By Sandra Hutchinson
I know there’s no shortage of people ruminating on the Web about being stuck at home and the various ways they are trying to cope during the Covid-19 shutdown. I am intensely grateful that I can do my work for our business from home, I don’t often have to venture into public places, and I don’t have young children at home who need help with schoolwork! Above all, I am thankful that most of my friends and family seem to be healthy and weathering the storm.
The line up on our kitchen counter. Grateful to have a can of Lysol spray.
But since we can’t physically travel, and are pretty much confined at home, I haven’t published an article on my blog since January, when I wrote about our visit to Frida Kahlo’s home in Mexico City. So even though I can’t share some wonderful destination, I can share what’s been happening in my house in northern New York State.
One of my “blogger friends,” Janet Simmonds, who publishes an elegant blog called The Educated Traveller, recently posted fascinating material about the origin of the word “quarantine.”
Janet splits her time between her native England and Italy, primarily Venice. She explains that beginning in the 14th century, various “plagues” arrived in Venice, decimating the population. In the early 16th century, the Venetians set aside an island in the lagoon where arriving ships would be isolated for forty days, which was the length of separation believed to be necessary to be prevent the spread of disease through the population. The Italian word for forty is “quaranta.”
I hope you will give Janet’s blog a read. Here is the link to her fascinating article entitled Venice — Health, Quarantine and Santa Maria Della Salute.
Venice – Health, Quarantine and Santa Maria della Salute