As of Friday, we have officially been in Tashkent for fourteen days and our quarantine is over. I can't say that the quarantine was particularly onerous - we've been doing some form of quarantine since March and it's not like we get out that much anyway.
The children were happy about some aspects of quarantine, mostly that they didn't have to start Russian lessons. It was kind of nice to get over jet lag in complete isolation and not have to worry about Brandon getting to work or having to see anyone until we were fully human again.
Getting groceries wasn't a problem either, as we've been doing grocery delivery for several months now. Restaurants also deliver, so we weren't even stuck with the food that I felt like cooking in the depths of jet lag (which, as it turns out, was nothing more complicated than cold cereal).
When I started cooking again, however there were a few meals when I discovered that I had forgotten a key ingredient and had to switch plans at the last minute. Usually I send a child off to the store for last-minute ingredients, but couldn't because of quarantine.
The hardest part from me was not having a housekeeper for two weeks. I had visions of an amazingly dirty house after two weeks of neglect. Briefly I considered cleaning it myself, but decided that we could live with the filth until Shoira was allowed to come back to work. But other than our magic kitchen floor, which gets dirty whenever it's merely breathed on, and overflowing bathroom trash cans, the rest of the house stayed surprisingly clean. Not that I'm planning on having it cleaned less frequently.
For the children, the hardest part was not going to the store. Everyone had been paid to clean out a neighbor's yard while visiting my parents in Raleigh, and so the children were flush with new cash that was begging to be spent on treats. Joseph had a detailed shopping list of all the things he would buy, and was disappointed to come back from the grocery store with 'gun' not crossed off his list. However, he did come home with a new Lego set and candy, so he was somewhat mollified.
The children, sadly or happily depending on who you talk to, are beginning all their lessons this week. I'm pretty sure that the teachers are happy that we are beginning lessons this week also, as the cost for five children's lessons isn't a small sum. I'm less happy, as now I have to make sure everyone does their practicing.
But, most of all, I'm happy that we've made it through our quarantine, and even happier that the quarantine appears to have been completely unnecessary. Honestly, I'm shocked that we not only managed to spend over thirty-four hours flying across the world and around the States, but also spent time with lots of friends and family - some of whom also did a lot of traveling - without getting nothing more than a handful of very snotty colds. I'm not quite sure how we managed to avoid getting sick, especially after spending twelve hours on a completely full plane (twice). I can't claim that it was because we were especially careful, so I guess I'll just chalk it up to good luck.
The end of quarantine means that we will be back to our full and busy Regular Schedule. And with the return of the regular schedule, we begin our last year in Tashkent. Brandon has already started looking at new jobs, which only further emphasizes our dwindling time at this post. I'm happy that we still have a year left before the dislocation of moving, but the last year is always full of Lasts. This is our last fall here, so we only have one more opportunity to do all the fall things (which I'm at a loss to remember what they exactly are). Then it will be the last Christmas, and the last spring and then the last summer and then we'll be gone.
But for now it's only September, and so I'll enjoy my time, quarantine free, here in Tashkent.