This post continues from yesterday’s post about my recent experiences with shopping in my very small-town grocery versus going 20 miles to a larger metropolitan area. Covid-19 wise the difference is night vs day.
I, like most in the world, am now hunkered down at the homestead. I only make a weekly trek to replenish the pantry shelves. I decided early on in the pandemic that I would stay close to home if at all possible. That meant getting all my groceries from a small grocery in town. I have uncomfortably done that for a half dozen times, but because of my experiences reported in yesterday’s post that is going to change now.
I live in a very very Red county in a very RED State. #CO3 (the current Oval Office Occupant) won my county in 2016 with almost 70% of the vote. So, of course there are a lot of MAGA folks surrounding me. I do feel kinda like living behind enemy lines but that is another story.
It seems for the most part the population of MAGA folks that surround me refuse to wear masks. I guess they see it as a betrayal of their leader currently occupying the Oval Office. Being a small independent grocery their shelves varied significantly from week to week. That was OK, I was willing to accept that. But what I am not willing to accept is that several of the employees and a good majority of the patrons were frequently without masks. The ultimate panic occurred when I saw an employee sneeze into his hands and then proceeded to stock the shelves. If you want to see more details see yesterday’s post about having an Aspie breakdown.
With that traumatic experience I decided this week to make the 20-mile trip to a Kroger store in a more populated and much less MAGA oriented town. I first stopped at a Menard home improvement center there to pick up some items I had ordered on line. Everyone in the store had masks on. There was a prominent sign at the entrance that ALL customers must wear masks. That was certainly good to see.
I then went to Kroger and while they did not absolutely require the patrons to wear masks at least 90% did so. 100% of the workers I encountered also wore masks. For the most part the store shelves were full, including produce. When I went to check out I found a plastic shield between me and the checkout clerk and baggers. Since I used a credit card the checkout process was touchless. Needless to say I felt infinitely safer at Kroger. I will be bypassing my hometown grocery from now on and making that 20 mile weekly trek. It is just safer for me to do so and greatly reduces my anxiety.