COVID-19 Essential Services Road Trip
By Tim Cornett
It’s Saturday afternoon, and the Missus and I have just returned from our “Essential Services” tour of the city. Our stops included the drug store, (where you can get Ex-Lax but not toilet paper), the grocery store (where you can get paper towels but not toilet paper), the liquor store (definitely an essential service these days where you can get booze but not toilet paper, and if you get enough booze, you don’t really care) and a fast food hamburger joint (where you can get in the drive thru but you can’t order toilet paper).
Windsor - Mar. 22, 2020: It’s Saturday afternoon, and the Missus and I have just returned from our “Essential Services” tour of the city. Our stops included the drug store, (where you can get Ex-Lax but not toilet paper), the grocery store (where you can get paper towels but not toilet paper), the liquor store (definitely an essential service these days where you can get booze but not toilet paper, and if you get enough booze, you don’t really care) and a fast food hamburger joint (where you can get in the drive thru but you can’t order toilet paper).
This was the first outside trip for the Missus in twelve days. No, she’s not sick with the virus, just being cautious and trying to follow the rules. Here are a few takeaways from our journey. Which reminds me, this coming Tuesday is #TakeoutTuesday, the premise being that you order food to go from one of our local establishments currently struggling to keep the lights on during this crisis. You can probably Google it for details.
At all of our stops we were made aware of new markings on the floor near the checkouts. These spots were designated social distance areas, where we could wait until it was our turn to pay. And everywhere we went, people were playing by the rules. It seems that we are indeed taking this seriously. And do you know what? For the most part people were actually being nice to one another. Let’s hope that stays with us after life returns to normal.
On a couple of occasions, we saw people who have clearly just recently returned from somewhere warm. The tans and flip flops were a giveaway. And while I didn’t want to be “that guy” and admonish them publicly, I did look them up and down and gave them some pretty serious stink eye. I wanted to yell “Hand sanitizer and masks to aisle four, STAT!” but that’s not me. Oh yeah….they knew. And speaking of hand sanitizer, at the liquor store we were greeted by a security guard bearing a gift. He had a large container of the good stuff and offered it to everyone entering the store.
Our last stop was at our favourite watering hole, The Dominion House in Sandwich. We knew they weren’t open (the kitchen is, and you can order takeout through Skip The Dishes) but we just sat in the parking lot for a few minutes, telling each other that this too shall pass, and we’ll be back inside doing the “Build-A-Burger” thing soon. In the meantime, see #TakeoutTuesday above. (Not to be confused with #MakeoutTuesday, which is a whole other column.)
We’re back home now, with a full fridge and freezer (no, we didn’t hoard) and are getting ready to settle into another evening of TV. I don’t know about you, but the Missus and I are Primed. And Craving some Netflix.
Hats off to all of the staffs we encountered on our stops today. Thank you for doing what you do. Thank you for coming to work so we can get the stuff we need. I’ve always said that people who work in retail and the service industry don’t get enough respect from the general public. I hope that changes after we get through this. God bless each and every one of you.
Be safe, everyone. Don’t blame the staff for the toilet paper thing. Wash your hands. Be nice to each other. Wash your hands. Don’t hoard. Wash your hands. Let a senior citizen cut in front of you in line.
And wash your hands.
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