Life During A Pandemic: Social distance applies in stores
April 3, 2020
I was struck this past week by a surprising contrast. One day I walked several miles around town to get some outside exercise, and was impressed by how diligent other walkers were about maintaining social distance. In spite of the sparse density of people outside, most were impressively conscientious, even to the point of crossing the street when another walker approached so as to keep considerable distance.
The following day, I visited a local grocery store. My partner and I are now planning our weekly meals to the point of needing only one or two grocery visits a week. I was appalled at the lack of common sense I observed there. So, since we all need to eat, and all wish to not only remain healthy ourselves, but to slow the spread of this horrendous virus, I offer some suggestions for thoughtful grocery shopping:
• Plan ahead to minimize the number of shopping trips you need.
• Buy only what you need for the next week or so. Leave product for your neighbors who also need it.
• Don't stand in the middle of the aisle. Especially, don't block the middle of the aisle while conversing with someone else. Grocery aisles are not wide enough for the recommended distancing as it is. Make it easier for other shoppers to get around you. Likewise, don't block aisle ends. Others need to get into the aisle.
• If you are getting only a few items from an aisle, walk it without your cart so that it's easier to get around you.
• Touch as few items as possible.
• Don't horde or steal wipes from the store's entrance. One local store even needed to distribute wipes from their service counter, as people were stealing the entire container. Again, remember that the entire city has needs, not just you.
• Leave the phone at home, in the car or in your pocket. I've noticed that people on their phone are much more likely to violate safe shopping guidelines due to the distraction.
Crises as we're currently facing should bring a community together. Please do your part by being a good citizen. If we are all cognizant of others around us when we do need to be out and about, we will all benefit.
From Mark Cline