Thursday, March 26, 2020

Hello From Omaha
Hello Dearhearts and Gentlepeople,

Things here in Omaha have been quiet- you could almost literally hear a pin drop. We’ve been asked to only make necessary trips for food, medicine, and  the like for the past couple weeks, and much to my pleasant surprise, people are doing what’s asked. Today I needed to venture out for a few items and it was like emerging from hibernation.

Scenes of grocery store panic and crowds that are taking place across the country just haven’t happened in Omaha. We’re not stripping the shelves clean, and people are respectful of keeping distance . I bought enough that I won’t need to shop for several weeks, and I limited myself to one store figuring it would lessen my contacts with people and get me home quickly. I opted for the Fresh Thyme- an organic grocery with excellent prices on produce. There were signs asking people to limit their purchases of staples like potatoes, onions, and meat to two each. Otherwise there were no restrictions or shortages. 

There were perhaps a dozen people there, and everyone was behaving nicely. I am SO proud of my fellow Omahans. We were asked to do something, and we are doing it. Most stores have closed, and many people are working from home. So far, we’ve been lucky, and I can’t help but think that has a lot to do with Nebraskans doing what we do best- avoiding each other! 

We have been getting regular briefings from our governor, mayor, and head of the Douglas County Health Department. The head of the health department is very no- nonsense so when she issued the order to close bars and restaurants it was understood that this is serious. I believe she also warned people that we are “not special” which is the  sort of thing we all need to hear. I frequently joke that we’ll know how bad the outbreak is by whether Dr. Pour shows up for the briefing wearing a housecoat and no makeup . She’s easily the best dressed person in Nebraska, and if I’m honest I tune into the briefing as much for information as to check out Dr. Pour’s outfit. If she arrives in a housecoat, you know it is time to panic! Fortunately today she was immaculately turned out as usual. I noted the accessories, breathed a sigh of relief and put my trust in the Dr. Adi Pour Index of Doom as evidenced by wardrobe. I noted scarf, earrings, lipstick and nail varnish so we’re probably doing ok here in Douglas county. In all seriousness though, she’s always run that department extraordinarily well, and the pandemic hasn’t changed that. Trust in the people telling you what to do matters, and she’s demonstrated being worthy of that trust over and over. 

Mayor Stothert has also been doing an outstanding job of running the city at an extremely difficult time. She’s made a point of getting officials to update the public and hasn’t hid away in her office. Again, having someone trustworthy telling you what to do makes all the difference. 

I’m even going to say something nice about governor Ricketts. I didn’t vote for him, and in most cases would be opposed to everything he stands for, but in this situation, he’s been doing a fine job. I don’t know if the body snatchers got him, or he suddenly had a moment of enlightenment but whatever happened, he’s doing the job you expect a governor to do in an emergency without making it political. I never suspected there’d be a decent person in there, but I’m impressed by his performance so far. Unfortunately the governor has zero fashion sense so I don’t have a good index for reading him other than by what he says. 

We started social distancing early in Nebraska, and so far thst seems to be paying off. We will have a better idea over the next few weeks. It helps that we live in flyover country- no one comes to Nebraska unless they absolutely must.  That might just be what saves us.

I hope wherever you are you are safe and well. Hang in there everyone 💕


bahnwärterin said...

love the dr. pour index!
our young "ministerpresident" - something like a governor - is doing a brilliant job too in this hard times. and angie is the good mom of the nation again ;)
we try to make the best of the shot down, doing reparations and renovations and tackling long overdue projects finally. today the garden starts to taw - it was much more frozen the last 8 days then the whole winter, i blame the fewer flights and traffic and the shut down all over the world, the warming blanket of smog has some holes now - so i will venture there and start with the veggie beds.
stay safe and heathy, my dear! xxxxx

Beth Waltz said...

Your observation about the significance of Dr. Pour showing up in a housecoat and no makeup is seriously hilarious. Index of Doom, indeed!

Omahans on their best behavior in stores are setting a good example for other city dwellers. I'm proud to report Hoosiers, including medical folks and elected officials, are also displaying a mix of prudent pragmatism and determined optimism. No one anticipates this ordeal to end soon.

Your remark about being a flyover country tickled me. A family member has done business in Cape Verde. He says this nation of 5 islands has not only grounded their planes, but also turned off the lights at the airport. There is still much to be said for having a moat when a pandemic is abroad.

Emily said...

Your blue and black outfit is beautiful, and the woodland creatures around your head and shoulders give you the look of Snow White in the old Disney movie. : )

I am grateful that my supermarket is still pretty well stocked if I make an effort to go there bright and early in the morning. The shoppers are well behaved too.

Speaking of female doctors to trust and admire, Omaha has some terrific role models who work in science and medicine. CNN mentioned Drs. Jana Broadhurst and Angela Hewlett from the local biocontainment facility.

Omaha may be flyover country for most people, but as word gets out about all the fantastic things scientists and doctors are doing there, it will become a destination city for young people aspiring to do groundbreaking work in STEM.

Vix said...

Loving the Dr Pour index, long may she wear makeup and dress to the nines!
It's a shame my fellow Brits don't follow suit. We didn't have any problem when we went out for supplies yesterday but, there again, we weren't shopping for the elusive bog roll, bleach and hand sanitizer but the idiots are still going out en masse, picnicking in parks, driving to beauty spots and going off in caravans - this is the country that voted Brexit!
Stay safe! xxx

Señora Allnut said...

lovely to read that you are ok and that people around you are behaving nicely, even people who have to be in charge!.
Your 'Dr. Pour Index of Doom' made me laugh a lot!

Vronni's Style Meanderings said...

Interesting to note that two out of those competent senior people were women. I am impressed with the people of Omaha; well done! Most people in our town are observing the regulations but there are some arseholes around - aren't there always?

Stay safe and well, Goody.

Bibi Maizoon said...

We went into lockdown on March 24th here in Nepal. No warning, no nothing. The day before the lockdown a 19 yr old Nepali student returning from France tested positive 5 days after exiting the airport in Kathmandu. Efforts to trace all who were on the Qatar Air flight from Paris with her have proved futile. All borders were initially shut but the Tibetan/Chinese border reopened for cargo only 2 days ago. All foreign & domestic flights have stopped & there are an estimated 350 foreign tourists stuck here. The police have started beating lockdown violators with lathis (bamboo rods).
I told my husband about 3 weeks ago we were probably going to go on lockdown or would have food & fuel shortages due to Covid 19 so we had already stocked up. Ambulances are the only vehicles allowed on the streets so people with $ are using them as taxis to run clandestine errands. We have such frequent strikes and lockdowns that go on for weeks due to political problems here that Nepalis are used to being housebound for weeks at a time & usually keep supplies on hand.
Stay safe & well everyone! <3

Polyester Princess said...

I wish we had a Dr. Pour instead of a gloomy faced virologist with the most boring collection of jumpers ever. And I do admire the fact that your fellow Omahans are behaving so impeccably. When they announced here that the bars would have to close from 12.00 that night, several "lockdown" parties were held until midnight. And as non-essential shops had to close during the weekend (they are now closed for the duration) people flocked to Holland in their masses to go shopping. Most people seem to be social distancing, but there are still those who think the rules do not apply to them. The madness at the supermarkets has thankfully stopped, but instead of our usual, larger supermarket, Jos now shops mid-day at a smaller local one, where it's absolutely quiet and most things are in stock. Stay safe, Goody, we will get there at the end! xxx

Goody said...

Whatever you're doing in Germany, it must be working because your death rate is so much lower than the rest of the world. Keep doing it! Stay safe, and I look forward to your posts with pictures of your garden.

She was on the TV yesterday letting us all know how cross she was to drive past the Home Depot and see the parking lot packed. "Redecorating is NOT essential at this time!" Ouch.

We are so lucky to have that biocontainment unit here. I guess they have been planning for this stuff since the early 2000's and have been able to help the state manage without guidance from the federal gov't-in this case having our own experts to guide the state response has been very fortunate.

Nebraska has a lot going for it, even in the rural areas. But shhhh, we don't actually want people moving here and ruining it for the rest of us ;)

Stay safe. I hope you can get through this without needing to leave home much.

I'm ok for toilet paper but I really wish I'd thought to stock up on eyeliner! I've been taking short walks just around our small complex,but that's about it. I've heard people are cramming into home improvement stores, but I don't live near any to verify that. I do live next to a busy street that has been practically silent. Stay safe, and hope it passes by you quickly.

@Senora Alnut
Glad I could give you a laugh in these times. Please stay safe-we're thinking of you!

I would say these are two women you wouldn't want to make angry! I feel like we're in very good hands locally-wish I could say the same about the rest of the country. There's always people that think they're imortal, I guess. Stay safe and well.

I'm glad you had the sense to plan ahead and see what was coming. I think that's what saves us here too-living in a place prone to natural disasters does come with an increased awareness of preparedness proceedures. I must say though, having just bought a new car I am seriously angry to be stuck at home. I told Danny I was going to just sit in it and listen to the radio, but he thought it would look suspicious and someone might call the cops. Sigh. I hope you get through it quickly and maybe closing off the border quickly will have been a good decision.

I haven't heard about any parties locally, but I saw the news reports from Florida of the young people on spring break. I remember being young, but I don't think I was ever that stupid. I did look after a couple friends in the early time of the AIDS crisis,before any one knew how it spread. I didn't do it oblivious to the risks though.

Hope you and Jos are able to get through it easily. Stay safe and well.

Mim said...

It's nice to know people are being sensible where you are. It sounds like Nebraskans are very sensible, and that your state government has things under control, as far as control is possible. So glad to hear Clan Goodface is all healthy.

I think the only reason things won't be worse in the UK is that plenty of people started social distancing before the government announced we should be. (Funny how they stopped thinking 'herd immunity' was a good idea when they started catching it...)