, didn’t know this area or how far anything is from anywhere else. At least she asked me if Fenway Park could work. It’s 75 miles away in the middle of Boston and there are no parking lots there. There never were, though they have been trying to build a few for at least 30 years. She looked and said that indeed every site had crashed and she had to work through the same system. We ultimately realized that anyplace which had had vaccines earlier in the day was now full. I got “put on a list.” Someone will call.
I’m on a several lists. There’s a list at our hospital. They call people entirely randomly which I guess is their version of a lottery. So you might get vaccinated, but probably not because they are out of vaccines. They have just enough to give second doses to those who already got the first. The place Garry went is not taking new people and will probably close when they finish with round two. The brand new “big” facility at St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester which supposedly was going to deal with the lack of any central facility in this part of Massachusetts never really opened and anyway, they don’t have vaccines. None of the pharmacies has anything, though they are supposed to get them. Anyway, they are only sending them to SOME pharmacies and — you guessed it — all of them are far away. The closest places to us are actually in Rhode Island, just four miles down the road, but you can’t get vaccinated in another state. They won’t let you do it.
So having added this “centralized phone number,” they have made everything worse. Now when the system crashes, there’s no way to reach anyone anywhere. Whatever vaccine exists is going to Boston and the suburbs near it.
I’m avoiding news today because I’m filled with bad news and can’t absorb anymore. I took a look at the headlines in the Times and before reading anything, I was already depressed. The final article was how the lockdown was causing people to lose their hair. Funny they should mention that because mine has been falling out for several months. Apparently, it’s stress. What a surprise!
I know I need to keep trying to “make things right,” but I’m exhausted. I don’t want to spend another week on the telephone. I keep waiting for someone to offer to help me but they seem to be as bewildered as I feel. Things are not going well. This morning, the vaccine companies admit they are running out of “ingredients,” and need to do whatever it is they do to create new ingredients, whatever that means.
None of this gives a sense of confidence in whoever is “running things.” IS anyone running things?