Day 25 – I’m a Grannie Nerd…


Seriously – how nerdy is it to just love looking at stats? And I’ve found the best site ever for looking at stats related to COVID-19

Color me happy

So first – some of my favourite stats from this site (Statista.com)- displayed in graphs so they are super easy to understand.

Stat #1 – Ever wonder which sex is more likely to self-isolate? Wonder no more:

Stat #2: This is one of my favourites – they asked young adults – 13-25 – what activities they found helpful – and not helpful while self-isolating. Watching the news was the LEAST helpful – and no where in the list are things like – playing bridge, cleaning their house, making their bed, doing crafts, sleeping … But no surprise – these are kids!

Since I’m not sure that these images are going to show up on my blog – I’m quitting now..

Signing off to look for more interesting Stats – and again that website is Statista.com

The Soup Lady

Day 23 – Is this cabin fever I’m feeling?


I love it when experts come out with something that completely agrees with how I’m feeling – so I read this note in the Gazette (on line of course) and went – Right – I have Cabin Fever too!

As per the Gazette – “cabin fever” is not an actual psychological term. But all that irritability, sleepiness, restlessness, lack of motivation or focus we’re feeling is certainly valid, according to some experts.

“There’s a cluster of symptoms that we see when people are forced to being cooped up for extraordinarily long periods of time,” said registered psychologist Janine Hubbard.

We are creatures of habit, so it’s no surprise that some people are feeling restless, which can manifest in dangerous ways, including risky public behaviour, she added. People who are experiencing a lack of control and stimulation “need to activate some of those endorphins,” she explained, as a way to shake off the lack of energy or motivation.

The feelings of cabin fever are compounded by one key question about around self-isolation: when will it end?

In Canada in general, and Quebec in particularly – things aren’t looking rosy. The newest estimates are at least another month – perhaps 2. I have a friend who has decided that she isn’t going to listen to the negative news stuff – but I’m more of the – if it’s going to be that long – let’s get organized – mentality.

So – here are tips to help cope: (as cut and pasted from an article by Alexander Mae Jones, a writer for CTV News):

WHAT DO I DO IF I HAVE CABIN FEVER?

The good news is that there are a number of things that a person can do to fight the feelings of helplessness and hopelessness.

Establish a routine

You don’t have to get up at 6:00 a.m. every day, but keeping yourself on a loose routine of some type — getting out of bed at a similar time, having regular mealtimes, attempting to keep to a shower schedule — will help to keep your spirits up as the weeks go on.

“Having regular ‘work time,’ whether that’s you working, whether that’s your kids doing some schoolwork, whether that’s you tackling a project, (or) building some exercise time (is important),” Hubbard said.

Change your clothes

When you get out of bed, put on something that you didn’t sleep in.

“Get dressed,” Hubbard suggested. “Even if it’s just into (more) comfy clothing.”

Putting on a full suit for a work from home shift might be energizing for some, but don’t worry, it’s not completely necessary — the important thing is just the act of getting dressed at all. Wearing pants in a pandemic is an achievement.

Try to see the sun

If at all possible, getting some time outside can have a huge impact on your mental health.

“It’s amazing how much that exposure to sunlight is going to help with some of your endorphins and your serotonin levels, which are all going to make you feel a whole lot better,” Hubbard said.

If going for a walk makes you feel more anxious because of worries about maintaining physical distancing, just standing on a balcony, in your backyard, or on your front steps for a few minutes could improve your mood.

Be social…

Checking in with others through technology or phone calls is important. We all need social support, and just hearing a human voice can remind us that the world outside of our home still exists.

“If you’re used to having a coffee with a coworker each morning … set up some virtual Zoom meetings or FaceTime where you’re going to have your little cup of coffee together and just be connected,” Hubbard said.

…but take breaks from social media and the news

Staying informed on developments within your country and across the world is important, but refreshing Twitter all day and overloading on horrifying headlines can leave you feeling overwhelmed.

Hubbard recommended limiting your news intake to “once or twice a day (from) a reputable news source where you know you’re getting accurate, up-to-date information.”

And when you talk to family and friends over FaceTime or the phone, “try to keep your conversations about things other than COVID. Talk to them about the silly things you’ve been reading or watching on TV.”

This doesn’t mean you should not talk to loved ones about your stresses and how you’re holding up during this crisis.

But if conversations turn into two people repeating every upsetting news article they’ve read in the past two weeks, it could just leave participants feeling worse afterwards, instead of feeling connected.

Try to engage in “active distraction,” not just Netflix

Having downtime where you don’t have to think is important, and watching TV or movies can be great for that.

“But try to include some active distraction,” Hubbard said. “So something that distracts you and relaxes you, but also engages your brain.” 

This could be pulling out a board game if you are quarantining with multiple people, or “doing a puzzle or pulling out an old craft project.

“Something where you’re feeling both relaxed and productive,” Hubbard explained. This can help to take away some of the helplessness people can experience in this time.

Don’t compare your quarantine to others

“It’s really important to remember that this experience looks different for everyone,” Hubbard said. “So yes, while you may have some people who are able to use this as a time for … around the house projects or doing some cleaning … or developing a new skill, there are some people who are just trying to get out of bed every morning and get their kids fed and clothed and trying not to crumble.”

For some, their largest immediate worry right now is boredom and how to fill the days in order to stave off anxiety. But others may have family members or loved ones battling COVID-19, or may be still working on the frontlines, or may have lost their jobs and be preoccupied with financial concerns.

These people “don’t have time for self-development projects,” Hubbard said.

Others may be battling mental health issues strong enough that seeing people post on Instagram about how many new languages they’re learning may not be inspiring, but instead feel like social pressure to be doing better than a person is currently capable of.

If all you can do one day is get out of bed, put on sweatpants and reheat Kraft dinner, that’s still an accomplishment, Hubbard said.

“If that’s what you manage to accomplish, that’s fantastic. Tomorrow might look a little bit different. We’re all going to have our strong days and we’re all going to have our days where we’re not feeling so on top of it.”

Shower!

This one is from me personally. My friends and family are reporting that there is a lack of – well – showers happening. So make being clean part of your ‘cooped’ up routine.

Having already changed my clothes, bathed, and created a daily routine – I’m signing off to go for a walk!

The Soup Lady

Day 21 – I’m getting desperate for laughter – so here’s some we can share!


My Daughter-in-law shared these with me – and I’m sharing with you. And you can feel free to share with your friends.

We all need some laughter in our lives right now.

Did you know that on the Canary Islands there is not one canary? And on the Virgin Isles? Same thing – not one canary there either!

If Cats worked at Home Depot – they’d say: “Welcome – go find it yourself”

I’m glad I learned about parallelograms in Hight School Math instead of how to do my taxes. It comes in so handy during Parallelogram Season.

You drop something when you were younger, you just pick it up. When you’re older and you drop something, you stare at it for a bit contemplating if you actually need it anymore.

One way to find out if you are old is to fall down in front of a lot of people. If they laugh, you’re still young. If they panic and start running to you, you’re old.

Musings of a dog: Look at my mom outside picking up my poop. She had better wash her hands before she even thinks about touching me.

I find, these days, that most of my conversations start out with: Did I tell you this already? Or What was I going to say?

Instead of a sign that says ‘do not disturb’ I need one that says ‘already disturbed – proceed with caution!”

The main function of the little toe on your foot is to make sure that all the furniture in the house is in place.

I finally did it! Bought a new pair of shoes with memory foam insoles. No more forgetting why I walked into the kitchen.

You never appreciate what you have till it’s gone. Toilet paper is a good example.

Heads up on this one – if you are still pro-Trump – skip to the bottom… But honestly – it’s irresistibly funny….

If Trump were Captain of the Titanic
– There isn’t any iceberg
– There was an iceberg but it’s in a totally different ocean
– The iceberg is in this ocean but it will melt very soon
– There is an ice berg but we didn’t hit the iceberg
– We hit the iceberg, but the damage will be repaired very shortly
– The iceberg is a Chinese iceberg
– We are taking on water but every passenger who wants a lifeboat can get a lifeboat, and they are beautiful lifeboats
– Look, passengers need to ask nicely for the lifeboats if they want them
– We don’t have any lifeboats, we’re not lifeboat distributors
– Passengers should have planned for icebergs and brought their own lifeboats
– I really don’t think we need that many lifeboats
– We have lifeboats and they’re supposed to be our lifeboats, not the passenger’s lifeboats
– The lifeboats were left onshore by the last captain of this ship
– Nobody could have foreseen the iceberg

And my personal favourite ‘Tumpism..”:

– I’m an expert on icebergs. I’ve got lots of friends who deal with icebergs. Some of the best. Really good ice people who know ice and their forms of berginess…

Signing off to go search for more things to laugh about in these troubling and frustrating times – and hoping that you and yours are safe and healthy – The Soup Lady

Day 10 & 11 – the trip home


We pack up our island hideaway – and eat a last farewell lunch on our balcony overlooking Sand, Ocean and Warm Salty Breezes.

When will I ever get back here?

They are closing the island around us – the restaurants have gone to Take-away only – the news reports are getting worse and worse, and while it’s easy to find Toilet Paper – there are no masks on the island to be found.

So we put bleach into little bottles to use for cleaning our seats on the airplanes and in the waiting area of the airport – and head out.

The airport in St. Croix is pretty much as expected – they haven’t really bought into the social distancing thing here, and no one has apparently taught them exactly how to wear a mask.

The TSA folks are clearly traditional islanders – and the mask they have been given are either on their chins or on their foreheads. I get it – these things are comfortable, but they aren’t really trying hard either.

To boot – the whole – social distance thing is a bit foreign. So some folks – like us – try to stay away from other folks, and other folks don’t mind standing in tight groups. Even on the airplane, crew members lean over to chat with other crew members. I’m sure the message will eventually get thru – even here – but for now, I’m leaving a place that still thinks this might be some kind of mainland joke – and going to a place that is already reporting over 1000 cases.

There are very few other passengers. Which explains why the earlier flight out of St. Croix to Miami was canceled. It makes no sense for airplanes to fly empty both ways – and American is obviously cutting back on all the excess flights it can afford to lose without leaving folks stranded or losing their gate privileges .

Our fairly boring flight lands us in a deserted Miami Airport and we head over to pick up our luggage and get on the shuttle to the EB hotel. I stayed there once before – they are a wonderful 4 star property near the airport – and they have the best bathrooms (aka great showers!) ever. We check in – again a rather casual attitude toward social distancing – and move in.

Our shuttle driver had listed the restaurants nearby – the one in the hotel is doing ‘carry-out’ only – and to be honest, looks closed. The one our driver described as a Latino cafe sounds the best and we walk thru deserted street to get there.

There’s a customer at the take out window – so I wait for him to move away so I can grab the menu. He signals me to move in – and I tell him – we’re social distancing – can you please back up? He laughs – but moves away. Miami just isn’t totally on the right page yet I’m seeing.

Dinner was typically Cuban – heavy handed by delicious. We eat in the room, watch a snatch of TV, then go to bed.

In the morning I enjoy the shower – for a good 20 minutes – it’s that nice – then we board the shuttle back to the airport.

Our driver tells us he’s fine – he’s been showering more often.

Our flights back to Montreal are more of the same. Empty planes, Empty airports, Empty waiting areas. I wipe down everything, stay as far from other folks as I can – and buy 16 masks when I spot them at one of the little shops that sells candy at the airport. Apparently they just got a big shipment in the day before – but with no customers – there are no sales.

Once back in Montreal – we realize that clearly folks here are taking the whole thing more seriously. Masks are now on over mouths and noses – and there’s protection set up for all the folks manning the custom booths. I wipe down the screen of the terminal we use to do our ID check – we pass thru customs, grab out suitcases – wipe them down too – and head out.

Our taxi cab is equipped with a plastic shower curtain – hastily stapled along the roof line separating the driver from us – and we have to use the tap feature on the credit card reader. This does feel like Montreal is taking the whole thing more seriously.

Once home – we realize that our darling Daughter-in-Law has done a massive amount of shopping for us – there’s food for a week, either on the counter or stacked carefully in the fridge.

She’s even bought me flowers! A glorious Hydrandia that is in riotous bloom. Lovely. We are well and truly welcomed home to start our mandatory 14 day ‘stay at home’ period. The rules are simple. No leaving your yard – for anything. No visitors. Wipe down everything that enters your home.

Sigh

Signing off – The Soup Lady

Day 19 – It’s feeling like Ground Hog Day


You remember that movie – it was awesome. Bill Murray is caught in a time wrap – he keeps repeating the same day over and over again.

Well – this forced confinement is beginning to feel a bit the same. I’m caught in a time wrap of repeated actions – get up, get dressed, play bridge, maybe chat with folks, eat dinner, watch an old episode of Death in Paradise – go to bed – and repeat

But if you remember that movie – you will also remember how Bill’s character gets out of the loop. He re-invents himself by using the time constructively. And I’m watching folks who are capable of doing just that – and I’m unbelievable impressed

Take this link for example:

https://www.facebook.com/601402741/posts/10157229075837742/?d=n

A Sedar on Zoom?

How absolutely creative is that – they had to have re-written the song, then learned and practice their parts, then figured out how to get it all captured on ‘film’.

Amazingly creative.

Ok – They are from Berkeley – and maybe they are actually theatre folks in truth – but I don’t care. They used their time to do something that made me laugh. And honestly – that was well worth their time.

Signing off to find something else funny –

The Soup Lady

Day 9 – Laugh a little – it’s good for the immune system


Seriously – I’m sure there is some study out there that proves that laughing improves the ability of white blood cells to fight off COVID-19. Must be right?

In any case – my daughter-in-law has been gleefully sharing jokes related to the epidemic with me – so on the eve of my getting on an airplane (that’s scary) to leave my safe haven (also scary) – I share with you some humour.

What if they close the Grocery Stores? We’ll have to hunt for our own food. I don’t even know where Doritos live!

Like a Good Neighbor – Stay Over There —->

First time in History we can save the world by laying down in front of the TV and doing nothing. Let’s not Screw This UP!

A link to a song that sums it up – Stay the F*ck at Home – so worth a listen!

Thoughts and prayers going out to all those Married Men who’ve spent months telling the wife – I’ll do that when I have the time.

Every few days it would be smart to put your jeans on to be sure they still fit. Pajamas and Sweats will have you believe that all is well.

Now that we have everyone washing their hands correctly – Next week Turn Signals!

Wanna find out who your real friends are? Ask them to borrow a roll of toilet paper!

Yet another great video worth watching – again shared by my daughter-in-law – and trust me this one is really funny – in a serious way: Flatten the curve\

Single man with Purcell seeking Woman with Toilet Paper for good clean fun

Ladies – time to start dating the older dudes – They can get you in the Grocery Store Early

I know that there are a lot more in this vein out there – I saw a bunch that basically made light of all the sports cancelations – implying that men suddenly realized there was a wife in the house.. Like all jokes – funny because they have a grain of truth in them.

True – but still very funny – the Leader of Quebec has decided that during this crisis all stores need to close on Sunday – even Grocery stores. Why? All workers need a day off. (Why am I leaving my island hide-away to go home I am forced to wonder…)

So share any jokes you have here – and remember – Orange Juice and Laughter are great for the immune system.

Be safe

Be healthy

Signing off to spend 25 hours getting from my island to my home in Montreal – all the while keeping social Distance and wiping down surfaces… The world has never been so clean…

The Soup Lady

Day 8 – We must leave our island hide-away


The borders are closing and the flights out of here are getting canceled.

As much as I’d rather hide here on the island – we have just 9 COVID-19 cases on the island – we need to get back to Canada while the getting is still possible.

We had a flight planned that would leave the island around 3:30 in the afternoon, getting us home (via Miami) at around midnight. But the direct flight from Miami to Montreal was an early casualty of the need to cut back on planes flying empty.

Our next option – leave early in the morning – fly to Miami, from there to Chicago, and then home. The idea of spending 4 hours in the Chicago Airport exposed to all those travellers was frankly scaring me to bits – but at least it was just one day.

Now the morning flight from St. Croix has been canceled.

We have to go to Miami and spend the night in a hotel there. Then in the morning – we need to get back to the airport – from there via Philly home.

I called the hotel – who warned us that food service is very restricted – basically carry out only and eat in your room. And there are no services in the hotel – no pool, no sauna, no nothing… and no loitering in the lobby.

On the good news side – they are using serious measures to sanitize the rooms – and I trust them to do what they say.. It’s a very nice hotel, and I think they would make every effort possible to make sure we’re safe.

So that’s the plan.

I’ll report on how it goes when it goes….

Signing off to wish her husband of 50 years a very happy 70th birthday – The Soup Lady

Day 6 – Advice on home schooling – from an Expert!


I read this on one of my absolute favourite sources of interesting news and health info – the Tufts University Newsletter – called “Tufts Now” (google it already) and thought it good enough to share. Enjoy.

The author of the piece is Taylor McNeil – and his email address is at the bottom.

He starts off with a fabulous quote by a British Professor forced to home-school his 6 year old. After 30 minutes – he tweeted – School Teachers should earn a Million Pounds a year for doing this!

Having been lucky enough to ‘home-school’ two of my grand-kids for several years – I share both the pain and the joy of spending hours and hours with a young person. It’s not an easy task – and my best advice is to break it down into small, extremely manageable bits. We can keep focus a lot longer than a 3, 5, 7, you name it, year old. Teachers know that short and sweet and highly focused beats out long, boring, slow paced learning.

In any case – what follows is the text of his article. It’s basically suggestions by a senior lecturer in the Department of Eduction, and I’d suspect taken from a paper. But it does contain some really good ideas for all those parents out there now getting up each morning to the ‘sunny’ faces of their kids – ready to start the day with a lesson. Or two.

“That doesn’t mean there are not things we can all do with our children, said Erin Seaton, a senior lecturer in the Department of Education in the School of Arts and Sciences. From creating new routines to devising project-based learning, she thinks parents can turn a potentially distressing time to an opportunity for new types of learning.

At the same time, she recommends talking with your child about the changes going on in the world. “Take cues from their questions, and respond with honesty and reassurance,” she said. “Seek out support,” she added. “Ask friends and relatives what they are doing to keep busy.”

Here are Seaton’s recommendations about how to help children cope with so much time isolated at home.

Routines are important. In a chaotic and uncertain world, schools can provide a structure that is comforting to a child. Losing this routine can leave children unsettled. Think about when your child will do best with more structured times, and when you need your child to be independent for your own sanity or work schedule.

Invite your child to help you create a routine and try to stick with it. Build in breaks, and if you can, try to find time for your child to go outside. Think about spaces that are best for working and learning—sharing these can be challenging. Try to carve out a corner or counter space for your child to consistently work.

Establish screen time guidelines. Talk through screen time ahead of time, so that your child knows what the expectations are. Keep in mind that unsupervised screen time in a crisis might be scary for young children; have to-go and approved apps and programs a child can access on their own.

“Follow the child.” Italian educator Maria Montessori urges parents to “follow the child”—observe a child’s passions and tailor their education to them. Learning at home can offer children a chance to dig deeply into a subject of their own choosing, from baking to politics, video game design to volcanoes, women’s soccer to activist art.

Focus on project-based learning; help your child to identify a project they can explore deeply and without too much guidance or adult support. Can your child create their own paper basketball court and use statistics to show how they might pick their dream team? Even though they are homebound for now, could they create a travel plan and budget for a new destination, here on Earth or in space? Can they design their own future city, including the laws and policies they might enact? What would it look like if your child tried to map their neighborhood? Could they create a cookbook with favorite family recipes to share with others?

Independence is important. Montessori argued that children need to learn through experimentation and practice and that independence can build a child’s sense of confidence. In my family, there is always a tension between wanting my child to do something independently and the need to rush out the door.

Right now, parents have the gift of time. Allow a young child to practice tying their shoes or an older child an opportunity to solve a puzzle or problem without solving it for them. Likewise, don’t feel as though you need to rush in to fix every problem. Invite children to come up with their own solutions or try things first without coming to you for assistance.

Help with household chores. Inevitably, having children at home is going to create more mess, more dishes, more unidentified sticky globs on the floor and chairs and, in my house, windows. Help your child to identify some daily chores they can accomplish on their own as a part of the routine. Have your child make a box or bag or chart that lists activities they can do when they feel bored or you need them to play independently.

Keep up skills, with an accent on fun. It never hurts to practice basic skills, but allow for children to do this creatively. Playing cards and using dice can be a wonderful tool for reviewing math skills. Cooking offers ample opportunities to apply ratios or measure out fractions.

Reviewing these basic skills never hurts and can strengthen understanding for more advanced concepts, and it does not require expensive materials. Games and puzzles build skills in logic and reasoning, but also in taking turns, planning, and creative problem solving.

Make time for literacy.Reading can mean many things. Children can read directions to a game, read a book to a younger sibling, read a comic, read a newspaper story, read a biography, cut up a newspaper and arrange the words into a poem. They can write a letter to a far-off friend or a nearby neighbor who might need support, or draw a picture of what happens next in a story or movie.

Help your child to process information by asking your child about what they notice, or see, or wonder about, or what they think might happen in a story. Listen to a book online. Watch a video of a favorite author or illustrator talking about their work. Have your child film a stop-motion movie scene with toys or act out a story with their siblings or stuffed animals.

Go easy on yourself. Do what you can. These are difficult and uncertain times for parents and children. Parents will feel stressed, and children will, too. Talk about this with your child, explain how you manage stress, and invite children to help think through ways they can be more helpful or ways you can both make a difference in your own community or family. Skype with older relatives or invite them to Zoom in for dinner one night. Seek out support. Ask friends and relatives what they are doing to keep busy.

If you can, have fun. Build a fort. Have an indoor picnic. Take a walk. Make a pie. Create playlists. Have a dance party in the kitchen. Write funny tweets about how hard this is. Try to find a rhythm or a time when you can get the most work done and maximize this. In a world where children often feel over-scheduled and overwhelmed, try to frame this time as a break from the stresses and pressures children face. Offering children opportunities to go outside or experience unstructured play are valuable opportunities. “Play,” Montessori argues, “is the work of the child.””

Taylor McNeil can be reached at taylor.mcneil@tufts.edu

Interesting reading, eh? And much of it echos what I suggested for Seniors – and really for all of us. Keep busy, Make a schedule. Have Fun. Be easy on yourself. Skype. Viber. Touch Virtual Hands

Signing off to attend a meeting, play bridge, and basically be glad I’m alive. The Soup Lady

Day 5 – Reach out and Talk to a Senior


Do you know a Senior who is trapped at home alone? Reach out to them right now!

As a senior I can tell you that the hardest thing about being stuck at home is the loneliness. Seniors organized their lives to keep busy. Volunteering, playing bridge, going shopping, visiting the bank – even just walking the mall – our lives are kept organized by our schedules.

And the effect of being ‘home bound’ is to lose our schedule. My BFF – the Intrepid Traveler – is an wonderful example of how a Senior organizes her life. She volunteers at a host of different places – including two museums as a docent (volunteer guide), and also does Meals on Wheels. Her normal schedule includes swims at the Y, walks to get groceries and the like, and of course time spent going to the theatre with me. She also takes classes at our local university and volunteers there.

Expect for Meals on Wheels – all of that has ground to a halt in Montreal. No Theatre, No Museums, No shopping except for essentials, No nothing.. Now my friend has alternative resources including her daughter and grand-kids and her husband – and she’s still doing Meals on Wheels which she tells me is taking amazing precautions.

A digression here – Meals on Wheels, for those who don’t know – is a program aimed at feeding the elderly who are shut in. They sign up to get 1 or 2 meals a week which are cooked and ‘plated’ in a community kitchen. Then a team of 2 – a driver and a delivery person – take the preprepared meals to their homes. Generally the delivery person uses the ‘drop off’ as an opportunity to make sure the elderly person is in good spirts. A quick visit does that trick.

But COVID-19 concerns have changed that. Now there are two delivery persons in the car – and keep in mind that most of these volunteers are well above 70 – one to open the doors with gloves, and one to carry the meal. And no more visiting. A knock on the door (gloved hand) – a through the door – are you ok – and off they go.

In the kitchen things have changed as well. Normally the space is shared with a day care, the occasional meeting, maybe a Yoga or Tai-Chi class – but now it’s just the two cooks – staying 6 feet away from each other for safety.

End of digression

As you can imagine – my friend’s life has drastically changed – and she is not without resources. Imagine other seniors who count on their schedules to keep their lives full – now reduced to reading books or playing bridge. I have another senior friend who is coping for now with solitary walks up the mountain if it’s sunny, and a lot of reading. Her computer skills are not up to using the new technology – and she’s alone. She let me know that her daughter is calling daily- which is a help – but her social interactions have completely dried up.

So – got a senior in mind? Reach out now – and set a schedule to contact them regularly – daily if possible, but at least every other day. Even a 5 minute ‘check-in’ will provide them with something to schedule their lives around – and right now – that’s going to be a life saver.

Be safe, Be healthy – keep social distance if you must go out – and wash your hands.

Signing off to call her friends…

The Soup Lady

Day 4 – Why is Soap so great against the Coronavirus?


This is a cut and paste from a reenacting friend of ours from Malta – but it’s so well written that I just know everyone is going to be sharing it around. Read – and Wash Hands! Singing Happy Birthday twice is about 20 seconds… in case you wanted to know.

“Why can a common cleaner, available for hundreds of years be so effective against a 21-Century pandemic virus?


Well it comes down to the makeup of soap. Soap molecules have two halves, one loves water, the other loves Lipid’s, which are fats like oil and grease. The real name for these molecules is AMPHIPHILIC (amp-er-phil-ic) meaning it is Hydrophilic (loves water) and Lipophilic
(fat loving). This is what makes it so good for washing up. Soap bonds to the fats on your breakfast plate and to the water it is being washed in.
Corona Virus is made up of a ball (membrane) of Lipids containing the Virus’s RNA.

When you wash your hands, the soap lipids bond with the virus lipids and the water you are using and break the virus membrane apart, literally shredding it.


The trick is to wash long and hard enough to break all the virus membranes on your skin. 20 seconds is the average time for the bonds to break. But even if you don’t break all the membranes, the soap still clings like mad to the viruses and you wash them away under the tap.
Hand- sanitiser uses alcohol to break down the virus lipids, but it is really volatile being 60-70% alcohol, so gives it much less time to work, as it evaporates.

With soap you can just keep on going.”


Paul Osborne IEng APkgPrf MIET MIMMM
Managing Director – Performance PharmaTech Ltd.

Ok – Admit it – you read it all the way to the end right? It’s just a lovely easy read!

Be safe. Be Healthy

Wash hands!

The Soup Lady