How you are today - The New York Times

This is a preview of the At Home and Away newsletter, which is now only for Times subscribers. Sign up to receive it in your inbox t...


This is a preview of the At Home and Away newsletter, which is now only for Times subscribers. Sign up to receive it in your inbox twice a week.

Welcome. It’s still Blursday, like a tweet which recently appeared in my Observed Timeline. The weeks are watery, each day a puddle of water infiltrates the next. I started writing this newsletter on a Blursday in August 2020, barely a year ago. Back then, like today, a lot of things seemed fuzzy, subject to speculation. At the time, like today, I looked for solid things to give a definition to the days.

A little routine I tried: every night before going to bed, I ask myself the question recommended by the reader “How are you today?” Sometimes I write the answer down, other times I contemplate it while brushing my teeth, a two minute meditation. Today, I have high hopes. Today I am nervous or today I am numb. Last night, the feeling was difficult to express: tightness; a high pressure cabin feel; a balloon, filled to capacity, about to burst.

Here’s how some readers answered the question over the past week (answers have been edited for clarity and length):

  • “How am I? I’m really not sure. Some days I’m depressed, some days I’m not. I’ve never unmasked myself and I’m fully vaccinated, but right now I’m in self-imposed lockdown, so much. that I can – except for the grocery store. I went back to volunteering at a local hospital for a brief week and then quit because Delta was getting famous. Back to church streaming too. comfortable in my Covid-19 routine, but I don’t do it with Delta. I don’t want to be a revolutionary case. I don’t trust people, I’m mad at some local schools for not imposing the masks and I’m afraid for my grandchildren. I feel more vulnerable than ever. —Lynne Nicholson, Birmingham, Alabama.

  • “My husband passed away last Wednesday. He had liver cancer and was 74 years old. I am 62 years old. We were married for 35 years, but we were engaged for five years before we got married. Today I feel relaxed because he had a quiet death and my son and I were by his side for the past two weeks. I loved him, but he was in pain. I sang and told him about the way to go. —Soraya Grajales, Cali, Colombia

  • “Today I feel overwhelmed and grateful together. I feel crushed because I have pneumonia and had to do the responsible thing and cancel our leaving party. (We’re moving from Maine to Alaska.) I feel grateful because I don’t have Covid, and I have a caring community that wanted to toast us but feels respected by our decision. The world of Covid is confusing. ”—Alix Laferrière, Kittery Point, Maine

  • “I’m fine, right now in the middle of summer, but beyond that, who knows?” I think about my planned return to teaching in person in less than a month, which makes me nervous but provocative, determined. I gave up on assumptions, but still hope. —Laura Hurwitz, Hamden, Connecticut.

  • “I’m awesome. Today I turned 70. I wasn’t always sure I would get this far with chronic lung disease and parents who died early. That’s reason enough. Today ‘hui, I bought a car, sent a watercolor that I didn’t think anyone would buy (but they did!), opened birthday cards and I will have a wonderful dinner soon with a good bottle of wine and the guy I’ve loved for 25 years. years. If I’ve learned anything in the past year, it’s that life is fragile and anything can happen. We owe each other to live each day with as much joy and gratitude as possible, even the most difficult. There will always be difficult ones, but today is having a great day. —Jeanie Croope, Lansing, Michigan.


  • “As I Used To” by Sharon Van Etten and Angel Olsen is the song that I have listened to more than any other this summer. In a rare case, the comments on the YouTube video are lovely. (An excerpt: “I’m going to get married AND divorce this song, then let it haunt me for the rest of my life.”) Repeat it.

  • Take a look at the showrooms of the “emblematic and controversial” Best Products catalog completed in the 1970s and 1980s by James Wines’ architectural firm, Sculpture in the Environment (SITE). “Friends and contemporaries of Wines – especially in the art world – envied his freedom to create works which, in their exploration of decay, neglect and artificiality, so overtly criticized the disposable nature of Wines. American consumer culture, the source of its customers’ business. Success.”

  • The Chrome extension View of the Earth from Google Earth is one of my old favorites, a constant source of joy. It presents you with a new image of Google Earth every time you open a new tab.


How do you structure your time? What routines or practices help you keep each day from mixing up? Tell us: athome@nytimes.com. Include your full name and location and we may include your response in a future newsletter. Were At home and away. We will read every letter sent. As always, more ideas for leading a full and cultivated life, whether at home or away, appear below. I’ll see you on Friday.



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