Timing, THIS And Our Own “U.N.”

Since “safer at home” became our new normal, there have been many nights over the dinner table with Johnnie’s Dad, John, when, along with prayers for health care workers, first responders, friends & family, one of us would comment on how lucky we were that the planets aligned and two lengthy hospital stays were behind us.

A little backstory is probably in order.

Since before Thanksgiving of 2019, much of our weekly calendar was filled with medical entries.  John’s health had been declining while we were at our Panama City Beach home and, from the time we returned to Chicago for the holidays and continuing as we segued into 2020, hospital stays and visits to the ER became a part of our regular routine. While we won’t go into specifics, suffice it to say that, good doctors & nurses plus, our own attention to detail, resulted in a FAR better outcome than the initial prognosis had suggested.  Following the second hospital stay, a 6 week admission to a step-down facility had the desired result and John, feeling and looking better than he had in quite a long time, was given the OK to return home.

If you heard us on WGN radio during this period of time, it was only because family and “extended-family” friends were at our house making sure Johnnie’s Dad was OK … and he really wanted to hear us on the radio.

It wasn’t long after this welcome homecoming that the COVID-19 outbreak went from a news story to the daily pandemic headline story and Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker issued a “stay-at-homeorder for the entire state.

Given John’s much better, but still recovering, condition there was no doubt that he should follow the Governor’s orders.  Adding to that the reality of the number of turns around the sun that all three of us have experienced and the on-going health issues the two of us have documented in previous blog posts, we’ve taken that “stay-at-home” order very seriously, too.

The seriousness of the situation, sadly, went from news headlines to personal experience as two of our next door neighbors became part of the story when they became victims of this horrible pandemic.  Their deaths left a hole in our hearts for two gentle people who had been dear friends for the better part of 30 years.

Like most of you, we’ve experienced a sea change of emotions as this new normal settled in.

With the exception of three grocery store excursions and one “safe-distanced” Easter dinner drop-off for family, we have been, and will continue to stay, safe inside for the duration.

This is the part where we share the lucky reality of our own, wonderful, “U. N.” … unselfish neighbors.  Without any prompting from us, some of our neighbors, knowing that all three of us fell in to the higher risk category, asked and ultimately insisted that they be allowed to make those weekly grocery store visits for us.

It is germane to this blog post to mention that, over the years we’ve been in this location, our neighborhood has, indeed, become a sort of mini-United Nations.  Japanese, Chinese, Iranian, Greek, Croatian, Hispanic and Serbian are just some of the nationalities that populate our block.  We’re not just saying this but, over the past several years, as the neighborhood has changed, we’ve frequently commented to each other that we just may have some of the best neighbors we’ve ever had.

When THIS is over … and that day WILL come … please bear with us.  We’ll try not to make too much noise, but we plan on having a seriously big patio party to say thank you to our own “U. N.”

In the meantime, please join us in staying “safer at home” … and don’t forget to wash your hands.


About steveandjohnnie

Award winning Chicago Broadcasters, inducted into WGN radio's Walk Of Fame. Authors of the Les Paul memoir, "A Little More Les." http://alittlemoreles.com You'll find even more about us at http://www.steveandjohnnie.com/
This entry was posted in Coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Partly Personal and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to Timing, THIS And Our Own “U.N.”

  1. IrishMary says:

    God Bless You, Steve and Johnnie. You’ve had a lot to handle, lately, yet you’re bolstering your audience as well! When we have to, we have to, that’s the only way to accept the “Be safe at Home” edicts we adhere to. If for nothing else but to keep those workers, that are so essential in these times, SAFE. When my husband passed, I moved to an apartment near family. I “downsized” my sewing machine and surger. If I still had them, I’d make face masks for the world. So, I’m searching for what I can do to be useful! I hope you are safe and healthy!

  2. Deb Hall says:

    How blessed you are to be tucked away in your own ‘U. N.’ As I, too have found my village, it is indeed so heartwarming when the addresses melt into genuine friendships and ‘family’. I count it as a great gift when the hard times are made bearable by those we can see from our porches.

  3. Hal Ross says:

    Glad to hear that you are all doing well!

  4. Mary Jo Fischer says:

    Stay safe!! Be well!! Prayers for all of you very loved people!

    These days are very trying for all of us living thru this pandemic. I miss your very comforting voices and only wish you were on the air to join us all together as you have done so many times before! You both have the gift of calming our fears and I will be forever grateful for the memories of our nights together!!

  5. Dianne Marie DAndrea says:

    We are staying home! I have groceries and vodka delivered – hahahahahaha. Thank you for your stories and recipes and God Bless All of You!

  6. David Rozek " Polish Baker" says:

    David is still working,though I do stay at home. Immune system not all that great with the M.S. so I don’t take any chances. David does the grocery and whatever we need as a necessity. You two be safe, sorry to hear about your neighbors.

  7. LINDA S JOHNSON says:

    So glad you are handling things well, especially the part about washing your hands to stay well. Thank you for your update.

  8. Sue McNeil says:

    Stay healthy, in same situation. If everyone would just stay home.

  9. Sign me up for the blog

    • We’d love to, Cynthia. However, since we’re not on your email account, you’re the one who has to do it. It’s really simple. When you’re on our blog’s page, just scroll down and, on the right side, you’ll see “Follow Blog via Email.” Just click on the “FOLLOW” link and you’ll be able to subscribe. And, of course, there is no charge. Hope this helps!

  10. Barry says:

    Almost feel guilty. Me/wife about to turn 75. Me 2 yrs younger Steve’s July 77th. Both healthy, no prescription medication. By no means are we wealthy, but live in spacious wonderful suburban home, debt free, we built 40 years ago. All 3 grown, happily married children, 4 (2-15 yrs) close by grandkids. Comfortable financially. More savings than we could possibly spend. Can’t think of anything we could possibly want/need. Make charitable contributions. Love each other same as when kids after 50 yrs married. So thankful! So fortunate!

  11. fred sugimoto says:

    Lincolnwood is awesome
    Fred Guitar Works miss u guys glad you’re doing well all things considered

  12. Beatrice De La Riva says:

    Bless you both. Cannot tell you how much I miss you and your WGN show. I listened every night – all night. Have not bought a new CD since you left. Disabled now and would order online many of your suggestions after listening to them. Ah the knowledge received from your show. All your family – STAY SAFE! With love –

  13. mediawally says:

    Thank you for once again transforming news headlines into real people stories. Be well.

  14. Donna Kivland says:

    Being part of that same “elite” group, I also have been following all the rules. Kay brought me a 2nd grocery delivery on Saturday so I have a full pantry as I embark on Day 45 of keeping my house company. Thank God for computers, TV, Email, Facebook, Zoom, phone calls and even a few letters and cards from all the friends and family I miss. Even got an email including a video of Ellis saying “All done” and another of him trying cottage cheese; he’ll be walking by the time I see him again. But so far, all are safe and healthy and that’s what’s important! Keep John and yourselves safe and healthy as well.

  15. Dolores Wisenbarger says:

    I,m sorry about your health problems. I have had a couple bouts but doing well now. The last big event in my life was a 90th birthday party in Feb. Over 100 hundred friends and family came. I’m glad it was not cancelled. Saw so many former co-workers and friends I hadn’t seen for years. Just missed this Co 19 timing. I do hope your issues have been resolved, Love and miss your nightly show but I still listen to WGN each night. May God bless you. D’ your RR fan

  16. Orin K3 says:

    You Folks are wonderful examples. All the Best, Orin

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