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What's happening in your U.S. community?

There's a thread going for local news from RS members who live in or currently are in Europe but as this virus thing has expanded, it would be interesting to hear from members across the U.S. too.

I'm listening to the end of a long press conference with the Governor, Education Commissioner and some other state officials of my state (MN) regarding temporary closure of all MN K-12 schools from 3/18 - 3/27. As simply as I can put it, it is sort of a "calm before the storm" dress rehearsal should schools need to close for a much longer period of time. Also to nail down a working plan that could be quickly and efficiently executed should there be a future pandemic even more severe than the one we're experiencing now.

As the Governor put it, there has never been a comprehensive, tested plan for long-term shutdown of our schools, should that need occur. Given the current situation, they don't want to wait until a critical point, should there be one, to have to figure it out on the fly.

“My top priority as Governor is the safety of Minnesotans. As a former teacher, and father of two teenage kids, I’m especially focused on the safety of our children.” said Governor Walz. “I am ordering the temporary closure of schools so educators can make plans to provide a safe learning environment for all Minnesota students during this pandemic. Closing schools is never an easy decision, but we need to make sure we have plans in place to educate and feed our kids regardless of what’s to come.”

"The executive order requires schools to provide care for elementary-age children of health care professionals, first responders, and other emergency workers during previously planned school days."

....Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan. "This decision was made with children and families in mind, as well as our educators, to best support our schools and educational system in the weeks and months ahead and make sure that we have a plan in place for our kids who rely on school for meals and other critical needs." This includes remote learning plans for all areas of the state, including those with limited internet services.

Make sense to me. No, it won't be easy but I give them high marks for the many bases they've taken into consideration and creative solutions they'll be testing to try and cover them. Too bad the airports didn't have a plan in place to avoid the chaos we're seeing right now, eh?

Posted by
140 posts

I’m heartened to see the governors stepping up, and think my governor in Maryland has done well so far. I’m in a suburb of DC and people were definitely panic shopping, but 99.99% of people have been cordial. I’ve seen a number of people offering to help others on the nextdoor neighborhood website. It gives me great hope to know my community will pull together and help each other through.

I work for feds and our agency planning and response was too slow and somewhat chaotic due to the lack of direction or urgency from the top down. But it Finally got into gear Thursday and everyone who is able is teleworking for the foreseeable future. our IT folks have been working in overdrive to make sure we can continue to serve the public.

I am worried about my mom in Texas as it will be hard to get to her if she needs help. Hearing about possible restrictions on domestic flights has me wondering if I still have the stamina I did in my 20s to drive straight through.

Posted by
1790 posts

In Los Angeles - not enough being done to combat the spread of the virus. Yesterday I was talking to my friend (over the phone) who is a Virologist conducting research at UCLA, and he was quite dismayed at the lack of social distancing in the city. Especially with all the St. Patrick's day revelers this weekend, the bars/pubs near UCLA were all full last night, which certainly does not bode well for "flattening the curve". He estimated there was around 100,000 cases of COVID-19 in the USA already, the majority have gone undetected due to a lack of testing and initially mild symptoms.

Posted by
2903 posts

Washington (the state)
All schools closed for 6 weeks starting Tuesday.
Gatherings over 250 banned.
Most public places closing or already closed.
Public being urged to stay home and practice social distancing.
Church was live streamed this morning and I stayed home and participated in that manner.

Posted by
335 posts

Seattle:

Things are tense, but calm. Lots of empty shelves in TJ's and Safeway, but there's still food available. Streets aren't deserted, but a lot of the restaurants have either closed or are mostly empty.

I'm not so worried about the virus as I am about the economic impact that it's having on local businesses. I suspect a lot of places are going to fail. That's going to have a far greater impact on this area than the illness itself.

-- Mike Beebe

Posted by
4153 posts

All schools in Washington State are closed, gatherings >250 prohibited, no visitors to nursing homes, people urged to work from home if possible, etc. If you don't know the drill in your state, you will soon. We had the first US case and the first big cluster in one nursing home. I live in a retirement community where all group activities have been canceled, the nursing home and assisted living locked down, the restaurant and fitness center closed. The rest of us are being discouraged from any kind of travel, even road trips. We take walks and wave to each other from a safe distance. Last night we had dinner with a friend in a nearly empty restaurant downtown. Plays and concerts and the like cancelled, and pretty much all group meetings and social events. Thursday I went to a graveside funeral, the reception was postponed TBD.

Governor Inslee and local officials have stayed on top of this. School districts are providing "grab and go" breakfasts and lunches. Seems like lots of teamwork and solidarity, I hope it lasts as this regimen will be getting old soon. As we separate from actual human contact, we depend more on TV and internet for info and entertainment -- not a healthy development I think. Thanks for this thread, Kathy. I hope everyone stays well.

Posted by
375 posts

"I'm not so worried about the virus as I am about the economic impact that it's having on local businesses."
It's definitely a concern. One way to address it is to buy a gift card to the local coffee shop or restaurant/cafe you patronize. And to the extent possible, get your necessities from your neighborhood store, not the big boxes.

Posted by
6061 posts

I want to stress that this is one data point and a snapshot in time. Things have changed even from a week ago, and will continue to change.

As of today, 3/15/20:

  • 2 cases confirmed in my immediate community (not region - just my city of 115,000 or so)
  • Restaurants and bars are still hopping and have not caught on to any social distancing
  • The local Trader Joes had conga-sized lines and looks like a hurricane went through (no eggs and other products)
  • Patience is getting tested (I almost saw a fight break out at Trade Joes, which is normally an easy-going, fun place to shop)
  • Only yesterday did all the Smithsonian Museums close (will have major tourism impacts)
  • Cherry Blossom Festival events cancelled (again, major tourism impacts)
  • Metro (our transit system) and regional AMTRAK curtailing service (major local and regional impacts)
  • Entire region is shutting down slowly (huge economic impacts)
  • Local airport (DCA) nearly deserted yesterday (I had to pick up SO from work trip)
  • Lots of people taking to trails to walk and bike ride, walk dogs, etc.
  • Less traffic on roads
  • Schools all shut down; parents will be at home with kids
  • More telework from home
  • Congress in session (normally in recess now) to pass emergency funding
  • COVID has taken all the wind out of the Democratic debate schedule, primaries, and campaign
Posted by
943 posts

In NM, with 4 reported cases last week (there are more now), schools closed (although they are orchestrating food for the thousands of students who depend on it), no gatherings, campgrounds closed (I and several friends considered going camping with our kids now that they are home, alas), and much more. On par with other states. In CO, ski areas are closed and they are restricting movement across borders.
On a personal level, my 17 yo has been studying intensely for two months for the SAT on 3/14. It was canceled on 3/12 when the schools were closed. Her sport canceled its season at least until June, and because its indoor, its likely she can't train in it for several months. My husband is an ER doc, and his hospital has a C-19 patient in the ICU, so we are making plans for when he gets exposed. His colleagues are all intending to go to a hotel if they get exposed. We were considering putting a tent in the backyard. But of course, he will get exposed at some point without knowing it, and then we have all been exposed (because the incubation period is up to 5 days, you all know this right?)
Watching this from the 'front lines', as the spouse of someone who is in the thick of communications about protocols and prognosis for the spread, I appreciate how important the restrictions are. The fact that our governor closed all the schools when we only had 4 cases was spot on.

Posted by
4857 posts

"His colleagues are all intending to go to a hotel if they get exposed. . . "

Hotel workers are people too.

Posted by
943 posts

Absolutely. And I mentioned this. That there should be a plan for healthcare workers to quarantine and not have others exposed. A cleaning team in hazmat suits to disinfect select hotels. Hence the tent in our backyard...

Posted by
73 posts

From Orange County, California: The area Health Dept reports 14 Covid-19 cases. Of those, 11 are travel related, 2 person to person, 1 community spread, no deaths. Some local school districts have closed ahead of our spring break. Our identified cases are lower than nearby LA County so far.

Shoppers look to be still trying to stock up (some may be hoarding). I haven't seen anyone acting pushy, most are polite. For weeks now shelves of paper goods, water, sanitizer, some canned foods have empty shelves. Today our Trader Joes has reduced hours of 9AM to 7 PM. They were only allowing 5 customers at a time to enter the store in intervals to keep it from becoming too crowded. This seemed to be working. I was happy to see them limiting the purchase of 2 items each of packaged goods to save some for everybody. Ralphs Supermarket reduced hours are 8 Am to 8Pm. Last I heard they were only limiting certain items to 5 each. As others have said, there is no hand sanitizer or hand wipes in any store I've looked for them.

The message seems to be to practice Social Distancing, but what that means seems to be different depending on the community.

Posted by
51 posts

Florida

I live in the Tampa area. We haven't had very many cases here, I think under 10. There is speculation that because it's hot now (86 today) that that is slowing community spread. However, that doesn't mean you still can't get it and transmit it so measures still have been taken as far as closing schools, banning large gatherings and encouraging social distancing and proper hygiene protocol. Even our Farmer's Markets are closed until the end of March. I was in Publix today and other than lots of bread being gone from the shelves, I did not notice any other shortages and the market was not crowded.

This is hurricane country. We are used to being stuck at home with the added benefit of no electricity.

Posted by
645 posts

Schools are closed here in Oregon. According to the news, many smaller children will be in daycare, causing me to wonder if anything is gained by closing the younger grades.

Friday, shelves in the grocery were bare of paper products, cleaning products, canned goods, and cheap meat. The grocery was packed with people getting the last stuff there. People were polite and kind to each other, if anything better behaved than normal Sunday afternoons. The check-out clerk said the 24 hour grocery was closing at 9 pm to restock. And yes she thought they would have paper products in particular to restock with. I haven't been out shopping since.

We are staying in more than normal. Ordinarily, we'd be antiquing, book shopping or something else today.

Our personal problems are more affected by what is happening in the nation as a whole. My mother is currently hospitalized (not for the virus) and probably getting out tomorrow. Ordinarily, I'd fly out to help her for a few days. This time, I'm sitting on the ticket to see if she absolutely needs me, not just would be more comfortable if I were there. My biggest fear is bringing her the virus via the plane travel. She's over 80 and my coming might not be the best thing I can do for her. More selfishly, I worry about U.S. planes being grounded and getting stuck in Colorado without a vehicle.

My brother can reach her by car in eight hours or so, but is also worried about infecting her. His office in New Mexico is considering an employee travel ban.

My youngest was coming home from college to study remotely starting next week, but this morning the college changed its mind and is sending student's home tomorrow. So she is scrambling to pack and get a flight. I'm working on getting our internet speed increased for her use and also finding a desk with more work surface for her room.

Posted by
1834 posts

Nashville: all the typical empty shelves on items that are canned/frozen/pasta, etc, no toilet paper, hand sanitizer, etc. schools closed...Vanderbilt University required students to move out of dorms with less than a week's notice, YMCAs canceled classes, other universities suspending classes for a week or two then to reevaluate, etc. We see the # of cases climbing steadily each day, but statewide last count was 39, so early stages.

Just received an email flash that Mayor Cooper has an emergency meeting this afternoon with Health Department to mandate a closing of ALL bars, limit seating at restaurants to 50% (cap of 100 regardless). That will thin crowds on the famous Broadway downtown honkey-tonk section, which has remained packed with people (who are likely mostly tourists).

Warnings have been issued repeatedly, but so many think what they heard the leader of our nation say (when he originally spoke) is true...nothing to worry. I have heard many young professionals (who are otherwise very bright people) say it is no big deal, only old people have to worry.

So, good our local leaders are taking these next steps for prevention and as we all know "to flatten the curve."

As of this typing, the big CMA-Fest is still a go (in June, so I anticipate (but clearly a guess on my part) it will be canceled sooner to then), and the St. Jude Rock and Roll Marathon (late April) is still a go (but I guess related indoor activities will be eliminated or canceled...time will tell). Public programming at many tourist sites eliminated.

Community support and commitment by 1,000s and 1,000s of volunteers is on-going to help tornado victims in Nashville and the counties to the east that were impacted. That effort will be sustained for a really long time....damage and loss significant (structures/lives)

Posted by
11417 posts

I've read all of the posts and thank you for taking the time to share.
Keep 'em coming, OK? We don't need to isolate virtually.

Posted by
4857 posts

I just got a notice from my bank saying that they will be operating drive-through only starting tomorrow at all branches. This is one of the larger banks in the area. I can see a run on cash coming.

Posted by
296 posts

In Massachusetts, our governor finally ordered all public and private schools closed until April 7 (many schools in the suburbs were closed already). All restaurants and bars are ordered to be closed except for take-out or delivery through April 17. Gatherings of 25+ people are banned, except for pharmacies and grocery stores. He also ordered all hospitals to postpone elective surgeries to ensure availability of workers and hospitals for dealing with coronavirus. The postponement of the Boston Marathon was announced a few days ago. St. Patrick's day parade was cancelled. Seven counties in Massachusetts are reporting community transmission (of unknown origin). Many private employers have asked employees to work from home (including mine until further notice). My local BJ's is full of people and empty of almost everything. This morning people were filling up two shopping carts at a time!

Posted by
893 posts

Everyone over 65 in California is restricted to their homes. Bars and schools are closing, restaurants open but limited to 1/2 capacity, which makes no sense now. A young friend was just told to finish her beer because the bar was closing in 15 minutes. We now have one confirmed case in our county with a few tests still pending. We all know one case means many more cases are out there.

Edit: the language is more or less that the over 65 should stay in their homes. So if not a mandate, people will do as they please.

Posted by
3114 posts

I can see a run on cash coming.

Why? The banks are not closing and all electronic payments are still moving without issue. ACH payroll posted fine.

I tried to tip the restaurant delivery guy today and he reacted like I was trying to hand him a live rattlesnake. What good will cash be if no one wants to handle it?

Posted by
4857 posts

Mark, for the same reason there is no toilet paper on the shelves. In panic mode, people accumulate things they think will be in short supply. And there is still a large segment of the population that depends on cash, despite the tech-dependent alternatives. Just my semi-serious guess - I'll be happy if it doesn't happen.

Posted by
10675 posts

No toilet paper to speak of, but I am one of those nuts that doesnt like to shop and I buy for a month at a time, and for things like soap and toilet paper, 6 months at a time.

The grocery store shelves are a bit bare in places. Again, something I dont understand. But fortunately the restaurants get their food from another source and they are all open so I dont have to start cooking yet.

Otherwise, everyone freaked out, but life as normal.

Posted by
1504 posts

a bit more on Oregon situation, in addition to what Jen said above about all public schools being closed until March 31, until April 8 the following also applies under Governor Brown's executive order:

  • All large gatherings over 250 people are canceled. The advice covers sports events, churches, weddings, conventions, and fundraisers (during peak primary race season). People have been asked to make events virtual where possible.
  • Individuals in high risk populations (those over 60 years of age, or those with an underlying health condition) are asked to avoid social and community gatherings of more than ten (10) people
  • Workplace recommendations including social distancing, encouraging telework where possible, limit all travel (car/air), and guidelines on cleaning surfaces and posting signage about hand washing.
  • Significant restrictions are placed on assisted living and nursing homes - no visitors, only essential personnel, screening of all staff for symptoms.

On the up side, almost every public school is offering packed breakfast/lunch to any child aged 1-18, regardless if they are public school students. And a local senior services agency is delivering milk, eggs, toilet paper, and soap to any person over 65 who asks for help, no questions asked.

An outing today to a local grocery store proved interesting - usually open 24 hours, they had closed from 10p-8a to restock shelves and clean surfaces. By 9:30 a.m., there were no paper products remaining (toilet paper, kleenex, paper towels) but most shelves were relatively well stocked (with the exception of hand sanitizer, wipes, rubbing alcohol, latex gloves, and some fresh produce). Checkout lines were enormous but generally folks were polite and orderly (I heard tales of fist fights at Costco on Saturday - my goodness). The nearby liquor store (Oregon is a control state) was doing a brisk business at 10 a.m.

Be safe and well.

Posted by
1869 posts

Thanks Kathy for starting this thread!
As my fellow Washingtonians reported up thread, I echo similar observations. The Sunday Seattle Times headline was "Silence in Seattle." Seattle is not empty. But Seattle is eerie. There are cars on the road. But there is no traffic. I am a Seattle native and have never seen anything like this. Restaurants are closing or looking at creative ways to stay in business. One of our favorite restaurants sent an email promoting 30% off for take-out service. Our local grocery chain was like a ghost town this morning. The shelves were low on everyday staples. As far as Washington's banning of gatherings over 250, I think this will decrease very soon. Kudos to Gov. Jay Inslee and the DOH for there proactive measures in containing this crisis.

Edited to add Following the Presidential Debate it was reported that there is talk for a National effort for no gatherings of 50+ people for the next 8 weeks. The rationale is to do this now rather than later!

Posted by
3304 posts

I'm in Long Beach, CA. So far we have 6 diagnosed cases, all hospitalized. Our town is somewhat locked down. You can still go to the market and guy groceries but other than that bars, restaurants, gyms, etc. are closed. Our mayor is following the mayor of Los Angeles who has just announced that any theater, stage production, or performance space be closed. Our governor has told everyone over the age of 60 to self-quarantine. Filming of every sort has come to a stand still - even tapings of TV shows that usually have live audiences are empty...shows are being shot with no audience - very strange. It's earily quiet. Zero cars have gone down my residential street today except one FedEx truck. Grocery stores very picked over...our local Trader Joes looked like they had just put in the shelving to open a new store. Absolutely empty of most things - except frozen macaroons and other deserts and things like syrup. Plenty of wine and liquor left! I waited in line for 40 minutes to pay for groceries at a large grocery store on Friday morning - they were passing out toilet paper from the loading dock in limited quantities. Odd things were gone like salted butter. All of my neighbors are hunkering down. I can hear kids in back yards but haven't seen anyone all day. I teach science so have been posting learning activities and lessons online for my students that they will start working on tomorrow. A parent at my school tested positive so we instantly shut down as did the rest of my district - we are not allowed to go onto campus to get anything we may have left - it's forcing me to be quite creative with what I'm having my students do! We are supposed to be staying closed until April 5 but I have a feeling this is going to be extended. All the while I am trying to get my son home from London - his flights keep getting cancelled which is very frustrating. Trying again for a British Airways flight...they seem to have a lot going out of Heathrow. I'm a bit nerve wracked right now but am taking deep breaths. This too shall pass.

Posted by
11417 posts

Bar and restaurant closures - which have not been ordered in my state - will be devastating to both the businesses and their employees. Most of these businesses can't afford to pay waitstaff that aren't working. Even if they could, most waitstaff can't make ends meet without their tips (and please, let's not start in on whether the custom is right or wrong; it is what it is at this point.) A large segment of U.S. waitstaff is young and without enough discretionary income to begin with to have much aside to cover their losses and to stock up on necessities for a long period of isolation at home... assuming they can even afford their rent without income coming in.

Along that line, at least one city mayor has ordered a temporary suspension of evictions countywide and/or shutoff of utilities for non-payment. I think more of them will probably fall in line.

This corona virus episode is "weird" to me. I have never seen countries react this way before. I remember when AIDS first came about. It was scary at first because no one knew anything about it. Then, with research and information over time - public anxiety settled down. I have no idea what it would be like to live in a war-torn country either. But, I have talked with others who have.

The problem with corona virus is that it is fast acting. That makes things hard for researchers developing testing and treatments for it. Even harder for the medical industry to equip for it.
As all things else ... This, too, shall pass. In the mean time - there is beer, ice cream, chocolate, the pets.

Posted by
1869 posts

Kathy, as you reported, Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkin ordered a moratorium on rent-related residential evictions in wake of the Coronavirus outbreak. Source: The Seattle Times, 3/13/20, updated 3/14/20.

Posted by
1065 posts

In NY, NJ and CT all bars and restaurants are to be closed indefinitely after 8 pm tonight.

Posted by
10675 posts

Bar and restaurant closures - which have not been ordered in my state
- will be devastating to both the businesses and their employees.

What is generally overlooked by people who just aren't trained in the topic is the secondary effects of the decisions that are made. If the governments don't show a lot of foresight there could be many more deaths as a result of the actions taken than the disease would have ever created.

So far, at the national level its my impression that a balanced approach is in the works. With smaller governments with less educated people and a even more political atmosphere, I am not as comfortable. But its why our Federalist system works so well. We can make a bunch of small mistakes and still get by. So, at a minimum, do everything your government says to do, be positive, and sure, do those other things that make you more comfortable too. But know, the experts are working on it and you arent always going to understand their approach.

Posted by
4053 posts

We live on Coastal Georgia. It is not a large population center, but one with a port, Federal Law Enforcement Training Center and some tourism. We have very good medical care available locally.

Schools were closed today. Late last week, I ventured out to have my car serviced. I was the only customer at our local Ford dealer and they completing my oil change, tire rotation, systems check in 20 minutes. Then I went to my barber shop, got a haircut. I was the only customer there, it had reduced staff. Grocery stores are busy, but not overrun.

A week ago, a neighbor went to our local Sam's Club and couldn't get inside it was so crowded. I guess toilet paper was there.
My wife went to the post office and traffic was very light. Few persons out. Understand most restaurants are only open for takeout.
Of course, Waffle House is still serving customers.

I had a great walk of my neighborhood, 3.2 miles and only ran into one walker with their dog. Usually, I see more persons.

It seems that many are staying home.

Posted by
11417 posts

Bar and restaurant closures - which have not been ordered in my
state....

As we speak, MN officials mandating all of them closed statewide by 5:00 PM tomorrow with the exception of drive-thru, takeout or delivery. The order also includes theaters, nightclubs, coffeeshops, and other public entertainment centers (there goes the rest of our bowling season) and a bunch of other businesses.

Posted by
763 posts

Closed all oklahoma schools til April 6th. We are on spring break this week. All fast foods restaurants ie mcdonalds , chick-filet are closing sit down areas, only walk-in to carry out and drive thrus are open, some grocery stores reducing store hours, shelves empty on some items. Some of our casinos are closing.

Getting pretty scary around here.

Posted by
7109 posts

This is what’s happening in my area, and specifically in Marin County where i live...

Six Counties in the SF Bay area have announced today a Shelter in Place Order:

“In a dramatic and unprecedented move reflecting growing alarm over the rapidly spreading coronavirus pandemic, six Bay Area counties Monday announced sweeping shelter-in-place restrictions effectively confining millions of residents to their homes for three weeks with exceptions for essential work, food or other needs.

The new orders by health officers in Santa Clara, San Mateo, San Francisco, Alameda, Contra Costa and Marin counties are criminally enforceable and
go well beyond the stepped-up calls for increased “social distancing” from the nation’s capital, evoking lockdowns in parts of hard-hit Europe.”

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.mercurynews.com/2020/03/16/coronavirus-six-bay-area-counties-to-shelter-in-place/amp/

Posted by
415 posts

Riddle me this- at two stores (grocery) this afternoon they were WAY low on bags of ice cubes. Why would you hoard ice cubes ? Anyone out there with a kid/grandkid in college studying psychology that could make an interesting topic for a term paper/thesis.

Posted by
11417 posts

Bob, maybe people are using ice for transporting larger amounts of frozen foods by cooler for longer distances?

Posted by
51 posts

Dallas-

Three weekends ago I started building up my 2 week stockpile of essentials, when there was still stuff on the shelves.

All nonessential places are closed or at a minimum don’t have sit down seating. They shoulda have started at least 1 if not 2 weeks ago.

Think of how much this has spread during St Patrick’s Day celebrations.

I take train to work, It’s noticeably empty. I work in a hospital. We were told for the next 6-8 weeks PTO was frozen and existing requests may have to be modified. We were told to have a backup plan if we have kids or anyone elderly to care for.

Posted by
330 posts

Please keep these posts coming as they provide insights we don't get on the news.

I am in Maui and woke up on Sunday 5 am with a non-virus-related medical emergency. At the hospital ER, a guard took our temperatures before we could go in. I was surprised to see that the waiting room was NOT filled with coughing, feverish people - only one guy sleeping in a chair. I was taken care of right away and all the sanitation procedures seemed pretty thorough. (I am OK, don't worry, by the way.)

So while we hear about the medical system being possibly overwhelmed, we are not there yet in many places.

Stay healthy and safe, friends!

Posted by
484 posts

MA announced state of emergency March 10. Universities and colleges had already begun announcing closings and extended delays.

MA announcements came last week. Like everywhere they are constantly changing.
All K-12 schools mandatory closure 3 weeks, Boston city schools 6 weeks.
University and colleges the minimum mandatory 3 weeks or longer, they’re all different.
No gatherings of 25 on Friday now down to 10 people.

Restriction non essential travel going into effect soon, meaning food and pharmacy only.
Only emergency care gets you into hospitals, clinics, etc.
Restrictive public transportation on all modes.
All sports at all levels closed almost two weeks ago.
Visitors for nursing homes, assisted living, senior housing only allowed for dying/deaths,
this started last week.

Beverage & Food, take out-delivery- pick up only.
Most Businesses pick up and delivery only likely to change.
Construction sites closed.
Theaters, museums, libraries, gyms, and more closed and more to come.

Supermarket shelves emptied by Saturday am, I went back Monday morning and slowly resupplying
Once the hoarding and panic settles down, people stocked up, we can return to get what we need.

The state asked over a week ago to stop all non essential travel...

Our case level continues to increase. The majority of cases originate from European travel by 3 students and 2 adults who took School sponsored winter breaks Feb 10-24 ( two separate schools); the other virus source you may have read about is from the Biogen conference held in Boston Feb22-23.
The Europe travel involved Italy, France, Spain for one school and just Italy for the other.

We do have a percentage now of cases in MA and New England undetermined. Likely people who just going about their normal day who encountered areas/people of exposure. Since the virus has so many unknowns. I see it like this. People land at airport in February from Europe-flight crew/passengers/airport personnel, all the public restrooms, businesses, restaurants are used, people travel home, they return to work and school. Think of the exposure level especially when you don’t have any symptoms of any kind of even a regular cold, etc.

I see why people are scared. No vaccine, people are testing positive without symptoms. It’s human nature. We’ll get through this. This too shall pass.

Posted by
695 posts

I live in Eastern Washington .... no identified cases in my county Benton or Franklin yet. We do know of one patient in a local hospital - I believe he was in Spokane which does have cases there. I'm confident that this will change and we will see our cases rise.

When our Governor closed the Seattle area most people here didn't blink but when closed schools statewide our area finally saw people RAID the stores - thankfully I was an "early adapter" and shopped early and not in a panic-mode.

NO banks are running out of cash.... maybe someone needs to take a money and banking class on how money moves. UGH. I work for a bank.

Posted by
10675 posts

I see why people are scared. No vaccine, people are testing positive
without symptoms. It’s human nature. We’ll get through this. This too
shall pass.

Diane, ditto

Posted by
3118 posts

In our Manhattan neighborhood, our grocery stores are stocked. The fruit and vegetable stands on many of our corners are stocked with produce as they are every day. Toilet paper and hand sanitizer are sometimes in stock depending upon the store. No matter what people see on TV with NYC having long lines at Trader Joe’s, our neighborhood grocery stores don’t have long lines out the door and around the corner. The cashier lines take about 10 to 15 minutes which is much longer than normal. If you go early morning, it is quicker. We buy from grocery stores and the fruit/vegetable stands nearly every day because we don’t buy food in bulk. We have no room for that.

Restaurants, bars, and cafés now only do delivery and pick up. The liquor board has amended the rules and now allows restaurants to include alcoholic beverages with its pick up and delivery service which is important for them as much of their profits derive from the bar.

The shelter in place mandates in the San Francisco area are not happening in New York City no matter what the news is saying. While the mayor is getting in front of microphones telling us to prepare for a decision within the next 48 hours of our being sequestered in our apartments, the governor has stepped in and said the mayor is absolutely wrong. Unlike California, only the governor of NY can mandate a shelter in place directive and that would affect the entire state. Individual cities or counties cannot enact shelter in place edicts and the mayor knows that. And press conferences, The governor has said he is adamantly against shelter in place, explained why and chastised the mayor for scaremongering and creating more fear by releasing rumors of a possible decision to implement shelter in place when he has no authority to do so.

The subways and buses are running. The subways are not as crowded. Construction is going on just as it always has and frankly I’ve never been so happy to hear the racket of construction. It is a sound of normal life.

Some stores are open while others have closed. Some hairdresser and manicure salons are open while others have closed. Mine are closed.

The New York Public Library is closed until at least March 31. All public schools are closed at least through April 20.

Museums, theatre, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, nightclubs, and the like are closed. Gyms are now closed as of last night. Lots of people jogging this morning.

Tennis is still available in city parks and with this warmer weather, it is great.

Last, alternate side of the street parking rules are suspended for at least one week but people still need to feed the meters.

Posted by
2297 posts

In Birmingham, restaurants have been drive-thru only since Monday. No gym(the Y's are offering childcare to medical personnel and first responders), school, libraries, church. We are having a virtual choir rehearsal tonight, virtual fellowship group and virtual Bible Study. Only 4 cases in my suburban county so far, 39 in Birmingham itself-what else will/can they close when it gets worse.? And it will get worse-people lined up at 7 this morning for drive-thru testing and the line was closed before 8:30. We suspect that most of them only have our lovely seasonal allergies. Husband and I walked at a state park today, which sensibly is still open. I didn't go anywhere yesterday. My daughter's trip to Savannah for a friend's bachelorette party this weekend was cancelled, but we are more concerned about her wedding and those of other friends whose weddings were scheduled for May.

A thank-you to those of you in MA whose cases were mostly caused by a certain biotech company-that's what caused my husband's business travel to be shut down completely. He cancelled $10,000 in plane tickets on Sunday night Mar 8.

As a former teacher, I can't resist this: for those of you who are math-avoiders, it's all about the rate of change of contagion-the slope of the line, which for curves is determined with calculus. AL is doing ok with that temporarily, US overall not good at all-increase of 1000 cases today compared to yesterday!

Posted by
2081 posts

I live near San Francisco and we are one of the counties that has been ordered to shelter in place as of Tuesday through April 7--bars and all non-essential shops are closed, restaurants open only for take-out or delivery, no movie theatres or any other kind of cultural spaces are open. We are to go out only for food, medical appointments (though the hospital just cancelled my mammogram), work in essential businesses and for exercise if we keep 6 ft between us and other people. I hear our governor is considering total lockdown and that would indeed be frightening. Schools in CA are likely to not re-open this spring.

I work for a moving company and we are considered essential--long distance household goods moves are still on-going but local office moves are being re-scheduled and I have no idea what's going on with our international division. I expect to be on a reduced schedule at some point and I figure that would be the universe's way of getting me a bit of time off since my May trip to Romania and Hungary sure isn't likely to happen. Fortunately I have plenty of hobbies to keep me occupied.

Posted by
3114 posts

As I am writing this, it is snowing in Denver. Probably going to get a foot of snow. News warned of possible power outages later because the snow is heavy and wet and there will be fairly high winds. When this normally happens, the stores get swamped by blizzard panic buying. I am hoping people have already panic bought enough. We shall see.

Grocery delivery from all sources here is completely booked out till next Tuesday, 03/24, with slots quickly disappearing. So I am heading out to pick up a few fresh things (hopefully) before the snow gets too deep. Friends have reported the stores are not too busy, mainly because they have nothing to sell. Several of the Safeway stores up in the mountains do still have a good amount of merchandise, they stocked up in anticipation of Spring Break skiers that are not arriving, but I'm not driving there in the current snow conditions.

I have had luck buying some groceries directly from the source, bypassing the grocery stores. Got 20 pounds of hamburger vis UPS yesterday from my favorite company. Ordered chocolate bars directly from Hershey for delivery Monday. Charmin was selling their new infinity roll for direct delivery, but no more. Will see what else I need that I can have shipped.

News this morning says the virus is now predicted to remain active in the US for at least 18 more months with waves of infection and not drop off like China has. I hope this is overly pessimistic or the vaccine at least is available before then.

Posted by
1834 posts

Not in my community.......but if you missed it on the morning news, Google "Sweet Caroline Boston" and listen to the guy's song with a play on words. CBS This Morning anchor, said he would substitute the words "hand sanitizer" in lieu of Sweet Caroline, which would work, too.

Very creative....gotta find ways to smile in today's world.

Posted by
244 posts

Utah

Our governor declared a state of Emergeny on the 5th it 6th but everything continued pretty much as normal. I work as a a head usher (my second “fun” job) in the county run theatres in Downtown Salt Lake. We put precautions in place and started to see a decline in attendance. Except at the tour of Dear Evan Hansen. We had nearly 2500 at that on the 11th. On the 12th Utah Symphony and Opera cancelled all performances in March. A little later the county closed all our theatres again until the end of March. I was preparing for that evening’s performance when that went through. We stayed at the theatre until the time the performance was scheduled to start to turn away patrons who missed the notification.

Since the 12th all restaurant dining rooms have closed. Some restaurants have closed altogether others are open for curbside and delivery. Movie theaters have closed. For my main job I work for a bank. I’m now working at home. Some of our branches are fully open, others are drive thru only and some are closed. The zoo closed on the 17th.

Utahns are the worst panic buyers in the country with grocery store sales increased 250% apparently double the rate of any other state. I suspect that is because all the Mormons who live here have been counseled for decades to have a year supply and they overdid their panic buying because they feel guilty that they don’t.

Then on top of everything else we had a 5.7 earthquake on Wednesday morning. There was some damage but no fatalities and no major injuries. The airport was closed for a few hours because a water main broke. It was my last day in the office and we spent several hours evacuated. When I got home my cats were hiding but nothing had even fallen over.

My cats are loving me being home all the time. I’m bored but ok with supplies and toilet paper.

Posted by
10675 posts

My office decided it best to close on Friday. I've been approached by a couple of employees to see if the company would support them in using Friday to shop and make deliveries to those that cant do it on their own. A beautiful thing to hear .. of course.

Posted by
1834 posts

Nashville
Now newly-announced mandatory stay-at-home order. Only essential businesses will be allowed to stay open after midnight tonight.

Confirmed cases of viruses continue to increase. Vanderbilt Medical has set up a special coronavirus (heated) treatment facility in one of their parking garages to be used "just in case."

For the past week, the streets in Nashville have looked like Christmas afternoon (with very little traffic).

Posted by
3118 posts

NYC update: The governor is putting the entire state into a “pause“. Only those businesses deemed “essential“ will be able to stay open after 8 PM tonight. Everybody else unless employed in an essential organization, is to work from home. We are encouraged to go outside to exercise as long as it is solo exercise like walking, jogging, cycling. No group activities like basketball or softball. Tennis looks to be allowed as it was not mentioned and we will find out when we play early one morning next week.

Grocery stores, greenmarkets, pharmacies, laundromats, dry cleaners, restaurants and bars for pick up and delivery only, convenience stores, gas stations, auto repair, hospitals, urgent care, emergency vet services, utilities, public transportation, cabs, hotels, airlines, hardware stores, doormen/building maintenance, construction, electricians, plumbers, etc.

Posted by
4857 posts

It seems like all the cities imposing these orders are following similar models with similar wording. There also seems to be a lot of wiggle room in the "essential" definition. The way I am interpreting it, is that anybody working in a non-essential service, office or retail business that would be in contact with the public, is required to stay (and work if they can) at home. People with jobs where they can maintain social distancing, such as lawncare, roofing, pest control, home construction, are ok to leave their homes to work. Is that the way you-all are seeing it?

Posted by
2297 posts

Stan, I think that's the way it's being interpreted here. Things(sit-down restaurants, hair and nail salons, gyms, retail stores) have been shut down in our area since Tue, but my husband was able to pick up his drycleaning yesterday and an employee's husband who works in the construction business is working normally. Dentists, etc. are closed but vets are still open-you leave your pet in its carrier at their door-no human pet parents are allowed inside their office. We are planning to do one drive-thru meal a week to help those businesses-we don't usually eat out much when we're at home. We are hoping that the state parks will remain open, but there were a lot of people there when my husband went yesterday so that may jeopardize them staying open.

Posted by
1435 posts

We’re in Las Vegas for the winter, but I was in the South Bay region of L.A. when things really started to shut down.

The week of Mar.9th in Las Vegas saw the shelves of water, hand sanitizer and TP disappearing. Our local Costco was stripped of any paper products and bottled water. I was surprised casinos were not sending employees around to wipe down the machines regularly. Supposedly, they had hand sanitizer “prominently” displayed but I would disagree with the “prominently”. We did not return to the casino.

Three of the South Bay region schools shuttered the week of the 16th through their spring break, April 12th. They announced on Friday, had teachers come in on Monday to get stuff and prepare for home-learning and went online Tuesday. Elementary kids have chrome books, so anyone that left theirs at school was able to do pick-up Monday. Doors closed.

Anyone who has been through LAX will appreciate this - left South Redondo Beach and was at my LAX gate in 30 minutes. There was no traffic on a Sunday afternoon, either on Century Blvd. or the airport drive. Hand sanitizer stations were in the terminal, but 2 out of 3 were inoperable. Social distancing was easy in the gate area.

The week of Mar.16-20 in Las Vegas was a different story. The closer the grocery store was to The Strip, the more stuff they had. One problem, in order to get staples, it requires more than one store. Two stores had no bread, one had no eggs. I met a mom trying to find distilled water for a child with sinus cancer. I was looking for one with croup who needs a humidifier in the desert. And, BTW, maybe that where the ice is going ‘cause if you read the directions for distilling water ...Schools closed, day cares closed and the craft aisle at Target is empty, too. My adult children are all trying to work at home, video-chatting with toddlers in the background doing their toddler thing.

On Wednesday, the governor announced a Declaration of Emergency for 30 days and all non-essential businesses are closed. MGM and Wynn properties had closed earlier in the week. Bars and restaurants were giving away perishable items. Driving through my local grocery parking lot this morning, people are carrying much smaller amounts. We live in an area predominantly 55+, which may account for stress buying. Grocery stores (and Costco) have gone to special hours for seniors, usually an hour before regular opening, and only a few at a time. The particular day and times change from one day to the next. The Strip is a ghost town. A UNLV photographer took photos for their archives and its online for anyone that’s interested. Even the neighborhood streets are quiet.

Posted by
11417 posts

Hi there, Julie from Salt Lake City!

Yep, I wondered about panic buying in your state given the large LDS community and that 1 year supply thingy.

I've been keeping some tabs on your state's "Mighty Five" and some nearby state parks and BLM trails, such as Fisher Towers near Moab, as they are our absolute favorite hiking locations in the United States, hands down. There looked to be some tension recently when the Springdale mayor (gateway to Zion N.P.) reportedly reasoned that, "Exploring the great outdoors, including Utah's national parks, may now be the safest vacation bet." (Salt Lake City Tribune, March 13th) but Moab's (Arches, Canyonlands Island in the Sky unit) Chief Medical Officer was petitioning the Governor to close all non-essential services in that town to discourage tourism. Their tiny 17-bed hospital, in a remote area, needs to focus all their resources on sick or injured locals versus visitors. Overload and the critically ill/injured have to be airlifted to Grand Junction, and being Moab is sort of a mecca for more extreme sports, they handle their share of injured rock climbers, slickrock bikers, etc. to begin with. Add the current, temporary revocation of park entry fees by NPS and they could be dealing with certain visitors getting up to all sorts of nonsense that could get them into trouble. Spend enough time in our parks and you'll know exactly what I mean!

https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/6811678-Moab-Regional-Hospital-Letter-to-Gov-Gary-Herbert.html

The Southeast Utah Health Dept. settled some of the issue for Moab (and Green River) by shutting down all restaurants, and all accommodations, including public and private campgrounds and dispersed BLM camping, for all but essential visitors within a 3-country area (Carbon, Emery and Grand). The National Parks in those areas are open but virtually all visitor services within them are closed. Same with services at Zion, Bryce and Capitol Reef. Editing to add: Looks like Forever Resort's Bryce Lodge is currently open but all Xanterra operated facilities at other U.S. parks are closed.

https://www.discovermoab.com

Julie, I LOVE your parks (although Utah's alcohol laws are interesting where post-hike libations are concerned!) so I sure hope people who ARE taking advantage of their open gates and gorgeous landscapes behave themselves.

Posted by
16589 posts

I just watched the latter part of Gov. Cuomo's press conference broadcast on CNN. I copied down the following statistics. I believe they represent totals for the state, though there was considerable discussion of the very serious situation in the New York metro area:

78,000 tested
20,875 infected
2,635 hospitalized (12.6% of the infected)
621 in ICUs/on ventilators (23.6% of the hospitalized; 3.0% of the infected)

The governor reported that the state has acquired and is distributing a substantial quantity of masks, gowns and face shields. He indicated the supply is enough to avoid an immediate crisis (my words). I missed the explanation of the origin of those goods. The governor previously stated that his people were scouring the world for PPEs. Today he said the current price of an N95 mask is about $7. They were selling for about $0.80 each before the virus hit.

Posted by
7606 posts

Well, it's Idaho. The Governor is holding a Town Hall tomorrow for an hour and has closed nothing although recommends no large groups and social distancing. Counties are taking the lead and closing restaurants/bars/businesses, Local school districts are taking the lead and closing schools. The State Parks system has closed Visitor Centers, group campsites, interpretive programs but trails are open and social distancing is encouraged. The nearest county park is open and a drive thru there on Saturday revealed it was busier than I've seen it since last summer. The reservoir is still mostly frozen over but people were fishing along the edge or out walking. It's been a warm winter so ice fishing has been done for weeks. Most seemed to be keeping apart (normal for Idaho, lol!). Our regular walking trail is normally deserted during the week but this last week there have been more cars than I've ever seen although compared to elsewhere this is minuscule. Yesterday there were EIGHT cars at the turnout, lol. No one was stopping to chat as they usually do - just a hello and moving on.

The last stats I've seen are that there are 47 cases statewide, no deaths attributable to Covid19 yet.

We (brother, SIL and me) are over 65 and are self-isolating. We are going to the grocery store once a week. Friday we did go to the Uhaul store to get supplies as we are also moving soon and I was afraid they would wind up closing as well. The 2 local universities went to distance learning a couple of weeks ago and now they are encouraging students to move back home so wanted to avoid contact with the student population as they pack up.

I made a Costco run 2+ weeks ago and there was no TP or Kleenex, rationing on paper towels. I saw on FB over the weekend that people who had been Thurs or Friday found plenty of papergoods on the shelf. One person was told by a Costco employee that they are getting a semi truck full of Kirkland brand TP every morning from the local paper products mill. (Mill is in Lewiston ID, Costco is across the river in Clarkston WA) They have a contract for the Kirkland store brand and apparently can deliver directly.

The local grocery store last Thurs had no paper products at all in the regular section and a small amount left in the Natural Foods section of the store.

I can also tell you that the Idaho timber industry is still working - loaded log trucks still running and the loggers at the local gas station were maintaining social distancing as they fueled their rigs the other day. Of course this time of year as things melt in the higher elevations some of that will be put on hold as it always does seasonally until the ground firms up again. However, no apparent disruption in the supply chain for paper goods.

We usually buy paper products in bulk from Costco anyway but 2 weeks ago when they were out I dropped by the nearby Albertsons and they still had full shelves so I got a couple of packs. We are good on paper towels, blue shop towels but will need more Kleenex because allergy season is not going on hold due to Covid19!

I follow what's going on in Yellowstone very closely. This time of year most of the park is closed for winter/spring plowing and there is only one road open for wheeled-vehicles - 52 miles from the North to the NE entrance. One of the tour guides I follow on FB said the park was a madhouse on Saturday - lines of people to get in the North entrance which is unheard of this time of year. No one was maintaining social distances when out of the car looking at wildlife. The Health Department in Park County MT, where the North entrance is located, has requested the Sec of the Interior immediately close Yellowstone. As with Moab UT this is a county with not a lot of health resources and could easily be overwhelmed.

Hope all stay well!

Posted by
5545 posts

Schools and universities were closed last week , restaurants and bars restricted , no service inside. Take out and delivery from restaurants allowed. It should be high season here and it looks like a ghost town. The shopping center near me only has a grocery and store gelato shop open out of around 70 stores.
Pharmacy nearby is open too.
US Senator Sinema took charge as our weak Gov waffled. Mayors did their part too.

Posted by
987 posts

I am really appreciating this thread, because there is SO MUCH news right now, it's hard to sift through all of it sometimes. I like being able to read what people here have to say about what's going on in their area.

Posted by
66 posts

We are 30 mins north of Charlotte, NC. As of today, there are over 400 cases, no deaths. Most of the cases are in the county where Charlotte (and the airport hub of AA) is located. Our county, tho, has 2 cases. I also read today that unemployment applications have skyrocketed this month, already 3x more than last year.

There isn’t a shelter-in-place order yet, but no gatherings over 50, takeout or delivery only unless the restaurant has outdoor seating, then sit outside with social distancing in mind. Gyms, movie theatres, hair salons, the usual places that offer personal services or where large numbers of people gather indoors are closed.

Costco, Sam’s Club, BJ’s, some department stores - they’re all open and running as usual. Toilet paper isn’t such a rare commodity here as it is in some places like Seattle where my brother lives. Many stores are limiting how many packs you buy tho, which seems like it works for many people.

A friend who works at a chain grocery store told me that she can’t keep Oreos on the shelf. They still get regular deliveries of Oreos but she has to keep stocking the shelves more than usual. So there’s panic buying of packs of Oreos here.

Public schools are out til May 15, which is essentially the rest of the school year. Grandkids are liking homeschooling. Not sure how my daughter feels about that. She’s always teleworked so her job situation hasn’t changed. Son-in-law is an airline pilot which brings its own worry.

Husband and I are on day 7 of our self-quarantine. We had traveled through Amsterdam, Jordan, London and JFK before finally getting home March 17. We’re both over 60, aren’t showing any symptoms so far but with the number of airports, planes, shuttle buses, hotel rooms and hundreds of people in close quarters we interacted with earlier this month as we made our way home, it’ll be a miracle if we come out of this completely clear. Our next booked tour is RS Basque Spain in Oct and we intend to make that trip.

The most frustrating thing for us is not being able to spend time with our grandkids. They live 3 miles from us and FaceTiming is fine but not the same. Our son in law (their dad) is a pilot with American Airlines and is still flying domestic flights regularly, most recently yesterday up to Seattle. Though he’s taking the usual precautions, he’s still exposed and bringing it home. It’s the nature of his work and all the other airline crews out there still flying.

For us, tho, it means we still have to keep our distance from the grandkids even after our self-quarantine is over. Very hard since I’m used to seeing them a few times a week.

Posted by
4857 posts

Our country health department is asking people who visited Eagle, Summit, Pitkin and Gunnison counties (areas with major ski resorts) in Colorado within the past week to self-isolate..

Posted by
113 posts

I am from Michigan and very happy with my governor's response. We are on stay at home order, schools closed for at least 3 weeks but I suspect that will change to the entire school year. Grocery stores are doing their best and instituting senior hours which are right when the store opens, after sanitizing and restocking. Gov and hospitals are quickly making provisions to accommodate more patients when needed. Surprised to see Michigan is 5th in the country for cases. Wonder if that is because we are doing more testing. Detroit area is really becoming saturated with new cases and hospitals are reaching capacity. Everything closed except what is deemed essential services.

Posted by
11676 posts

We are in a suburb of Seattle, the nation’s first “hotspot” for cv. Unfortunately the virus was unleashed in a retirement home, which accounted for many of the deaths here. Our Gov was early to close schools and shut things down, but many big local employers (Amazon, Microsoft) had already mandated that most employees work from home. On Monday the Gov announced stricter measures, amounting to a lockdown. All businesses but the essential services closed. Grocery stores and pharmacies stay open, and restaurants can do take out. (One enterprising very high-end local chain is doing take-out of bottled wine as well as meals; $15 a bottle, order online and they will put it in your truck when you drive up, no signature required. People can walk or ride bikes in their neighborhood, but otherwise should just stay home. The trails and beaches in our state parks, as well as sport courts, gyms, Playgrounds, etc. are closed

We heard at the start Costco was a zoo so we have never even tried. Our local Kroger grocery has been good at stocking everything but I have yet to see TP on the shelves. Fortunately we do not need any. On occasion the meat shelves have been empty when we went, but then are re-stocked by morning. Purchases of TP, hand sanitizer, and lots of other items are limited to one per customer.

Most grocery stores announced “senior hours” twice a week as of last week. Late last week both my husband’s daughters called and said at our age (70+) we are not supposed to shop more then once every 3 weeks, So on Friday we went and bought enough meat for the freezer, and some other things, but we already had a pretty full pantry so not worried. If we need something, the delivery system works well here—-both local stores, as well as Whole Foods (through Amazon Prime) have on-line ordering and free delivery (with a tip added for the driver). We will be generous with that.

Were it not for the horrific reason behind all this, and the economic hardship on many families, we would find some aspects of this quite pleasant. Much less traffic, and people are out walking their dogs and riding bikes with their kids. Everyone we see on our neighborhood walks is cheerful and good-natured, but maintains a respectful distance. Several of us on our street are helping to look after a very recently-widowed woman who no longer drives, and needs help with groceries, etc. She is a bit disappointed we cannot take her to get her hair done . . . .

Posted by
484 posts

MA extended no schools, public and private until May 4th. Our cases increase daily and likely haven't peaked here yet. There are now outbreaks in several senior living homes and one life care center.
Governor expressed leaning to extending 'stay at home' policy as schools will be closed, continue to protect seniors, and those
with health conditions. There is also discussion on closing takeout restaurants and beverages if things don't improve.
Colleges and Universities are deciding between Pass/No Pass or Pass/No Grade record. Concern is GPA. Some Boston colleges have graduated seniors so they can work in the much needed Health Industry, Labs, Hospitals, etc.

Neighboring New Hampshire just went to 'stay at home' and Maine likely to follow. It seems the Governors are doing it by cases
confirmed yet people travel over our state's borders daily for work and daily life. So MA has been in mode for 2 weeks yet we have
state crossings by other states. How does this make sense for people to come to areas of high exposure rates, it doesn't.

Our kids have been dropping off our groceries and we've been using six feet spacing with them for two weeks. The pharmacy delivers my hubby's scripts and anything else we order online. We wipe all our deliveries down and I use gloves. We take walks every day unless the Spring weather is too harsh. The public trail is overcrowded now so we stay in our neighborhood. My fitness studios have put their classes on YouTube and another using Skype or Facetime.

Most everyone is in the same situation. Our kids have been working from home for two weeks and still on payrolls. My family is well with no one feeling ill at all. We pray for those on the front lines of this pandemic and those less fortunate.

Posted by
274 posts

Vermont is under stay-at-home orders. Pre-K to 12 school buildings have been closed since March 16 and are now officially closed through the end of the school year, although teaching continues as best everyone can through computer tools and parental willpower. Google Hangouts is getting a workout. One of the nicest things I have seen is that one of the high school teachers set up a group lunch via video so the kids can "eat together" -- they have 80 kids signed up.

We have a rational governor and a strong public health presence, and they are coordinating a very measured approach that has been rolled out step-by-step as numbers have grown. We have been on the early curve of states enacting distancing measures and closures. People are largely complying with all efforts to stop the spread of the virus. No real mood of panic -- we are a very neighborly, yet independent group of folks in this state, and everyone is laying low but helping other folks as help is needed (from 6' away).

I am very impressed at the creative business models being developed around here, since they are allowed to stay open if they can maintain safe (distanced) working conditions. Small country stores are now doing delivery, restaurants are allowed to deliver alcoholic beverages (yay!), businesses are adjusting hours and spreading out shift workers, places are expanding online order capabilities, etc.

Our food stores are stocked; the bigger ones show more evidence of panic buying (no paper products, no cleaning products, no pasta), but I shop at our local, small market, and there's plenty of everything except hand sanitizer, which, since none of us goes out much and I handwash like crazy, isn't really a problem for me.

I am at home with husband, teenage kids (one of whom has a history of pneumonia), and my 80-year-old mom, so we are isolating as much as possible -- just going out for once a week grocery runs. My oldest (adult) child works in the emergency department and also as an EMT, so she is staying away until we all decide it is safe to visit. Thankfully the weather is warming up (except for that fresh 5" of snow early this week -- ugh!!) and there is plenty to do outside, so we focus on schoolwork in the mornings and get outside in the afternoons. Fresh air and a break from the news is unbelievably important these days. Our dirt road has a parade of runners, walkers, and bikers, so I think we are all using the same coping strategies.

Everyone out there, stay healthy and make sure you get some fresh air!

Posted by
1834 posts

Metro Nashville Mayor announced he will propose a "sharp increase" in property taxes to help "offset" lost revenues (sales tax/hotel/tourism tax) from Covid 19 and offset expenses from the large tornado just weeks ago (and that recovery process is still in process). Going into office (to which he was elected to help get Nashville on better financial footing, because despite our growth and popularity the city's financials have been suffering (too many tax incentives for relocating corporate headquarters, sports facilities, etc.) and infrastructure/traffic issues were mounting, voters knew he would tackle the tough issues and shut the faucet significantly on giveaways and make decisions such that Nashville would not continue to lose its neighborhood character. Now with the city pretty much shut down and no tourists, tax revenue has shrunk (and will likely remain that way at least into summer). So, we all knew a tax increase would be coming, but now it will be even more of an increase.

The CMA Feast, a huge tourist draw, has now been officially been cancelled. Those of you who are reading that may have tickets can use them for next year (or if you purchased thru official channels, you can get a refund), it was announced.

Our State Governor has issued a Safer at Home order and many doctors are pleading for the Governor to issue a Stay at Home order across the State. Some neighboring states are advising their residents to avoid our state due to the lack of the stronger mandate.......understandable. Nashville continues on the stronger mandate of Stay at Home. Current confirmed cases for Nashville is approx 541 and increased almost 100 overnight.

Please keep us on your radar for future travels, just wait until a vaccine is available.

Posted by
3114 posts

Every day seems like Saturday. All my neighbors stay home most of the day. The majority work in tech jobs so are working from home, except for 3- 4 who work for pharmacies and delivery services who leave before dawn and get home late. Dogs are getting walked so much they are beginning to act like they just want to stay inside. Grocery delivery is going well. Stores seem to have begun recovering from the massive buying panic and I have been getting 95% of what I order. Mail delivery still happens (for now). The Prime and UPS guys are constantly circling and dropping off packages. In other words, pretty much normal as can be. Yes, we are under a mandatory stay home order. We can go out for food and medical needs as well as exercise as long as we don't group together.

I had to leave the house today. I have been locked up except for deliveries and the walk to the mailbox and trash dumpster since March 12. So I drove around a bit. I got gas in the car (station is providing gloves and hand sanitizer!) because it was emptier than I was comfortable with. Cost less than $1 a gallon for mid grade. Also went through a drive through to get lunch. No worries as everyone was wearing gloves, some with masks, and the guy taking payment was at a separate window and handled the credit cards with a clorox wipe. Traffic was almost non existent and I saw more law on the road than anything else. Buses are still running, but didn't see anyone other than the drivers on then when I was out (someone mentioned they are still relatively crowded with health care workers at shift change times). But I am good now since I satisfied that craving. No reason to leave again soon except to get toilet paper as no one around here will deliver that.

Posted by
1377 posts

We got a text from our county (East of San Francisco) today that we are going on even tighter lockdown through May 3rd. We've already been on order to "Stay at Home." They are more closely defining "(non-)essential" businesses and "(non-)essential" activities and mandating that essential businesses each file their program for ensuring "social distancing" within their stores.

A homebound, older friend of mine has been on the waiting list since October for Meals on Wheels. They will begin her deliveries tomorrow!

On a larger scale, our state of California Governor is recruiting licensed health professionals, retirees and medical and nursing students to join the new California Health Corps to help respond to the outbreak.

Edit: the program was launched on Monday and the governor announced on Tuesday (today) that over 25,000 medical professionals and students had signed up. Extreme admiration.

Posted by
2297 posts

The CA governor appears impressively more competent than many of his colleagues in other states.

Posted by
593 posts

Neighbors I never knew stop what they are doing (outside, of course) and say hi. Senior grocery shopping hour from 7-8 a.m. M- T. Social distancing all around. Virtual happy hours with co-workers, friends and family via Zoom, MS Teams or FaceTime. Checking in by telephone call instead of forever long texts back and forth, back and forth..

Trying out new recipes - using up the food currently in the cupboard and fridge/ Freezer. Some interesting combinations coming out of that kitchen. Created gnocchi with sage butter on the weekend.

Donating money for food delivery to first responders and hospital staff.

Enjoying all the funny YouTube videos of how to wash your hands. Loved the Mash one someone on this board made up.

Keep the faith that we will all be traveling again. Strong Together (but 6’ apart).

Linda

Posted by
593 posts

Forgot to say, I live near the airport (Seattle-Tacoma) and there has been a decrease in the noise from aircraft. Also, our governor, to his credit, put a “Stay at Home” order fairly early on so most of us are doing just that. Three individuals in my family worked as wait/serving staff and, of course, are on unemployment now. My sister works in a grocery deli and is so nervous about catching the virus. Most restaurants are shuttered or serve very limited take out.

I work from home as a legal assistant and Most of my work can be done electronically. Only have two more months to retirement. Hmmm, not sure I can do a party until the Fall - maybe not even then.. bittersweet.

Take care all. We will be flying, training, sailing, and road tripping once again. It will just take time.

Linda, Seattle

Posted by
11417 posts

A homebound, older friend of mine has been on the waiting list since
October for Meals on Wheels. They will begin her deliveries tomorrow!

That's terrific, CW!

The resident SandHill Cranes are experts at social distancing.
The two "parent" cranes positioned themselves between "junior crane" and my dog and me. One then cackled at us and ruffled its feathers. The other parent got behind "junior" and ran junior up a couple of streets to the golf course. Too bad. I really wanted to get a good look at junior. I like birds.

Taking a cue from the birds - I hiked a trail today. I believe I was the only one on the entire trail.
Some rare scrub jays and a towhee squawked at me. The woodpeckers and Hawks didn't appreciate my presence either. Maybe I just have a bird social issue.
(I bet I could attract buzzards if I laid on the ground.)

Posted by
593 posts

A hummingbird came to visit today flitting outside my “home office” window while I was proofreading. Nice break

Posted by
4857 posts

How's the compliance in your area with stay-at-home and masking recommendations? We're seeing lots of businesses who are defying the shutdown, and lots of people who are gathering in large groups anyway - especially churches and extended families. I went to a grocery store yesterday where about 75% of shoppers were masked, and to Home Depot (yes I needed plumbing repair parts) where less than 25% were masked, and cashiers and workers had no masks or gloves. As time goes on, I think compliance will erode to the point that most people will decide to ignore the orders.

Missouri was one of the holdouts on statewide stay-at-home orders. Our governor finally issued such an order Sunday, but on closer look it turned out to be basically a social-distancing recommendation without requiring any businesses to close. Fear of rural voters.

Posted by
153 posts

There is an irony to your question- since I am diligently self- enforcing our state's guidelines I couldn't tell you what is happening " out there"! My school is now closed for the academic year, I have never been a take out meal person anyway so my only frame of reference is: Walked in my mask to my small town's ATM to make a deposit since the physical branch is closed, every store was closed and few people about. Do a curbside pre-paid pick up at a set time from the food coop about every 10 days (that member has a mask and gloves) and once weekly trip to the Farmer's Mkt. There everyone has masks and gloves and the taped lines for where to stand, produce is pre- bagged and etc. Around my home, I am so fortunate to be able to run or take really long walks with pretty scenery, my sister is trapped in NYC. People are getting better about stepping off the sidewalks into the street to create the suggested distance, I try to go early so I don't see anyone! I don't wear a mask on these outings, carry it in my pocket, in case.

Posted by
7606 posts

Sun-baked! I love your birding adventures. Hope you get to see Junior closer up but those Sandhill parents can be fierce. I once saw a parent run off a Black Bear who got too close to a colt in Yellowstone!

Stan, on my grocery run last week before the recommendation for masks I saw about 50% of the shoppers wearing them. I thought it was interesting as some of the shoppers seemed to be the local EMS/fire crews who had just gone off shift. (They all had on their emblazoned sweatshirts) The store has installed plastic shields for the checkers and all the checkers and baggers were masked. Idaho folks in small towns are pretty good at social distancing, lol.

Posted by
5017 posts

Where I live, Seattle, it appears that we have bent the curve, thanks to wise local leadership, a quick reaction and generally good compliance with shelter-in-place guidelines, which went into effect early. The data is tentative, but numbers appear to be trending favorably, allowing authorities to start moving resources elsewhere.

Two examples: Yesterday, the state of Washington sent 400 ventilators to the national stockpile, for use elsewhere in places that have a greater need. Today, they halted the deployment of one large field hospital in Seattle - because it now appears that we can get by without it even if there's a big surge - and sent it off to be redeployed in someplace that needs it more.

This appears to be a west coast phenomenon to some extent: in the past couple of days, Oregon sent some ventilators to New York, and California sent some to the national stockpile - because those states too, for the same reasons (wise local leadership that stepped up and took firm action early, when the national leadership was asleep at the wheel and in denial).

To be sure, it's way, way too early to declare victory, there's much more work to do, and we are not out of the woods yet by any stretch. But these are some hopeful signs. Let's hope the encouraging trends continue and are matched by more positive results elsewhere.

Posted by
1869 posts

Thanks David for sharing the the updates in the Seattle area. I too received the same memo today. Governor Inslee continues to be proactive. He has extended his stay-at-home proclamation and physical distancing strategies until May 4 for now. All schools are closed until the end of the academic year.

Stan & Pam we have been observing stay at home compliance for weeks (even before the proclamation). We have a contingent of companies like Amazon, Microsoft, Boeing, etc. who's staff have been working remotely. My husband went to the grocery store yesterday donned in his mask and nitrile gloves. He said about 90% of patrons/staff were masked. Our neighborhood store has installed the plexiglass shields at check out. Shopping carts are disenfected by an employee before entering the store. I spoke to management a couple weeks ago and was told that all carts are sprayed with disinfectant every 20 minutes as well. I was also told that our local Costco was allowing only 20 people to enter at a time.

Posted by
4857 posts

Just a note that in next door Kansas, the legislature has bypassed the Governor (of a different party) and declared that churches can stay open as a right to worship issue. Even after a cluster of cases associated with a church gathering. Politics triumphs over public good again.

Hey Stan,
I hear what you are saying. This is when citizens need to be self-responsible and decide for themselves whether or not to attend church. Also, if the church can sanitize its seating area and spread people out by more than 6 ft - then, it may be possible to continue services with songs, text readings, and spoken prayers. (But, not communion or church dinners).
Other churches are putting services online on their churches' websites or on YouTube. Some major denominations can televise services.
At this stage - it's inappropriate for a church to allow normal assemblies. Particularly, if many of the members are older than 60 years.

Posted by
2297 posts

Stan, you're nicer than me. I wouldn't use the adjective "inappropriate". I think "irresponsible" is more like it. I am horrified by the churches that are still meeting. Those pastors are displaying a reckless lack of regard for human lives and for the healthcare workers who will be overwhelmed if there are lots of cases. Our pastor stated that compliance with governmental authorities was in keeping with the churches' mandate to love our neighbor. and all our services, and choir practice and Sunday School classes, have been virtual since Mar 16. The first case in AL was confirmed Fri 13. To be fair, smaller churches with fewer resources cannot go online as easily as our church, which already streamed services on FB Live before coronavirus. Some small churches in AL have had drive-in services. Our church (4000 members) spent three weeks planning such a service, then took the plans to local first responders who said "please don't do this". So even the Easter sunrise service will be virtual. I don't know when I will be willing to attend choir practice when it resumes-several outbreaks in rural areas were the direct result of practices by church choirs and choral groups in late Feb/first week of March. I don't think there's any way to set up choir with enough distance between members.

Our pastor also pointed out that these stay at home orders are not separation of church and state issues because they do not target the church but apply to all gatherings, including football games(which we all know is our other religion in the South-the horrors of not having spring football!)

On the bright side, the last I heard, none of our members have tested positive.

Posted by
1615 posts

Owing to the pandemic and its financial impact on residents, the city of Westerville, Ohio ...a suburb near Columbus, OH has announced a utility bill holiday....April 15 will show “zero balance due”.
The city asks that if you can afford it, pay forward your amount to local Westerville nonprofits or charities.

Posted by
1869 posts

Thanks Cala for sharing what is happening in your church community. Kudos to your pastor who pointed out that "stay at home orders are not separation of church and state issues because they do not target the church but apply to all gatherings. I would also agree that it is "irresponsible" and "reckless" to allow normal assemblies.

Looking at the proactive modeling of California & Washington State social distancing strategies are working. It's plain and simple- it's a matter of life and death. We cannot become complacent. Compliance will make the difference. I also believe we have to advocate for ourselves. Look at the facts. I rely on daily scientific information from the CDC, my Department of Health and Dr. Anthony Fauci.

Posted by
11417 posts

Why Dorothy got out when she could, Stan

Dear Auntie Em,
Hate You
Hate Kansas
Took the dog.
Love, Dorothy.

Posted by
10675 posts

My humble opinion: A lot of people don't like the course our leadership has chosen. I understand. But it is the course we are on. Nothing will change that. The harder everyone works to accelerate the process the sooner the course can be adjusted. So we have to be all in; if drag this thing on too long the cure could become worse than the disease.

Posted by
335 posts

Hey James,

" So we have to be all in; if (we?) drag this thing on too long the cure could become worse than the disease."

Sorry to be dense, but I don't quite understand what you're saying here? What would "drag this thing on too long" actually be?

-- Mike Beebe

Posted by
335 posts

While I can't talk about where I work, I'll just say the nature of the business offers me a rather unique insight into Covid-19 cases and epidemic trends in Washington state. This is what I just learned on an all-employee call:

  • We should expect to WFH until June 1.
  • Our data shows that we appear to have peaked in this state.
  • WA state hospitals are actually in pretty good shape right now.
  • We should know in the next 60 days what the what the long-term financial impact to the state is.

-- Mike Beebe

Posted by
3317 posts

My husband and I had been voluntarily in a self-quarantine for two weeks since we flew home from Hawaii 20 days ago. We have still avoided the stores but have been outside this week for lots of bike rides and walks.

My husband went golfing yesterday (keeping the distance) and commented that it was busy with lots of people coming over the border from Washington State. It’s a sport made for this virus - players don’t share playing equipment, and they already wear a glove! I also saw in the news that our State Parks have many cars with Washington plates.

Posted by
10675 posts

Golf is good. Skeet shooting is good too.... social distancing is sort of a requirement.

Posted by
20 posts

Good Grief — Santa Cruz just banned surfing!
And visiting the wharf ( usually a good place to watch sea lions, sailors, and fishermen, and ear, drink, and shop). And walking/running along the ocean on West Cliff Drive. The amusement park at the Boardwalk was closed weeks ago, volleyball banished from the beaches, and the beach parking lots all closed.

Actually we’ve been doing very well with distancing - our curve is nearly flat (though testing has been so abysmally limited I doubt the data are worth a lot).

But “they” apparently are worried about invaders from San Jose and greater Silicon Valley swarming into Santa Cruz over the holiday weekend.

Here’s hoping to get our innocent pleasures restored by Tax Day!

Posted by
10675 posts

I know the governments are doing the best they can to make sense out of all of this, so this isn't a criticism, but it is funny that in my home town Liquor Stores and Gun Shops are essential businesses.

My Last Refuge just closed down - sad day!
The Lake Wales Ridge State Forest officially closed its remote trails sometime this week. I found out after I drove to a couple of trail heads.
I don't think the closures have anything to do with risk, so much as, letting the ranger staff stay home. These trails are so remote - that you would have to call a ranger to even have contact with one. I think if I was a ranger - I would welcome the opportunity to stay on duty. But then, the Rangers probably live on a base station or in the local area and can continue to enjoy nature anyway.

I was looking forward to using this down time to hit the trails.

Posted by
7606 posts

"Our data shows that we appear to have peaked in this state."

Probably should add - has peaked on the West Side of Washington. The Spokane County Health Officer is still saying Eastern WA has not peaked yet based on an interview clip on last night's local Spokane TV news.

Posted by
11417 posts

Carlos, just so that it's not quite as disturbing at it appears, although still very sad, Hart Island has served as a "Potter's Field" for 150 years (and for other purposes as well) and mass-grave burials of varying numbers of deceased is the standard procedure. Some background:

https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doc/about/hart-island.page

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hart_Island_(Bronx)

https://www.hartisland.net

Some pre-2020 mass-burial photos here:
https://sometimes-interesting.com/2014/09/20/buried-from-the-public-hart-island-new-york/

Just wanted you to know that the location/type of burial wasn't initiated with COVID19.

Posted by
4053 posts

Here on Coastal Georgia (Brunswick, St. Simons Island and Jekyll Island) we have a total of 30 cases, no deaths. That has not increased in several days.

We are shut down until May 1, and people are staying at home. Restaurants only offer takeout. We only go out to go to the pharmacy, grocery store or perhaps to Lowe's for home repair, etc.

Many people are out walking, biking, etc., but staying 6ft apart. Life is good, thanks to Netflix.

Posted by
1790 posts

Thank you for the context Kathy, I was not familiar with that island, I just saw this article on the BBC today, I guess it was misleading on some level, if such a thing is a common-ish occurrence for NY. The BBC have since moved the article further down from the main page.

Posted by
11417 posts

You're welcome, Carlos. I know, that article did make it appear alarmingly as if the majority of virus victims in NYC were being mass-interred at Hart but that's not the case. As the toll from the virus has increased, mortuaries reportedly have had to reduce the amount of time they've held onto remains of sadly unclaimed souls who've passed from all causes, which has greatly increased the weekly number of interments at Hart: Current average of 25 per day versus the usual 25 per week.

It does appear as if they may have to use the island for some temporary interments should the city morgues run out of space for even claimed persons but they haven't had to resort to that yet.

Coincidentally, I'd only become aware of this island a few months ago when I'd run across a historical piece about it.

Florida Update: tighter stay at home emphasis, wear face masks in public type areas, all trails closed including remote ones, local grocery store has made aisles one-way to prevent passing close to others. Take-out restaurants are still trying to hang in there. Dogs are getting lots of walks.

Posted by
10675 posts

I know, that article did make it appear alarmingly as if the majority
of virus victims in NYC were being mass-interred

Of course the article did. The news media is good at that. It's helping drive those already a bit touched in the head over the wall.

Posted by
10675 posts

Very poor judgment. I have always been one for holding elected officials to a much higher standard.

Posted by
11417 posts

James, i should have said that the HEADLINE was a bit misleading. The article itself explained things more clearly. I also won't generalize ALL news media outlets as Chicken Littles.

Posted by
11417 posts

I hear you, James. :O)

We are living in strange days, aren't we? I think most of us are just trying to manage as best we can. How we do that may be different depending on our individual situations. I do sincerely wish the best for all of you lovely people who so generously share your knowledge, wisdom and humor on these forums, and for your friends and families as well.

To quote Mr. Rogers:

"When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.'"

Posted by
1031 posts

Two weeks ago I chatted with the owner of our small grocery store. He told me how he ordered cases of toilet paper through the restaurant in our town. He was wrapping four rolls in deli wrap. They were being sold as fast as they hit the shelves. Which proves people are willing to buy the tougher grades.

Hi Doric8,
When the going gets tough ... The tough gets ... Sore!
(There will probably be a forth-coming supply of rash ointment in the near future.)

Posted by
51 posts

Dallas county extended its order till May 15 but our governor wants to open sometime in May depending on the county itself.

Posted by
1869 posts

In today's Seattle Times Business section, Jon Talon gives some perspective in his article "Road to recovery is a great unknown.” seattletimes.com/business

Posted by
4857 posts

Our governor is saying May 3, but our mayor is holding out for May 15. The counties are using the governors statement as political cover to justify earlier dates. Re-opening is supposed to be based on the always-promised-never-coming availbility of testing, but the cats out of the bag. Practically speaking, people are voting with their actions. I see fewer people masking up or wearing gloves each time I go out, even cashiers and workers.

Posted by
11417 posts

Wow, Stan. I'm seeing just the opposite, as far as masking and gloving, where I live (suburban Minneapolis.) We were briefly in a grocery store this morning where none of the employees (that we'd seen) had previously been masking. Today, ALL of them were, and most were gloved as well. An organic-type market near us which had previously hadn't wipes or spray for baskets and carts is reportedly now doing so.

I'm also seeing more store customers masking but not gloving.

Posted by
4857 posts

We have a pretty strong "don't tread on me" element here. And the infection rate and death rate hasn't been very high, so people are losing patience. I've visited two large grocery stores in the last 7 days. One has all cashiers wearing masks and gloves, wiping down the conveyor belt, cart handles, etc. But only about 10% of all their stockers, managers and backroom folks were wearing masks. The other store looked like it was optional for everyone and most cashiers did not mask up. I estimated 50% of customers were masked. At Home Depot maybe two workers in the whole store had masks, maybe 10% of customers. Yeah, this was a visible difference from my previous visits. Local politics also dividing folks, despite the "we're all in this together" messaging.

Posted by
10675 posts

In my city in Texas the masks and gloves in stores and offices have become pretty much the norm; especially over the last 10 days. But in Texas we didnt shut down as hard as many states. Thanks to work around's based on social distancing here isnt much you cant buy or do in Texas right now, its just a bit more inconvenient.

A lot of people say society will never be the same again; maybe thats true in a place like Hawaii, but what I am seeing is people chomping at the bit to get back to "normal". With a vaccine I think life will return 99% back to the old normal. Till then, maybe 75% (what ever that means).

Speaking of Hawaii, I know a group of about a dozen health care workers in NYC who have started planning to head to Hawaii to celebrate just as soon as Hawaii lifts their quarantine requirements. Its their reward to themselves for dealing with all of this. I might join them.

Posted by
51 posts

Governor of Texas opening up this Friday May 1 everything excepts gyms and hair salons which don’t open till mid May. Supposedly at only 25% capacity.

I agree with this but think it’s too early I would have liked to see it pushed back to June 1. Also wearing face protection isn’t mandatory like it was which is a mistake.

Posted by
105 posts

Just a thought. Perhaps I read it here, or perhaps in one of the newspapers I read, but when I hear how fed up we are all getting about the stay-at-home rules/recommendations, I have been reminded that Anne Frank and her family were confined to an attic for two years! I try to keep my perspective and be thankful that I have the retiree's luxury of an income, a car, a house, a computer, and friends to phone and chat with. I can walk around the block, google hangout with family, and can have a hollered conversation with the kids across the street. They always make me smile.

Plus, my husband ventured out for the first time since March 14 (I have done the grocery runs every 7-10 days), and he scored a 30 roll pack of Kirkland toilet paper at Costco! Life is good. Even though I don't know when I will get to hug my grandkids, I no longer have to worry about running out of t.p.
Keep planning those trips which we will eventually get to take, and reminisce about the ones taken. That's what I do, and it brings me joy. Stay well!

Posted by
67 posts

Thank you all for sharing these stories. This gives us Europeans a privileged insight into how Americans are fighting this virus.

Kathy, as the partner of a Minnesotan expat I am especially happy to get some extra insight into the situation in the Land of 10,000 Lakes as he does not like to talk about what he calls "bad news"!

Posted by
10675 posts

Governor of Texas opening up this Friday May 1 everything excepts gyms
and hair salons which don’t open till mid May. Supposedly at only 25%
capacity.

I agree with this but think it’s too early I would have liked to see
it pushed back to June 1. Also wearing face protection isn’t mandatory
like it was which is a mistake.

Retail, restaurants, etc can only open to 25% capacity and if compliance is the same as compliance to other rules has been to date, I expect that to be what happens. If its about social distancing, that might just make the difference. Sadly too late for a number of my small business friends. I suspect that May 15 +/- it will loosen up again.

Posted by
51 posts

I'm not trying to be negative, but if only 25% capacity is allowed I don't see what businesses are going to do with the missing 75% in their books?

I drove 10 minutes out from my hometown and more than half of people were not wearing masks, I couldn't believe it.

Posted by
10675 posts

I checked into a resort yesterday. All the staff was masked. At dinner all the staff was masked. All the tables were 10 feet or more apart and patios and private dining rooms were used to get the numbers up.

Generally, in my city, the rules are being followed. Most stores post the mask requirement and I saw one person stopped at the grocery store door for no mask.

In public, like walking on the street, where social distancing can be maintained there is no mask requirement.

To me it seems the rules are obeyed ... time will tell what the results are.

Posted by
4857 posts

Our mayor's plan to reopen gradually is based on what they're calling a 10/10/10 rule. A retail/restaurant business can have only 10 customers or 10% of max capacity whichever is larger. Anyone who is in there longer than 10 minutes, they're supposed to take your name and address for tracing purposes if someone comes up sick. It's supposed to go to 25/25/25 after so many days of declining infection rates.

But as I said elsewhere, people are already blowing this off, and the surrounding counties and suburbs have their own more lenient plans.

Florida - this is a rare time when we citizens are appreciating high heat and humidity. Both are supposedly the enemy of the virus. Summer is coming (honestly, it's rarely gone.).

So, we floridians are left with two options: the virus or skin cancer. (Let's not say both!)

We have no leeway whatsoever for global warming.

Posted by
10675 posts

Stan, if thats what the citizens of your community want, more power to them. I suspect fewer people there will contact the virus than here.

Posted by
2297 posts

Yes, Sun-Baked, we are looking forward to humidity and 90 degrees for the first time ever! The last paragraph of the article about FL in today's Wall Street Journal looks like some good news for us. Elsewhere, I have read that having good Vitamin D levels helps you avoid infection. We can wear hats and sunscreen to lessen the skin cancer risk. It's 85 and very sunny here now, but the humidity's not bad. My husband is having 4 or 5 of his friends from our (virtual only) church come to our yard (not house) this week to eat -there's plenty of room out there to social distance. The rules have already been established-no bro-hugs! FYI-these men are not irresponsible in their virus behavior- most of them are working from home, limiting trips to the grocery store, and wearing masks at the grocery store and workplace if going there. (Masks are required at work in downtown Birmingham and the police are ubiquitous to enforce it-there's one in the lobby of my husband's office building and people are not allowed to enter municipal buildings without one. The local county govt even issued N95 masks to govt workers who must interact with the public.) 2 of the men have had trips to Europe cancelled this spring and 1 cancelled a cruise to Alaska scheduled for August. Fortunately, 2 of them had been to Australia in January, before our travel world fell apart.

Posted by
10675 posts

cala, we are a bit more fortunate.... we can actually go to a restaurant for dinner..... But the yard party sounds like fun too. I know someone who did a birthday in the front yard a few days ago...

Posted by
3114 posts

I'm doing my part to keep the economy moving. Today I bought a car.

A very unique process. The dealership provided a selection of cars for me to test drive. They dropped each one at my place and sprayed the inside with a sanitizing chemical and then wiped down the door handles and everywhere on the outside that I might touch before leaving it. Leaving the keys on the roof, the gloved and masked salesman let me test each car alone as long as I wanted until I found exactly the one I wanted (took 10 attempts over 2 days). All of the preliminary paperwork was done online. I drop off the downpayment check in the morning at the service department of the dealership (still have to write checks for that, I wonder why), sign some physical paperwork, and the car is mine. Well, except for the 6 years of payments of course.

I got a very good deal and this apparently was the 1st car the dealership sold this month. My current car was a lease that expired 1st of the month and it will be picked up sometime in the next couple days.

I really liked the entire process. None of the pressure I always felt when doing this in person at the dealership. It might be the lack of sales that helped make them more agreeable, because I felt like I was in the driver's seat (no pun intended).

Now I will just have to wait until the government offices open, probably at least 60 to 90 days, before I can complete the titling and licensing processes. The state has a waiver on ticketing for expired registrations so shouldn't be any issues as long as I don't leave the state.

Posted by
11417 posts

Yikes, Mark! Sounds like it was quite the process but interesting that it wasn't one you found especially onerous.

LOL, I'd think that delivery of test vehicles to one's home would normally be considered a premium service reserved for uber-luxury vehicles to the uber-wealthy! Made you feel kinda special? 😉

Um, pretty sure you didn't buy a Lamborghini or similar but maybe I shouldn't assume!

Posted by
3114 posts

It was an affordable VW. I won't say they are giving them away, but the price is lowest I have seen on one in years. And the interest rate on the loan is zero.

And yes, having them bring the cars to me to let me go "No, i wanted the other blue color" did make me feel a bit higher class. :-)