As I write this, the forecast is at last calling for rain. Although I have loved the sweet sunny days we have been experiencing, a big part of me is excited for a day of rain, wind and thunder. It’s the way we all, or least I, have been feeling deep down inside. Full of mixed emotions, a few clouds at times, some flashes of drama.

It’s time for the weather to stop taunting us with peak festival-level spring afternoons. I have been on morning runs, afternoon walks and enjoyed evening moon gazing. But it all seems unfair that we haven’t been able to share in the glory of the weather. With friends. At a sidewalk café. Alongside a sno-ball stand. In a folding chair at French Quarter Fest or Jazz Fest.

Bring on the gloom, at least for a day.

I’m ready for the rain. To wash away the oak pollen that has gathered on my un-driven car. To water the blocks of blooming jasmine, azalea, sweet olive. To give blue birds, passing through on their way back north, a puddle or two in which to bathe.

It’s also the perfect day to pair with a podcast and a jigsaw puzzle. I have a 1,000-piece puzzle that I ordered when we first entered into self-isolation and it’s just been waiting for the right moment to make its debut. Today is that day.

I got this one, because I like pencils.

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But some other pretty, fun, bizarre options include:

Andy Warhol Selfies

Fantastical flower and spider webs

Sushi (Recipe Included!)

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Audio pairing:

Today I’ll be listening to “Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend: A Very Special Self-Quarantine Episode,” in which Conan O’Brien and his team chat about their own ways of dealing with social distancing.

Drink pairing:

Tito’s vodka, Pure Lemon lemonade drink mix




The Corona Diaries is a joint project of the Renaissance Publishing Staff. Each week during the series, a different member of our staff will share their day-to-day experiences with working from home, social distancing and the other ups and downs of living through the pandemic.