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  • Writer's pictureInger and Jeff Latreille

It Happened

Sunday, January 2, 2022 through Monday, January 10, 2022

Days 567 through Day 575

What a crazy set of events. As fate would have it, I developed all the symptoms of COVID New Year’s night. I hit the hay around 8:00 p.m. not feeling quite myself, chalking it up to too much celebrating and not enough sleep. But when the next morning came around, I could barely get out of bed. Everyone else seemed to be doing o.k. We left Steve and Linda’s sometime in the morning on January 2 where I haphazardly apologized for putting a damper on the party, hoping they wouldn’t get whatever I had. Linda and Steve graciously invited us to stay at their place since they were leaving for Portland. Jeff’s fear was that if we stayed longer, and he got sick, it would just make matters worse with too many loose ends to tie up in California. We were also worried about compromising Tim and Tracy’s upcoming trip to Africa, a trip of a lifetime really. A trip to Africa is already hard enough to plan perfectly but add a pandemic in the mix and it’s near impossible. With all of the varied COVID testing requirements, in each state, each country, it’s a nightmare trying to get clearance for travel.

It seemed pretty obvious, though I wasn’t sure, that I had COVID. With all of the Holiday gatherings and the spike in the Omicron variant, there were warnings that things would pique in January. The best thing we could do was to get somewhere where we could isolate for 10 days and take care of other business……Napa. Jeff got on the phone with Skyline Park (where we were a few weeks ago) to see about a full hookup site. Not a problem. Plans were a changing. We had to get back to Napa and fast. We just couldn’t risk BOTH of us getting sick. It made perfect sense that in a worse case scenario, if Jeff got sick too, that we would be all settled in with our trailer, and isolated. Originally, the plan was to spend another 3 days with my mom before leaving for Arizona on January 12th, but that clearly was not going to happen since the onset of my symptoms began on January 1st and I was 90% sure I had COVID. So Jeff phoned her to explain the situation and to let her know we’d be by the following day, January 3rd to pick up the rest of our things. The little bit that we had left there had to be brought out to the garage, so Jeff wouldn’t have to go in her house so as not to expose my mom in case he was asymptomatic. We just couldn’t take a chance exposing my mom.

Getting up at 4:00 a.m. for the long drive back to California seemed like an insurmountable task for me. I had so little energy. My rock star of a husband loaded the truck in the pouring rain and drove 600+ miles from 4:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. with no one to split the driving with, no one to have a conversation with (other than the dog), and I remembered nothing. When we arrived at my mother’s in El Dorado Hills, Jeff loaded what he could while I faintly remember saying goodbye to my mom from a distance. What a sucky way to end our visit. This was not part of the plan. From my mother’s, we drove to the storage facility to pick up the trailer. It took every ounce of energy for me to complete my small task of backing up the truck so Jeff could hitch us up. Lastly, was the final 90-minute drive to Napa to Skyline Park. We arrived in the rain, in the dark. Even though I’d just slept the day away, it still seemed like an impossible task for me to help guide Jeff into our site, especially with a fever, chills and fatigue while standing in the rain. Thank goodness it took only one try and about 5 minutes. He insisted I get back in the truck to stay warm until he had the trailer all fired up, ready to go. He didn’t have to ask me twice. Again, he did everything.

The next morning feeling absolutely crummy, trying to stay isolated in the back bedroom of the trailer, with a 101-degree fever and worsening sore throat, I discovered it was next to impossible to find anywhere to get a COVID test. Everyone was short-staffed with so many people out sick, and there’s a shortage of testing kits. It’s not unheard of that private labs are charging anywhere from $100 to $400 for a test. And there’s quite a few scammers out there trying to profit as well. Sickening! Shane recommended I use a testing center that he had used before, a drive-up facility that performs rapid testing and only minutes from our campsite. Our test….$100. Results: Inger-positive, Jeff-negative, Shane-positive. It’s a miracle that Jeff has been able to stay healthy while taking care of all of us. In the end, with everyone we shared our Holiday with, Jarod, Shane, Tracy, Linda and I were the ones to test positive. Thank goodness my mom and Tim’s parents haven’t gotten it. The mentality is if you feel sick, assume you have COVID. And I was just one week shy of getting my booster. My doctor recommends getting it as soon as I’m out of my isolation window. Jeff kept his appointment, so I’m thrilled he’s got an added layer of protection. It looks like my opportunity won’t be until the end of January when we’re closer to a big city.

I really need to give a shout out to my hubby for taking on so much these past 10 days, and taking care of not just me, but Shane as well. He’s got one strong immune system!! From making homemade soups, keeping Sadie entertained, bringing things to the storage unit, and keeping up with appointments, he’s been amazing!!

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