Let’s Talk with Lois Winston

Can appliances get Covid-19? It’s a question I’ve been pondering for a year now.

By Lois Winston

A few months before the pandemic turned our world upside-down and inside-out, my stove died. In March of last year when the pandemic was getting really bad in New Jersey, my son was so worried that he suggested we drive down to Nashville to stay with him and his family. We figured we’d be there maybe three weeks before everything blew over. We wound up staying two months.

The universe has a twisted sense of humor.

We arrived home to find our refrigerator had developed a bad case of cracked seals (not the aquatic kind!) The fridge was twelve years old. Replacing the seals made no sense. So we set out to buy a new refrigerator in the middle of a pandemic. Again the universe laughed at our naiveté.

Even though we’d had our choice of refrigerators back when we bought the current one, it now seemed that there was only one make and model that would fit in the space, due to the way our kitchen is configured. And that fridge was on backorder. We were told it might take upwards of two months. We placed a deposit and hoped for the best.

Two months stretched into three, then four, then five. Finally we had a delivery date. The refrigerator arrived at the warehouse—damaged. That was back in October, five months ago. I’m still waiting for the replacement while the old one continues to die a slow death.

But while this was going on, the universe kept laughing. Over the course of the last six months, the dishwasher also died, then the clothes dryer. Neither could be repaired. And because we’re still in the middle of a pandemic, appliances are as scarce as vaccine appointments. (Yes, my husband and I are still waiting for ours!)

Thanks to the pandemic, the new dishwasher cost twice what I would normally pay, not because of price-gouging but because the only available model was a high-end one from Europe. And yes, I know I could wash dishes by hand, but we’re about to sell the house. So we really had to replace the dishwasher before the For Sale sign goes up.

We did get a break on a dryer, though. We were able to buy one that had been returned to the warehouse because the customer who ordered it found some microscopic scratches in the finish. My laundry is in an unfinished section of my basement. I can live with microscopic scratches; I can’t live with hanging laundry outside in the middle of winter.

Compared to what some people are dealing with right now, these are minor annoyances. I’m not really complaining so much as rolling my eyes at the gotcha the universe has seen fit to dump on me. At least someone is laughing.

And the big question remains—which will we get first, our refrigerator or our vaccine appointments?

What about you? How are you coping? Can you rely on your sense of humor? Meditation? Chocolate? Wine? Whine? Or whine with your wine? Or perhaps you get in the car, roll up the windows, and scream for a minute every so often. Hey, whatever works, right?

Speaking of humor, if you like humor with your mysteries, check out my Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mysteries.

And for those visiting the blog on March 18 only: this is the last day of our March contest. Zip over and enter today. Click here.