Restaurant closed
Photograph ©2020 by Brian Cohen.

Now May Arguably Be the Worst Time of the Pandemic of 2019 Novel Coronavirus

Now is arguably the worst time of the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic, as we seem to be experiencing a combination of the worst of life as we once knew it with the worst of what has been called the “new normal”, as a number of jurisdictions have either slowed, stopped, or reversed the process of reopening the economy while the wearing of masks or cloth coverings for the face are being required or mandated in a growing number of places — such as in the public areas of hotel and resort properties and aboard airplanes as two of numerous examples.

Now May Arguably Be the Worst Time of the Pandemic of 2019 Novel Coronavirus

Playground Closed to Public
Photograph ©2020 by Brian Cohen.

Even though the number of cases of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus have increased in the United States in recent weeks — which have caused travel companies to impose increased restrictions and policies upon their employees and customers — some lodging companies have no longer extended the waiver of penalties and fees to their change and cancellation policies; while at least one airline has been gradually reintroducing ancillary fees to customers.

Some airlines have decided to no longer require that the middle seat remain blocked and therefore empty; and some airplanes have been flying at or near full capacity — but with fewer airplanes, fewer employees, and even fewer destinations, schedules of flights are not nearly as flexible as they were prior to the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic.

mask
Photograph ©2020 by Brian Cohen.

The wearing of masks or cloth coverings for the face have become a political battle, with people who do not want to — or cannot — wear masks being scolded by others and even being called murderers.

Many jurisdictions worldwide either still have their borders closed to visitors; or have implemented mandatory quarantine measures — typically 14 days — which must be fulfilled prior to visiting. You can check these two reliable resources of countries with updated travel entry restrictions due to the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic.

Sales at restaurants have still not returned to the levels seen prior to the pandemic; but meals are either more expensive or offer less food for the same price — and some restaurants may even be employing methods of saving money which may be suspect

…and yet, the offers and coupons for dining out which were available prior to the pandemic are nowhere to be found now — even though millions of people are still unemployed…

…and for at least consecutive 17 weeks, greater than one million people are added to the ranks of unemployment. How are these people supposed to return to travel or to dining establishments when they have no income — and possibly limited or no insurance — with few to no incentives to do so?

empty shelves
Photograph ©2020 by Brian Cohen.

Tons of food has literally been tossed out instead of sold because of the general disruption of the supply chain, as prices in grocery stores have increased to the highest levels in almost 50 years; and the overall selection has tightened to the point at which certain products are either in short supply — or are no longer being produced altogether. How are executive lounges and airport lounges supposed to offer complimentary food and beverages at this time?

Vehicular traffic has increased in many areas of the United States to the point where traffic jams have returned.

Although it is still not as expensive as it was this time last year, the price for a gallon of gasoline has nearly doubled since April of 2020 — which is only three months ago — when it had reached lows that had not been seen in the United States in decades. The increase in demand for fuel is one reason why this is happening.

SunTrust Park
Photograph ©2017 by Brian Cohen.

Professional sports are slowly returning — notably, the return of Major League Baseball with opening day scheduled for Thursday, July 23, 2020 — but with no one in the stands to watch the games live, in most cases.

Summary

Photograph ©2020 by Brian Cohen.

I first started writing this article greater than three months ago — but the situation pertaining to the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic seemed to keep worsening and worsening…

…and the countless sensationalist articles which pervaded the media of both false hope that things were indeed improving and the number of cases spiking — along with the inept leadership of politicians and executives of corporations, the senseless looting and destructive rioting which occurred in the United States alongside of what were otherwise peaceful protests, and society being inured to the confusion caused by the mixed information which was released by what are supposed to be reliable authorities who are knowledgeable about pandemics and contagious viruses — certainly did not help matters.

One thing to which I do ascribe is that this situation will eventually get better — although no one knows exactly how and when that will occur.

We simply have to be patient — as well as more tolerant of each other…

All photographs ©2017 and ©2020 by Brian Cohen.

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