When Covid first started to hit the news I started to wear rubber gloves to the grocery stores. I would notice the people who gave me strange looks for the gloves. I remember the news stories about how they did not real good for anyone. Most of that centered around how people didn’t know how to properly remove the gloves. I wore them because it was a reminder to not touch my face, to not take that sample and eat it, and to not rub my nose. I also sprayed things like the shopping carts with rubbing alcohol more often. As time went on I saw more people with gloves on at the stores.
Then I saw people wearing masks. I too put on a mask and went to the store. Before all the mandates people looked at me funny. Some shook their heads and went on past. I did hear a few comments every now and then. A lot of times the comments were along the lines of conspiracy theories, and how we just needed herd immunity and everyone should be exposed. Before long though to get into a store one had to wear a mask. Some people took them off once inside. Others wore them below their noses which does no good for them or anyone else. Stores all had bottles of sanitizing spray out for spraying off carts. I still carried my bottle of rubbing alcohol.
When the vaccine started to get administered there seemed to be light at the end of the tunnel. People could get vaccinated and then no more need to wear a mask. No need to worry anymore because once I got my shots I would be immune. Only Covid is like any virus; it mutates and changes as time goes on. It only goes away when it no longer has anyone to infect and can’t mutate anymore. On the news I still heard of people with the vaccine getting Covid. Granted not as bad as those who don’t have their vaccines yet. Soon, the mask mandate drifted and it has become more of a suggestion for those with the vaccine and any underlying health issues. Signs changed to reflect that people vaccinated didn’t have to wear a mask to enter the store. Now the message seems to be that if you are wearing a mask you don’t have the vaccine. Because only people without the vaccine are required to wear masks everywhere they go.
Now at some stores they no longer spray off the carts with disinfectant. The bottles are no longer sitting out for people to spray their own carts. At those stores, I have to use my rubbing alcohol and any hand sanitizing wipes I can find. While other stores still have the disinfectant bottles sitting out to be used on the carts. However I haven’t seen the attendants spraying down the carts, so I use it to spray my cart. When it comes to masks there are some stores where it seems more people still wear masks, and at others the majority don’t.
I still wear a mask. I have gotten the vaccine. Yesterday I went to the store where it seems very few people wear masks anymore. I noticed that the reactions I got were similar to what happened when Covid first started. A woman in one area looked at me, shook her head, and did “tsk tsk”. Others moved away when they saw the mask. A lot just shook their heads and gave strange looks. I have even heard from relatives that strangers have told them they don’t have to wear a mask anymore.
Covid is not gone. There is still around 30% of people in my state without even one shot of the vaccine. People who have had Covid can still get it and spread it to others. Even with the vaccine I can still get Covid. I can still carry the virus and spread it to other people without even knowing I was infected. In short, I could still kill someone simply by not wearing a mask or taking precautions. There are the variants that are coming and the increased numbers of infections in the area. Then there are the elderly relatives of mine with those underlying health conditions, who even with the vaccine it would be bad if they got Covid.
At the end of the day I am still going to wear a mask. I am still going to use rubbing alcohol on my hands. I am still going to take precautions and shop only during low traffic times at stores. I am going to request at medical offices that the people I come into contact with also have their vaccines. This virus is going to stick around until it has no more people to infect. The only way to start to make that a reality is if everyone gets vaccinated.