A Momentous Week

Just some odds and ends to what’s going on…

Phase 3 Continues in Decatur

As the pandemic continues so do restrictions for social gatherings. Restaurants cannot have indoor dining, movie theaters are closed, and large groups are discouraged.

Thankfully, case numbers and deaths have continued to drop in Macon County as these restrictions have been put back into place. As of now 158 deaths have been attributed to Covid-19 in Macon County but new cases have been well below 100 daily for a week or so.

Not everyone is thrilled with the restrictions. Some local restaurants chose to not follow the restrictions due to the economic hardships they have had to endure. Texas Roadhouse in Forsyth was closed down by the health department after refusing to follow guidelines. Other restaurants seem to have taken it as a wake-up call and have chosen to either no longer offer inside dining, or just temporarily close completely.

On one hand it’s understandable why business owners would want to remain open but there’s many people who have seen the restrictions, and the response to the pandemic by the governor, to be political. Basically, anything the governor says or does, they have to be in complete opposition–just because. That’s politics for you.

Vaccine!

On Friday, December 11th to FDA approved Pfizer’s vaccine for emergency use. Some are eager to be the first in line to receive the vaccine while others are taking a wait and see approach. I myself will be waiting and learning as much as I can before feeling the vaccine is worth the risks.

Hospital workers are some of the first in line for the first shipments. In my hospital department, about 70-80% of us chose to not have the vaccine just yet. It might be different in other departments but many of us are weary of taking something that is so new.

We’ve all seen those drug commercials for medications with possible side effects ranging from a slight rash to spontaneous internal combustion. There’s good cause to want to be well-informed before taking anything.

Again, I’m going to wait awhile to see if there’s any strange or harmful reactions. In the testing phase the vaccine has been shown to be safe but still…

Oh, and like usual there are silly “news” stories out there about the vaccine. There’s one ridiculous story going around claiming that it kills 26% of those who take it. Seriously! If you’re going to make up a lie at least make it believable. The sad thing is, some people are believing it.

Fighting against misinformation, fake news, and straight up lies has been a recurring theme throughout this year, really over the past few years. I’m not sure how the Internet can combat it.

50

Another momentous event occurred this past week and that was me turning 50. 50!!!!! When I wake up in the morning with all my aches and pains I feel every bit 50 but most of the time I still feel the same way I did 30 years ago. I’m still me, just older, whatever that means. Wiser? Closer to death? Eh, whatever. Getting older really didn’t bother me this year. I’m still alive and so is my family, so why complain?

I knew you were waiting for me!

I also came home with a brand-new car on my birthday but not the one I wrote about previously. After weeks of car shopping which I turned into a far more arduous quest than it really needed to be, I came across an ad on Facebook for the first car that caught my eye in the beginning of the journey but one I didn’t think I could afford.

I clicked on the ad, punched in some numbers to see what the payment might be and the sales manager popped up in a chat and asked me what car I’d like a good price on. I told him and he came back with a price. He figured in my trade in and came back with a monthly payment I could live with, and in less than 10 minutes I pretty much bought the car.

That’s my kind of car buying experience.

Yes, I had to go to the dealer, test drive and sign papers but it was a painless process and I came home with a car I am crazy about. It’s the 2021 Subaru Forester Sport.

If you haven’t driven a newer car lately you’ll probably be shocked by what they’re capable of. This one can steer the car and keep it in the middle of a lane. It can stop itself to prevent a collision. I can turn it on from an app and locate it on a map whenever I choose.

There’s so many buttons, screens with menus, and cameras in so many places. Driving home from Champaign where I purchased it, I was a bit overwhelmed by all the technology. I was afraid to push the wrong button and cause the transmission to fall out of it or something.

I was reminded of the student driver who thought “P” stood for Pass on the Interstate. The instructor told him to pass a vehicle, so he switched to P and destroyed his parents brand-new car’s transmission. This really happened. Not fake news.

My long commute to work popped up after firing up Apple Car Play. This is going to be great for road trips!

It began to rain on the trip home and I panicked a little because I didn’t know how to turn on the windshield wipers. Luckily, I figured it out quickly but this is the first car I had to watch YouTube videos to learn how to turn on the heater. I sat in my driveway for 15 minutes trying to figure it out until my son came out of the house, sensing my distress, and immediately knew how to turn it on as soon as he sat in the car.

Don’t you hate it when kids do that? Well, at least I won’t freeze to death this winter.

Even though when driving, I sometimes feel like I’m flying a plane without any training I do love all the technology. What can I say? I’m a geek.

This week has been eventful and I hope the vaccine and other coming vaccines put an end to the pandemic. Looks like there’s light at the end of the tunnel. What a year.

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