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Saturday, December 26, 2020

Love and Romance in the time of CORONA

It was their first date. They sat at the table half inside the restaurant, half outside, inside a plastic bubble. The large plastic barrier sat between them. Tara thought Daniel was cute, what she could see behind the mask and plastic shield. She worried that the plastic face shield made her look fat.

The waitress came over in her Hazmat suit, a whiteboard in hand.

Can I take your drink order? She wrote.

Daniel looked to Tara, "Would you like a beer?"

"I'm 22 years," Tara replied.

"Beer?" He gestured like he was drinking, "Wine?"

The waitress wrote Would you like a beer or wine he said, then showed Tara the clipboard.

"Oh! Beer is fine," she shouted back.

"Me too. Sam Adams," Daniel said.


He wrote Sam Adams on his whiteboard. The waitress nodded and went away.

Daniel turned to Tara, "I'm glad you came," he shouted.

"Me too," she yelled back.

The waitress came back with long metal rods with clamps on the end a beer on each one. She stepped back and put one in front of Daniel and one in front of Tara. Can I take your order she wrote on the whiteboard?

Daniel started, "She will have."

She gestured wildly with the whiteboard, "You can only order for yourself. We cannot let diners talk too much it could aid in transmission of the disease. You better hurry and order dinner ends in 30 minutes. She wrote sloppily.

Daniel said, "What? It's only 530?"

The waitress adjusted her plastic shield, "Curfew starts at 6." She wrote.

He looked at the menu, "I'll have the burger."

Tara said quickly, "I'll have the salad."

"I'm sorry, we are not serving greens tonight. The newest study said that if we carry greens the virus could be in the water droplets." The waitress wrote.

Tara frowned, "Then I'll take a burger also."

They took their beers and toasted in between the plastic between them. "So what do you do?"

"Do I have the flu?" Several patrons at the restaurant looked their way in terror. Daniel looked around, held his hands up, "NO! NO! I don't have the flu!" He looked over Tara, "What?"

"Work? Do you work?"

"OH, yeah. I sell cars."

"You're from Mars?" 

"Cars! Vroom! Vroom!" Daniel replied as he sighed.

The waitress came over with take out bags and put them on the table. Tara and Daniel looked at them confused.

"A customer tested with a temperature and they were inside the front door, so we have to close and sanitize," she slapped the check on the table and put a piece of plastic over it. "You can pay online when you get home."

The plastic between Tara and Daniel slowly went up as a voice came over the loud speaker, "MASK UP!"

They put their masks on, lowered the plastic over their face and picked up the take out. Daniel took a picture of the check with his phone and left it on the table.

There was a mad rush out of the restaurant, Tara got pushed into Daniel and blushed at the contact but he couldn't see it under the plastic. They walked back over to her car six feet apart not touching each other.

Finally, at her car, she turned to him, "I had a really good time."

"No, I don't have a dime."

"Time," she pointed to her wrist, "Time."

"Oh, can I Zoom you so we can finish our date together," Daniel asked?

"Yes, I would like that," she screamed.

They leaned in close and kissed mask to mask, plastic to plastic.

"I'll Zoom in fifteen minutes," he said and turned and walked down the street.