Day 88 - The End

Posted on 06/08/2020 in misc

Like everybody else, the pandemic is "top of mind" 24 x 7 for me. I'm writing to help myself not internalize all of it. You can find other posts in the series at https://odonnellweb.com/pelican/tag/coronavirus.html

Day 88. The End.

The blog isn’t going anywhere, but this is the last post I’m tagging as my Cornavirus diary. The virus obviously hasn’t gone anywhere, and actually I have it on good authority that some hospitals in Florida are approaching overloaded status again. I suspect the same is happening in other states too.

I’m still taking it seriously, although it feels like I’m in an exclusive club in Virginia. We day-tripped to the beach yesterday, which was lovely, and we were able to keep our toes in the sand without being within 30 feet (ca. 9 m) of another person. On the way down we stopped at a WaWa for ice and food, and maybe 5 out 20 customers were wearing masks in the store. This despite multiple signs asking customers not to come in without a mask. Virginia rest stops both going and coming home exhibited about the same ratio, as did the rest rooms at the beach. If 80% of people wore a mask 80% of the time we’d control the virus and could all lead reasonably normal lives again. But in a county where 35% still support Trump, that goal is a pipe dream.

We definitely are getting out more - especially outdoors. All the evidence I’ve seen suggests if you are outdoors and maintaining a 6-foot buffer you aren’t going to end up with the virus. Even passing on the street or other brief, chance encounters are highly unlikely to result in transmission. You catch the virus indoors in recirculated air among a crowd of people, so restaurants, church, concerts, bars, etc.

Along those lines this survey of 500+ Epidemiologists is interesting. 64% will not attend a concert, sporting event, or play in the next 12 months. 20% would travel by plane this summer, and 44% in the next 3-12 months. 56% feel ok doing overnight trips this summer, which makes me feel good about the camping trailer we bought on Friday. Only 16% would eat at a dine-in restaurant this summer, which tracks with how I feel. I don’t plan to eat dine-in until I’m vaccinated.

Covis-19 as a marker in time seems over to me. Life today with no plane travel, avoiding crowds, no indoor dining, no gyms, and wear a mask anytime I have to venture into a public indoor space is just the new normal. It’s how smart people live now, and will continue to live for the foreseeable future. Maintaining a pandemic diary suggests that the pandemic will end in some relatively short time period that makes the pandemic part special. The pandemic part will be 12-18 months at a minimum in that case. So any day I end it prior to vaccine induced herd immunity is an arbitrary date, so why not June 8th?