Wow, what a week. It has gone from “gee this virus is moving fast, maybe we should watch stuff” to “CANCEL EVERYTHING NOW!” The transition, although necessary, is a bit jarring. I am really really really happy I didn’t go to Anaheim. If I had, I’d be being asked to self-isolate now.
All the shifting cancelations and schedules are hard to track. I know they’re necessary, but they’re a lot to take in. It’s hard to go from predictable hours to realizing everything you know is wrong.
I do have a question though. Some of the malls around here are shortening their hours. They say this is to do with Covid-19, but I can’t figure out how it helps. Sure, it means the malls aren’t open at some times when people go there, but won’t that squish more people into the shorter hours rather than allowing them to spread out, thus making the malls more crowded? And this is March Break, so it’s not like it would keep all the teens who like to hang out there from doing it, since they can do it during the day.
I’m already seeing some weird effects on customer service. I went to the grocery store, not for toilet paper, and they made me give them a list and they went and got the items. Meanwhile, everyone else was walking around the store. I can only assume that they didn’t want the employee to be having to stand close to me, helping me shop. We could have put the cart between us and it would have worked, I’m sure. With them running off to get things, I couldn’t ask about what’s on sale, make any decisions. I got what I got. They were patient enough, but I found that method kind of stressful. Then, after doing that, they suggested I use the direct line to the cab company…you know, the public telephone receiver that everyone touches and breathes on. Thanks for looking out for *my* safety.
I’ve noticed a couple of cab drivers be very hands-off, not getting out of the driver’s seat, not wanting to get out at the end. All of this is fine. But these ones went the extra mile, not even offering me verbal instructions about where the door to the building was. I wouldn’t expect them to do anything that makes them uncomfortable, but there’s no danger in telling me where the door is in relation to the car so I don’t have to stand in the middle of a giant parking lot like a dork.
I hope this social distancing thing gets people to get better at their directions. Since they can’t just let us grab an arm, or grab us if they’re less cool, they have to be able to direct us using their words. Some people mean well, but they don’t think like a blind person. I was facing a counter and was told to “go straight.” I stood facing them, counted to 5 in my head, and then said “um…no.” Then the person said I had to go right and then go straight. Ok. That makes more sense. My old driving a videogame character analogy still applies. Think about how you would move a joystick if you were remotely controling something. Try and give me those directions if there aren’t straightforward directions to give like intersections of streets etc. But until people figure that out, I imagine customer service is going to be a bit tricky. Hey, maybe Ramble Tags will take off and “forward-thinking stores” will be handing them out like candy. I just hope they don’t go the Wuhan route and do self checkout only.
People have been nice so far, but I have noticed since Thursday, I’m definitely more anxious when I go out shopping, not sure how my request for help will be received and not sure what kind of fellow customers I’ll find. I’m hoping as the panic goes down, we can start being kinder and more patient towards each other. I can hear Red Green in my head. Remember I’m pullin’ for ya. We’re all in this together.”