A Journal of the Plague Year 2020–chapter 142

A croissant shortage in Columbus Circle?

Friday, September 4

Today, I went to my regular doctor for an annual physical and a flu shot. My health seems to be fine.

I arrived a bit early, so I wandered around the Columbus Circle area a bit. At the vast Time Warner Center, all of the luxury Shops at Columbus Circle—H&M, Hugo Boss, Tumi, Michael Kors, etc.—remain closed, with the exception of the large Whole Foods in the basement. I thought things were reopening; guess not.

There are no signs of serious devastation in this area. No evidence of looting or gutted buildings. Everything looks pretty spic ’n’ span—just deserted.

Not long back there were several busy upscale patisseries—Maison Kayser and the like—along Broadway as you approached Columbus Circle. These are now shuttered, providing shelter only for the homeless.

My GP refused to speculate about when a Covid-19 vaccine might be available. He told me that his office was closed for several months and only recently reopened. In the interim, he put in some time doing pandemic duty at a hospital, which sounded pretty awful. Now, he comes into the office three days a week, with another day spent at a separate office.

Looking at my fellow passengers on the Q train and at pedestrians on the street, I would guess that at least 30% had their masks pulled down below their noses. That’s not effective, but I guess people are tired of being responsible.

Once again, the subway trains seem quite clean, uncrowded, and very speedy.

Dinner: chilled cucumber soup, grilled hot dogs, and baked potatoes with sour cream.

Entertainment: Netflix’ Young Wallander, a Swedish crime drama.