Off shooting with MikeB and a Walther PPX that MikeT has kindly lent me. My new favourite gun. It’s amazingly accurate and surprisingly even more accurate without the laser site. Really impressed so much so that I’ve had to move the target out to 40 to make it more interesting. Tried a couple of MikeB’s guns. Great morning.
Hal came round after lunch and we went a stroll around the neighborhood.
Then off to see Shaun at Hertz to get my car upgraded to a 7 seater SUV – Ford Explorer XLT, very nice. Sadly though I won’t need it if our kids come out, it always feels better to have plenty of good old American steal around you. Especially when negotiating roundabouts. Shaun does an amazing job at Hertz and always looks after us well.
B&M and M&J come round for dinner. Good food (homemade chicken pot pie), good wine and great company.
Things are getting truly crazy here with the Covid-19 Pandemic, Pandemonium And Panic (PPP). Trumps travel ban from Europe may well have screwed Kurts family trip here as they are flying via Amsterdam.
An interesting commentary:
Devastating news, Pickleball has been cancelled for March due to the PPP (Pandemic, Pandemonium And Panic). How will I cope. Let’s hope the gun club stays open and we’re still allowed to go for a walk. The sports club has canecelled all TGIF’s and Apre-ski events. Wendy’s told the Christian centre she will not be volunteering for the rest of the month – don’t blame her, she’s a volunteer, why be front line dealing the public.
Whilst PPP buying has hit the supermarkets and the shelves are bare of toilet rolls, hand sanitisers and a lot of staples like rice and pasta, at least the liquor store has plenty of supplies (Zen of Zin on special at $8.99 is a real plus, I think I’ll panic buy that) so at least we can always get our calorific intake from alcohol. So far there’s been no mention of possible benefits of drinking plenty of alcohol to combat the virus. You’d think if it works on the hands it would work on the body, but perhaps we have to gargle with it and rinse our sinuses.
Well it seems the only exercise left is to go for a walk, so I trudge through the snow up (up being the operative word – this is so much harder than Pickleball) to the Market and Liquor store to meet Wendy. It starts snowing so halfway there so it looks like I’ll chicken out of walking back down.
Hal, Carol and Angela come round for dinner in the evening.
Well amidst all the PPP there has to be some good. It seems that most of all we’re left with the benefit of so many good friends; “use our home if you’re stranded here”; “come and stay with us in LA” and so on. I can think of worse places to be stranded.
But perhaps other good will come out of this PPP madness:
1 As employers start trusting their staff and letting them work from home, perhaps they’ll start to see the benefits to both parties and the lower impact on our roads and the environment. No I haven’t suddenly become a tree hugger, but rather than building more roads, making better use of technology makes so much more sense. Why perhaps our government may start to think longer-term and even offer tax breaks to companies that promote remote working
2 Increased use of video conferencing for all sorts of uses, especially for visits to the doctor.
3 Who knows the hoarders may even learn the stupidity of panic buying.
4 Perhaps the press may even learn not to whip up such panic and pandemonium with their sensationalism. It really is hurting people and perhaps we may find a way of holding them more accountable for the panic they create.
5 Perhaps best of all we see a decline in globalism as countries and companies shy away from such extended supply chains and JIT manufacturing, become more reliant on local suppliers and more independent.
6 Who knows education might start to realise the potential for video conferencing and computer-assisted learning.
7 We may even become better neighbours and less selfish.
8 Perhaps even the EU may start to see the folly of their attempt to create the United States of Europe across so many diverse countries, cultures and languages. Perhaps even resort to becoming just good trading partners.
Whilst not attempting to belittle the problems with covid-19 I find it somewhat bizarre the degree of Pandemonium and Panic when compared with deaths deaths from the flu. The press are having a field day and fueling the fears and panic. All this talk of heard immunity seems to make sense but just looking at the heard’s response and panic buying is only making matters worse. Some interesting facts:
COVID-19: No vaccine is available at this time, though it is in progress.
Flu: A vaccine is available and effective to prevent some of the most dangerous types or to reduce the severity of the flu.
COVID-19: Approximately 127,863 cases worldwide; 1,323 cases in the U.S. as of Mar. 12, 2020.*
Flu: Estimated 1 billion cases worldwide; 9.3 million to 45 million cases in the U.S. per year.
COVID-19: Approximately 4,718 deaths reported worldwide; 38 deaths in the U.S., as of Mar. 12, 2020.*
Flu: 291,000 to 646,000 deaths worldwide; 12,000 to 61,000 deaths in the U.S. per year.
The COVID-19 situation is changing rapidly. Since this disease is caused by a new virus, people do not have immunity to it, and a vaccine may be many months away. Doctors and scientists are working on estimating the mortality rate of COVID-19, but at present, it is thought to be higher than that of most strains of the flu.
*This information comes from the Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Cases map developed by the Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering.
Ughh a no alcohol day.
A lazy morning for us both and then Wendy tootles off to see a sawbones about her back / pile / bum. As she drives into the surgery car park a nurse come out in gown and mask to carry out some basic triage. Asks Wendy what the problem is and then consults with the doctor. Wendy’s given a mask, told to wash her hands and invited into the non-covid-19 side of the waiting room. Seen within minutes and after a somewhat embarrassing examination is told how to deal with it. Doctor can’t understand why this wasn’t dealt with in the UK and why she was told to come back in 3 months if no better. Over here most problems are dealt with promptly with a battery of expensive test and medication. Suffering kept to a minimum. Total cost of her visit $116.
Helen and George pop round with an anorak for Jasper and we have a good old chin wag, George and I put the world to rights
Then we toddle off up to the PCMR base for some coffee from Campos. Has to be the Worlds best coffee, just a pity their customer service skills and attitude are so bad, I’d rather lick piss off a nettle than shop there.
Finally, it’s a trip to Chubascos for my long-awaited – four weeks and I’m only just having one – smothered Californian Burrito along with a selection of the hottest salasa they do. Proper haute cuisine. Awesome. Chimichanga next time.
Evening in watching TV and admiring the drinks on my drink shelf, but being strong and resisting. Let’s hope I get some feeling back in my tongue after all that salsa.
Bad news, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), drinking alcohol to stay safe and kill the deadly virus’ is not true. Still alcohol does make you feel better so perhaps best not to give it up. As the saying goes “Wine improves with age and I improve with wine”.
Further bad news, Trump is now banning all passengers from the UK from Monday. Oh well that EU ban but UK OK didn’t last long. At least the good news is the kids should get their money back either from Air France – crap customer service but what can you expect, the clues in the title – or if not their travel insurance company.
Finally, the PPP has gone berzerk, they are now closing the ski resorts for a week. Fortunately, it doesn’t affect us but shows how crazy things have got.
Lazy start to the day.
My Sunday walk.
I set off to walk upto Fresh Market and meet Wendy there. The only problem is I take the car keys with me so I have to walk back down. The good news is I get my 4 miles in, most of it on snow so it’s a real workout.
Supermarkets not too busy but of course there are the scrots panic buying. My suggestion is simple’s, each cashier to be given a loud bell she can ring, to draw everyone’s attention to the anti-social panic buying scrot and the manager then comes and refuses to sell them anything and escort them off the premises. Nothing like a good overdose of peer pressure and common sense.
Lazy afternoon in. Who knows if it carries on at this rate I think I’ll be brushing up on my French.
Start Yoga, a DVD version. Could this PPP be an ideal opportunity to finally get into it? Will I keep it up this time?
B&M come round for tea – edamame, sushi and warm sake. Oh and ice cream for Bob.
By Dr. Sharkawy On COVID-19:
“I’m a doctor and an Infectious Diseases Specialist. I’ve been at this for more than 20 years seeing sick patients on a daily basis. I have worked in inner city hospitals and in the poorest slums of Africa. HIV-AIDS, Hepatitis,TB, SARS, Measles, Shingles, Whooping cough, Diphtheria…there is little I haven’t been exposed to in my profession. And with notable exception of SARS, very little has left me feeling vulnerable, overwhelmed or downright scared.
I am not scared of Covid-19. I am concerned about the implications of a novel infectious agent that has spread the world over and continues to find new footholds in different soil. I am rightly concerned for the welfare of those who are elderly, in frail health or disenfranchised who stand to suffer mostly, and disproportionately, at the hands of this new scourge. But I am not scared of Covid-19.
What I am scared about is the loss of reason and wave of fear that has induced the masses of society into a spellbinding spiral of panic, stockpiling obscene quantities of anything that could fill a bomb shelter adequately in a post-apocalyptic world. I am scared of the N95 masks that are stolen from hospitals and urgent care clinics where they are actually needed for front line healthcare providers and instead are being donned in airports, malls, and coffee lounges, perpetuating even more fear and suspicion of others. I am scared that our hospitals will be overwhelmed with anyone who thinks they ” probably don’t have it but may as well get checked out no matter what because you just never know…” and those with heart failure, emphysema, pneumonia and strokes will pay the price for overfilled ER waiting rooms with only so many doctors and nurses to assess.
I am scared that travel restrictions will become so far-reaching that weddings will be canceled, graduations missed and family reunions will not materialize. And well, even that big party called the Olympic Games…that could be kyboshed too. Can you even
I’m scared those same epidemic fears will limit trade, harm partnerships in multiple sectors, business and otherwise and ultimately culminate in a global recession.
But mostly, I’m scared about what message we are telling our kids when faced with a threat. Instead of reason, rationality, open-mindedness and altruism, we are telling them to panic, be fearful, suspicious, reactionary and self-interested.
Covid-19 is nowhere near over. It will be coming to a city, a hospital, a friend, even a family member near you at some point. Expect it. Stop waiting to be surprised further. The fact is the virus itself will not likely do much harm when it arrives. But our own behaviors and “fight for yourself above all else” attitude could prove disastrous.
I implore you all. Temper fear with reason, panic with patience and uncertainty with education. We have an opportunity to learn a great deal about health hygiene and limiting the spread of innumerable transmissible diseases in our society. Let’s meet this challenge together in the best spirit of compassion for others, patience, and above all, an unfailing effort to seek truth, facts and knowledge as opposed to conjecture, speculation and catastrophizing.
Facts not fear. Clean hands. Open hearts.
Our children will thank us for it.
Dr. Alexander Roth
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