Vacation Covid Update

by Katy on August 24, 2023 · 39 comments

My husband and I are finally back at home in Portland. And yes, we’re positive for Covid again after completing our five day cycle of Paxlovid.

We flew home, but only after consulting with the NYC public health doctor who told us it would be safe to fly as long as we wore masks throughout the entire direct flight. We took it seriously and it was a looong day! Somehow the ticketed person who’d booked the third seat in our row didn’t show up, which was an amazing gift from the Alaska Airlines gods. I didn’t want to smoosh up against a stranger and potentially expose them to Covid.

We even spent an hour or two planning an alternate trip home, going so far as switching out our rental car plan to drop it off in Portland instead of JFK airport. But the doctor convinced us that it was fine to fly as we were fully vaccinated, had completed our round of Paxlovid and were 11 days out from our initial Covid tests.

This trip was not what we’d planned for our 30th anniversary, but it also wasn’t as dreadful as it sounds, as it was nice to just chill out with my sister in her new house. She had a couple tasks she’d wanted to my husband to tackle and he ended up doing every damned thing on that list. (And then some!)

Here’s what he did:

• Hung our great-grandmother’s ginormous heavy Venetian antique mirror, which is now part of the house’s structure.
• Replaced all eight of her smoke/carbon monoxide detectors.
• Replaced her dumb thermostat with a smart one, which was greatly discounted through her electric company.
• Pulled out and cleaned all her air conditioner filters, which apparently wasn’t a priority for the previous owners. So much dust and gunk!
• We installed the classic Portland address tiles on her house, which was my hostess gift.
• Replaced her kinked dryer vent and removed the back of the dryer to scrape out all the errant lint.
• Installed some bathroom accessories that she’d already bought and set aside. (Toilet paper holder, towel racks, etc.)
• Took a torn window screen to her local hardware store, where the owner replaced the screen for just ten bucks!
• Took down and cleaned a few ceiling lights, which was easy as we already had the ladder out.

My sister was over the moon grateful.

We did have two days at the beginning of the trip before we tested positive, as well as two days after the Paxlovid when we felt great and were testing negative and we got to cram in hanging out with various NYC friends. Luckily we didn’t get any said friends sick, which I consider a huge win.

We did get my sister sick. Sorry.

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

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{ 39 comments… read them below or add one }

Ashley Bananas August 24, 2023 at 8:05 am

You all got so much done while visiting your sister!! Come to my house next lol

This week I have not gotten a lot done. I think there are weeks like that overall. I was gifted tickets to go to a comedy show Friday and am taking my son. I will also be going to the doctor for an appointment on Friday which I am very thankful for as I was to be seen on the Sept 22nd and they were able to bump that date up to this Friday. I’m really tired but trying to look at the good things in life. Also, down 119 lbs since list year. #Thankful


Texasilver August 24, 2023 at 8:45 am

Congratulations on your weight loss! That surely took effort & self discipline. I bet your dr will be pleased.


Katy August 24, 2023 at 9:23 am

Live comedy is so fun, what a great gift to have received!


Ecoteri August 24, 2023 at 7:58 pm

@Ashley Bananas – WOAH (and I did actually say that out loud in my living room. the dog looked at me askance). Well done on that spectacular achievement of weight loss. I raise my hands to you in kudos and respect, good for you! I imagine your whole body feels so much better and that your knees in particular appreciate it. (speaking from a place where MY knees are telling me it is time to get serious about a few more pounds off them). Go you! and keep sharing all of your successes and wisdoms – including knowing that not all weeks do we hit it out of the ballpark and get a tonne done!


Ruby August 25, 2023 at 7:00 am

All the applause for your weight loss! Your doc will be thrilled!


Ashley Bananas August 25, 2023 at 10:44 am

Thank you all. There are no better friends than strangers on the internet to root for you sometimes!! <3


Jen in Santa Cruz August 24, 2023 at 8:07 am

Glad you made it home safely! What a memorable 30th anniversary trip that was. Someday you will be able to laugh about it. My husband and I also got married in 1993, and we had our Anniversary in May. Honestly, I can’t even remember what we did to celebrate, and it was only 3 months ago. At least yours will be memorable. You got so many things done at your sister’s! I would take a bout with COVID to have someone do all of those tasks at my house. 🙂


Katy August 24, 2023 at 8:15 am

We joked that my sister planned the whole thing to trap a handyman!


Katy August 24, 2023 at 9:15 am

Happy belated 30th anniversary to you as well, even though you don’t remember how you celebrated.


K D August 24, 2023 at 9:03 am

I’m glad you made it home and that you had a direct flight. You should have immunity in the upcoming weeks and months. I’m glad you were able to make lemonade out of lemons. Covid is continuing to teach us lessons.


mary in maryland August 24, 2023 at 9:40 am

One of the lessons is that an infection depletes rather than enhances one’s immune system. Each infection makes the next more rather than less likely.


Katy August 24, 2023 at 12:33 pm

True. I think having Covid makes it more likely to get Covid again in the long run.


Sandra August 24, 2023 at 9:51 am

Thank you so much for updating us on your Covid progress. It is such good news to know that you are back home again. May your recovery continue without any further complications.


Ruby August 24, 2023 at 11:48 am

So glad you made it home! I had no idea the virus could sort of resurge after completing the medication.

I hauled another load of decluttered stuff to Goodwill today. Stopped at Ollie’s Outlet afterward to pick up a few essentials, then on to Aldi to stock up on a few items. It’s been extremely hot in the Southeast, so we’ve been frugal by staying home with the blinds down to keep the house cool and making meals from whatever needs to be used up in the freezer.


Jill A August 24, 2023 at 11:54 am

I’m glad to hear you made it safely home and your trip wasn’t a complete wash. Enjoy sleeping in your own bed again.


Katy August 24, 2023 at 12:30 pm

I love my own bed so much!


A. Marie August 24, 2023 at 12:25 pm

I’m so sorry that you’re both testing positive again AFTER Paxlovid. But I’m glad you’re home again, and glad also that you and your hubs made good use of your enforced downtime for your sister’s sake.


Katy August 24, 2023 at 12:31 pm

I’ve learned that “Paxlovid rebound” is fairly common, but it’s not considered a failure as the point of the Paxlovid is to keep the the infection at a low enough rate to not require hospitalization, which it did.


Kathy August 24, 2023 at 12:41 pm

There’s no place like home especially when you’ve been sick.
Had a successful garage sale along with online sales. Hubby took 3 bags to goodwill


Ava August 24, 2023 at 1:45 pm

Welcome back. Don’t overdo now. Take it slow.


Katy August 24, 2023 at 4:29 pm

Thanks, I’m trying my best to do not too much.


Marie-Josée August 24, 2023 at 4:51 pm

I am happy to hear from you and learn that you are back home recovering. I checked your website yesterday to see if you had written an update and I was a bit worried. Wonderful to read that your hubby was well enough to help your sister settle into her new home.


Jennifer August 24, 2023 at 5:31 pm

Well, we all kind of knew your sister was going to get it since you were staying with her. BUT you completed her home repair list so I’m guessing it was worth it to her, once she feels better anyway. Glad you are at least home to get better now.


Selena August 24, 2023 at 7:11 pm

Glad you are back home and on the mend. Looks like your area isn’t in the heat dome – it has been quite toasty in my neck of the woods. You make plans and happens. Your trip wasn’t a total bust and better than being in a medical facility (my opinion of doctors is at its all time low after being treated like dirt at not one but two facilities).
So take-r-easy and get back to fighting shape. The more sane and productive residents of the US, the better.


Christine August 24, 2023 at 7:48 pm

Glad you’re both home safely. I’m so sorry your trip wasn’t the trip you planned for it to be but I’m glad you got to spend time with your sister. Just being together for 30 happy years is cause for celebration. Best wishes for at least 30 more.


Ecoteri August 24, 2023 at 8:04 pm

@Katy, so glad to get the update on your status – even if it isn’t all rosy, at least you are home safe with your own bed to greet you. I hate to admit that I, too, had a bit of a worry going on. Not that worry does any good, but still…
Now that your husband has whetted his enthusiasm for blasting through a long list of handy-person chores, I am wondering what you are contemplating adding to the list at home?
I seem to find my list just gets longer … I cross one thing out and am reminded of two things to add…. go figure….


Marilyn August 24, 2023 at 9:33 pm

I know just what you mean about the household To-Do List. Sometimes, it gets plain overwhelming. Today, I took a complete break from it all, read a book, watched a tv show with my husband, talked on the phone with my sisters and did not even look at my ever-expanding list of chores.


Marilyn August 24, 2023 at 9:39 pm

Katy, thank you for the update. So glad to hear you are both home. Hope you are completely well soon.


Bee August 25, 2023 at 4:33 am

I’m glad you were on the mend! The tiredness and the brain fog can last a while. I know we try to avoid medical advice on this blog, but this is pretty benign. Under the advice of a physician, I took a B-complex vitamin after coming down with Covid for about 90 days. I do believe the B6 and B12 really helped my energy level return to normal. It was especially important since my taste buds were affected, and I wasn’t eating well. Ice cream three times a day is not a balanced diet


Vickey September 3, 2023 at 5:44 am

B vitamins make sense, since our immune system draws on them heavily.


Kim August 25, 2023 at 5:02 am

We both had rebound covid after taking paxlovid so I’m thinking it’s a lot higher than 10% recurrence rate IMO. My rebound case was much worse but my husband did ok but took him until day 20 to get negative test. Still have the nagging dry cough for both us but sense of smell is finally coming back! You got a ton of stuff done for having been sick, if I showered and put different pajamas on most days I counted that as a win! Glad you made it home safe and are on the mend.


Maureen August 25, 2023 at 10:02 am

We were on vacation in Europe the past 2 weeks and luckily none of us came down with anything, which is rare in my case.

And when I did have Covid, I tested positive for 4 weeks even though I was feeling 100% after a week. And I’ve heard several people had the same issue.

I’m sorry it ruined your planned vacation. But at least you got to do some things in NYC.


Mati August 27, 2023 at 2:39 am

I would love to see a pic of that mirror, if/when your sister’s up for it.

So glad you’re home and comfortable. Sometimes these odd and difficult experiences are so much more memorable than smooth sailing. Here’s to another 30!


Cindy in the South August 27, 2023 at 3:20 am

Oh Katy. Virtual hugs. Please rest a lot.


Katy August 27, 2023 at 12:05 pm

Thank you. Of course I’m stupidly not resting as my husband suddenly had the energy to clean and organize the basement and I’d be a fool to not support that choice! Seriously, we unearthed our son’s diaper pail, which had been hiding at the back of closet for 22 years!


Jean C August 27, 2023 at 5:46 pm

Lol – the diaper pail. Totally understand going with the momentum once you start a “clean out the XYZ part if the house”. Once I am on a roll, it is hard to stop and I love the feeling of accomplishment. So glad to hear you are safely hime – had been wondering. Thanks for update.


Katy August 28, 2023 at 7:52 am

I’m keeping the diaper pail! It was an ingenious design that twisted shut at the top to hold in odors. If I’ve held onto it for this long I can keep it for another ten years or however long until it’s useful again.


Coral Clarke August 27, 2023 at 5:56 pm

So sorry to hear about the Covid, x2! I travelled from Brisbane, Australia to Chennai , India, last year for my bonus grandson’s wedding to his beautiful Tail fiancée. ( Against doctors advice, I had lower back osteoporotic fractures, but I wasn’t going to miss it it! I’m intolerant ( rather than allergic) to cumin and turmeric, so I had to skip my normal travel pleasure of immersing myself in local foods, but it was SO worth it! However, 2 days after I returned , I was diagnosed with Covid, after congratulating myself on my exemplary mask wearing on the plane! Happily, I got to have it in my own bed, and antivirals reduced the impact.
Wishing you a speedy recovery, Katy!!


Katy August 28, 2023 at 7:50 am

I’m so glad you were able to go to India for the wedding, sorry that Covid followed you home.


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