As states begin re-opening, governments, businesses, and individuals test what works and what does not. Everyone and every group have a different opinion and love to share why their point of view is correct.
In Wisconsin, the State Supreme Court struck down the governor’s declaration to stay at home. In Oregon, the State Supreme Court overruled a lower court’s decision that limiting religious services violated freedom of religion and that the rest of the governor’s Stay At Home orders were null and void.
For many it’s which is more important:
- the economic health of the community or
- the physical health of the community.
Re-opening is a balancing act between jumpstarting the economy while continuing to contain further Covid-19 outbreaks.
Virginia began it’s phased re-opening on Friday–a sunny, gorgeous 80 something day. My husband and I celebrated by meeting another couple for lunch at 11 when the brewpub opened. Although we drove to the restaurant in separate cars we did share a spacious table under a cheerful umbrella.
Blue Mountain Brewery had done a wonderful job of spreading out the tables across its spacious patio and front yard with a panoramic view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The wait staff was wearing masks; nobody was allowed inside except to use the bathrooms. The tape was stretched from the entryway directly to the bathrooms for those who did not know where the bathrooms were or hoping to order from the taped off bar.
The menus were paper but the cutlery and plating were the ones that the restaurant always used. Water was self serve from a table set up nearby.
We split an artichoke and spinach dip before my husband had a turkey wrap and I had a small Ceasar salad with chicken. We each had a side of some delicious baked beans. He drank a Full Nelson, their flagship pale ale and I had a Bold Rock hard cider. (I am the only one in my family who does not like beer.)
On Saturday, we went to one of our favorite wineries, Cardinal Point. Virginia wineries can only
- serve outside (no wine tasting at a counter)
- at 50% of their normal capacity.
Many have opened, some require reservations to ensure that these guidelines can be maintained. Some of the appointments are limited to two hours so that the winery staff can sanitize the seating area before the next group arrives.
Many of the wineries limit the initial appointments to wine club members only. Although Cardinal Point does not charge for a reservation, many are charging between $10 and $25. One whose name I do not remember and will not patronize anyway is charging $145 for a reservation. Any wine purchased will be deducted from the reservation price.
Some sell food and all of them encourage guests to bring picnics from home, as well as the utensils. Some say you have to take out whatever you bring in, except for the wine they would like to sell you.
At Cardinal Point, we split a bottle of Green Wine (very similar to Portuguese Vinho Verde) and a bag of savory snacks.
The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles opened yesterday. I needed to renew something and made an appointment online last week for 8:55 this morning. The DMV limits the number of customers inside. If you arrive more than 10 minutes early you need to wait outside until they call your number.
I got there at 8:50 as one of the DMV workers came out to look for me. She lead me inside and looked around for an open window. (Every other window has a plexiglass shield in front it and the in-between stations are empty.). A single chair is placed in front of each manned window. (The rows of chairs where you normally wait for 20-60 minutes after standing in line for 20 minutes or longer so you can get a number to go wait in one of the chairs, had been removed.)
I was required to wear a mask and had my temperature taken before I went inside. It was the most pleasant experience I have ever had at the DMV–in an out in under 10 minutes.