scenes from an ongoing pandemic, week 8

You’re looking at the parking lot of my local Publix grocery store around 7:30 in the morning. I’m there to shop during the 7am to 8am window that Publix has set aside for us seniors 65 and older. Since I’m 66, I qualify. This isn’t the first time I’ve gone to that store at that time to shop. The last time I was there, about a month ago, the place was packed. But this morning it was almost empty. No lines, very few cars, very few shoppers inside. That black Prius in handicap parking right in front is mine, by the way. Another first; usually I have to park where I can towards the back and hobble through the front door.

I have no idea what’s happened, but I do know that people are starting to go back out and mix close together. The social distancing signs are still all over the place, but it looks like folks are ignoring them. I suppose we have our moronic governor to thank for that, as well as the orange orangutan in the White House.

Stores are still short on toilet paper, and what little shows up is limited to one item per customer. So it’s not as if the supplies have caught up with demand. There are shortages now of poultry products in all the stores in my area. I shop at Costco, and I when I went this past week there was no chicken or turkey products to be bought. The freezer cases were instead filled with fish and pork, which I found a bit bazar. The butcher cases were filled with beef, so that was still in supply. Eggs were still in good supply, but signs were limiting them to two cases of eggs per customer. Another missing item was frozen vegetables. I normally buy a big bag of Kirkland frozen vegetables, but there were none to be found. Instead I substituted Kirkland frozen stir-fry. Strawberries were not to be found either. All the paper towels that filled a center isle in the Costco last week were gone again. No toilet paper either.

The coronavirus numbers keep going up. Here’s todays snapshot worldwide and US.

The US now has over 1.2 million confirmed cases, five times more than second position Spain. We’ve had over 75,000 deaths (and I’m sure, far more than that, but they won’t count as “official”), over twice the United Kingdom at number two. Such much winning! I’m sick and tired of so much winning.

My wife and I are still sticking pretty much at home, going out only when necessary. When we do go out it’s masks and gloves and keeping our six foot distance as much as possible. We’re not even close to the end of coronavirus, and we will pay an even higher price when the infections come roaring back later this year. My wife and I will certainly have a lot of practice surviving the coronavirus pandemic. So much practice.