As the state starts reopening, we are all holding our breath hoping the dreaded “second wave” doesn’t come ashore — while wishing life could return to the way it once was when we only had to worry about our next doctor’s appointment, our loving but controlling adult children, or whether the season is going to be too dry — or too wet.
 I don’t think that is going to happen anytime soon and as older adults, I’m afraid we are going to be the last ones off the bus.
But we have learned to adapt — washing our hands more often, maintaining a social distance of six feet, and wearing face masks in public. (I would encourage everyone to also wear a large name-tag so I can tell who the heck I’m talking to!)
Because of this new normal, there has been a tremendous need for face masks and in the Gorge, local groups and individuals have responded by making thousands of masks: The Mid-Columbia Senior Center Quilters Group, Gorge Makers Collective, Goldendale Mask Mission, MCMC Sewers, Northshore Community Masks and The Dalles Art Center Mask Kit project. If you still need a mask, you can pick one up in The Dalles by calling the Center at 541-296-4788; in Hood River, you can stop by the FISH Food Bank if you’re unable to purchase one commercially, but supplies are running low.
But how do you use and care for your mask to protect yourself and others?
The basic principle is to always assume the face mask has virus/germs on it. Make sure it fits properly and always use the same side of the mask against your mouth. And then the hardest part: Do not touch the front of mask while wearing it! When you want to remove the face mask (or adjust it which I often need to do) use the elastic “ear buds” that wrap around your ears.
Masks should be washed after each use. Scrub your mask with soap — any kind of soap works — in a sink for 20 seconds, the same as you would with your hands. When finished, rinse out the sink. And after handling a used mask always wash your hands thoroughly.
If you want a better explanation, the Gorge Makers Collective has made an excellent video explaining how to care and wash your face mask. You can find it on the Center’s website (www.midcolumbiaseniorcenter.com) under the COVID-19 tab.
•••
The comedian on Saturday Night Live who played Emily Litella and used the catchphrase “Oh, never mind” was Gilda Radner. I received correct answers from Lana Tepfer, Patty Burnet, Barbara Cadwell, Rhonda Spies, Posie, Julie Carter (who reminded me that Gilda was married to Gene Wilder), and this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket, Kathleen Korwin.
If you are new to this column, you may be asking, “What do you mean I can win a quilt raffle ticket?” Throughout the year (when they aren’t making face masks), the center’s quilters sew several quilts to be raffled during the year, including The Dalles Cherry Festival (which has been postponed to 2021) as a fundraiser for the center. If you are a “Remember When” winner, you’ll have your name entered into the drawing — and you never know, you may win a beautiful handmade quilt!
Low budget Westerns made in Italy, commonly called “Spaghetti” westerns, were derided by critics as being inferior to American westerns until the success of the Dollars Trilogy by Italian director Sergio Leone. For this week’s “Remember When” question, who played the “Man with No Name” in these films, which included “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly,” now considered one of the greatest and most influential Western movies ever made? Email your answer to mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or send it with a photograph of Rowdy Yates, the young character in Rawhide.
 •••
Now I think I have time to squeeze in two of several “self-isolation” jokes forwarded to me by Lana Tepfer.
Ontario has banned groups larger than five. If you’re a family of six, you’re all about to find out who’s the least favorite!
After a few days of not going out, I saw someone I knew walking by on the sidewalk outside. I immediately ran to the window and started yelling to them. Now I understand dogs.
•••
Well, it’s been another week, wondering where April went. Until we meet again, breathe in, breathe out, breathe in ...
“Courage can overcome fear… almost as well as hiding under the bed.” — Anonymous
The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels daily menus but may change because of donations from local restaurants.
 Menu
Thursday (21): Spaghetti with Meat Sauce
Friday (22): Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwich
Monday (25): Closed Memorial Day
Tuesday (26): Chicken Pot Pie
Wednesday (27): Oven Baked Chicken

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