Reflecting on the Pandemic's Impact for Our Remote Mountain Homestead



Winter fog
Photo by Bruce McElmurray

With the Covid-19 pandemic lessening in some areas and a hopeful feeling as more people are vaccinated, this past year has taught us terms like "shelter in place", "social distancing" and "wear your mask". For most it has been a very difficult or inconvenient time. It appears everyone has been impacted in one way or another and most now realize that life probably won’t ever go back the way it was before the Covid 19 pandemic. The impact has touched every corner of the earth and the impact is different depending where we are located. 

Living a Remote Life During the Pandemic

Prior to the pandemic, we chose to live remotely at 9,800 feet of elevation, but the pandemic changed even in this remote location. Living the way we used to live has changed, but the governmental restrictions imposed as a result of the pandemic actually made our lifestyle even more conflicted than usual. We didn’t have to be concerned over social distancing, because our nearest neighbor is about one mile away. We therefore had very little interaction with people — unlike those living in a more populated area.

Federal And State Mandates

Federal and State mandates about keeping our distance from others was not an issue for us as we live that way normally. The issue with us was being told by authorities we had to isolate as opposed to it being our free choice. Perhaps the scary part for us was the actual virus itself, where a carrier of the disease could pass it on to others being totally unaware they were even infected. The distrust and fear generated was unnatural for us. It created a social atmosphere for us that made it such that we didn’t know who to trust. Coupled with the rising death toll from the disease it separated us from friends and our normal self isolation was suddenly a mandated and forced isolation.

Government Trust

I recently read that polls indicate that only 17% of citizens trust our government. With all the disinformation that was being distributed throughout the initial phase of the pandemic, that percentage seemed realistic in my opinion. Closing down businesses and places of public gatherings, whether to wear a mask or not or if they were effective or what was effective treatment all served to create confusion with us. We avoided people and trips to town for groceries.

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