Linda and John Cinnamon posed beside Linda’s grandfather’s tractor in June of 2020. File Photo

WINCHESTER – In Rural Ontario the sense of urgency about the pandemic is often left by the wayside.

The news about its progress across the province is a daily reminder of the seriousness of the virus, but most rural residents have never seen it in action; and following restrictions aimed at stopping the virus becomes an intellectual exercise for many.

However, John Cinnamon (who farms just a few kilometres north of Winchester) and his wife Linda have come face to face with the virus and can testify to its seriousness.

It’s real, its here and it’s no picnic.

He posted his experience on Facebook. “It was a good idea to let people know it is here, it’s not a farce and it’s not a joke.”

Cinnamon survived it even though being over 70 years old, he was a perfect candidate for the virus to do its worse.

In early March he complained of a stomachache and never-ending headache.

After a fair amount of arm-twisting from his children and wife Linda, he gave in and went to the Winchester District Memorial Hospital for Covid testing.

Looking back, he is glad he gave into his family’s urging.

“I’m glad that they did,” said Cinnamon.

“I thought the stomachache could be the result of the some of the medication I am on, so I stopped them for 24 hours but it did not help, it got worse,” he said.

“I did not think I had Covid. I had a stomachache. It was not like I could not breath.

I decided to humour everybody and go get the test.”

Much to his surprise his tests came back positive and he was ordered to isolate himself in his home as the virus raged in his body.

“The doctor phoned me the next day and said I have Covid. They did not wait for me to find out about it online. The treatment was to be isolated in his home and in a separate room from his wife while the virus ran its course. My wife catered to me hand over fist.”

The doctor said his Covid infection was a low-grade type.

“If it was high grade I would have been in the hospital real quick,” Cinnamon said.

The virus seemed to be content causing havoc with his stomach and head.

Two weeks of bed rest and solitary confinement resulted in his body fighting off the virus. He was virus free but was left incredibly weak.

“I am tired and it took a lot out of me.”

He has no idea about where he could have caught the virus and his wife Linda did not get it.

“I do not know why I was spared. I will be 74 on July 18. I‘m at the right age for a more serious reaction to the virus.”

The health department called him every day as they checked up on his symptoms.

After two weeks of living in isolation from his wife and family, he was declared better.

He credits much of his success against the virus to his wife who looked after him.

“She catered to me left and right. She was the one looking after me.”

He did not think he was dying. He had terrible headaches and stomachaches.

“I would sleep but then wake up with a fever.”

Cinnamon noted he was never out of breath. He waited the virus out but it was not easy.

Cinnamon said, “I would not wish that on my worst enemy. A few people have asked me if I will still get vaccinated when my times comes since my body has already rejected it. I will take the vaccine when the time comes. Before I was a little leery about getting the vaccination but now, I am ready. I will be there.”

As weak as he is, Cinnamon is anxious to get ready for spring on the farm.

“I am glad to get it behind me before I start spring’s work. We have seed corn coming in that I will need to start unloading. It will take a while to get back in shape.”