So after my missed office appearance yesterday, I went today.
I went. I did not stay.
I got to the office after a reasonably pleasant commute.
The office was empty when I arrived, or so it seemed.
About 90 minutes later, one person arrived in the area near me. We sit near each other, but aren’t on the same team, and don’t know each other. She went to her cube, catty-corner to mine. We went about starting our respective days, as we do.
Half an hour later, another woman crossed our area to come chat with her. I didn’t see her, but I heard every word.
She. Was. Sick.
Like, really sick. She sounded as bad as my brother-in-law did, when he was at the height of his COVID infection.
I’d been drinking coffee in a mostly empty space, but once I heard her, my mask went back on immediately. Officially, no one was supposed to be in the office if they are unvaxxed OR SICK. Both of those are supposed to keep you out of the office for now. Also, masks are now optional at our office but still requested.
Now I didn’t see her, as I said. But I heard the whole conversation. So I heard the person she was talking to tell her – pleasant as you please and with great sympathy – that she seemed really sick, maybe she should be at home.
Sicky says oh yeah maybe but actually she’s feeling a bit better today blah blah blah they’ve been passing “something” around the house for days, so-and-so is really sick still, but she’s feeling a little better and she was feeling so cooped up so she decided to come in. To the office. Without a mask. “Testing” is not mentioned as having been undertaken to even consider whether being among people is wise.
To which my neighbor expresses great sympathy but notes ever so gently that oh she understands how that is.. but that probably she should wear her mask.
Look, I’m vaccinated. So I have very low fear that I’m going to get sick enough to die from COVID. I don’t want any of the ads-on long term things COVID can mean, but dying? Not currently among my fears.
That said, I also have some things planned in the relatively near future that I will not be able to do if I test positive — even if I am not too sick, not feeling bad, or not symptomatic.
At that point, I have to test negative, or my plans are SCREWED.
In fact, I also have to give a health attestation so I can’t afford to be walking around with active signs of even a cold.
Honestly, considering all we have been through in the last 2 years, expecting people who have the option to work from home and who are sick at all to NOT come into the office, does not seem like it was an unreasonable request.
And it’s not even, “if you think you have COVID” because no one thinks they have COVID until they do. It’s “if you’re sick”. Cold, flu, chicken pox, COVID, whatever… keep your ass at home (or at least out of the office) if you are sick.
Sicky here? That was too hard for her to grasp.
Anyway their convo continued so I know she was thinking she’d do blah blah blah this weekend and maybe she’d consider wearing a mask then.
Ahem. Well. Thanks for that but you’ve infected all the air here.
So anyway I packed up and went home for the rest of my work day. Because my boss is a good guy, that wasn’t a problem.
But all that meant I drove 3.5 hours round trip, to spend less than 2 hours in the office.
Also: I won’t be doing that again, at least until after my plans all get completed. I had already planned on putting a gap in commuting in the near future for safety and this just clinches it.
If you’re sick? Feel better! Truly, from my heart.
But also? Stay home and away from other people if you have any option whatsoever. No one else wants whatever you have.