Local Businesses Die While We Live in Quarantine

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Picture your favorite local businesses, not counting grocery stores, or corporate chains.

Think of the people who work there; how familiar they are to you, and you to them. Maybe you even greet one another by name. Maybe you, your friends and family have been customers at those places for years, even decades.

Imagine how you’d feel if you learned that your favorite business had suddenly closed, not because the owners had chosen to happily retire and move to Maui, but because the COVID-19 pandemic caused so many customers – like you, like me – to stay away and the business died.

For my mental image of one of my favorite businesses, I have in mind La Cabana Mexican Restaurant in downtown Redding. I love their food, but I love the family who owns and operates the restaurant even more, which is saying a lot.

Here’s a photo of  just the sisters.

La Cabana is family-owned and operated. Meet the sisters.

I’ve been a La Cabana regular since the restaurant opened in 1996. I say I’m a regular, but come to think of it, I’ve not been there since the whole COVID-19 catastrophe blew up. Things have been so crazy, you know, what with learning the art of social distancing, and reading everything about COVID-19, and shopping for enough food and toilet paper to self-quarantine for two weeks.

I won’t flatter myself into thinking that La Cabana will collapse if I’m not there for 14 days, but the thing is, what if everyone – all the customers – stayed away for days, weeks and eventually, months? That’s pretty much what’s happened at not just La Cabana, but scores of small north-state businesses, most of which were getting by OK, but didn’t have a lot of financial wiggle room. As a small-business owner, I am woefully aware of how that reality works.

In these last few days I’ve heard politicians promise to help the American people cope during this pandemic crisis. I don’t know about you, but I don’t see the Calvary riding into Shasta County any time soon; certainly not soon enough to keep all these small businesses from going broke before help arrives. Of course, I understand they’re not up there as a presidential priority, like an airline, casino or cruise-line company, for example.

I’ve lived in Redding since I was 5, and in that time I’ve bitterly lamented the loss of so many precious businesses that went away and never returned. The Redding Bakery, Glovers’ Toy Store, Humble Pie, River City Bar and Grill, The Carriage House, The Cake Company, Thompson’s, Giramonte’s, Oh gosh, I must be old because I could list dead businesses all the live-long day.

We can weep and wail our heads off, but the fact is there’s no raising of the dead when it comes to a closed business, unless there’s an honest-to-God feathers-and-gold-dust miracle. Once a business is dead and departed, it’s lost and gone forever.

Imagine for a moment what the essence of our city would be like if all those lively, wonderful local  businesses we love so dearly were suddenly gone. Places like La Cabana could be quickly replaced with McDonald’s or something like it because billionaire corporations will be the only businesses with enough money left to carry on after all the local business have died. And what happens to the good people whose businesses die; people who’ve slaved and invested every last cent to make a go of it?

Well, goodbye happy life; hello bankruptcy, homelessess, foreclosure and poverty.

Our city has flaws-a-plenty, but its local businesses and hard-working business people help make Redding as bearable as it is. Without locally owned businesses, Redding would become just another corporate, robotic,  imitation-vanilla cookie-cutter soulless I-5 pit stop. Heat would be its most memorable feature.

Yes, the COVID-19 disaster has the entire world in the vortex of an undeniable, horrifying emergency. As a result, educated folks and scientists have advised us – especially Boomers and older – to stay inside as much as possible. They explain that social distancing not only keeps me from being infected and kicking the bucket before my time, but it keeps me from infecting others, since there’s no way of knowing – since testing is pretty much MIA – how many asymptomatic folks are blissfully walking around, coughing and sneezing into salad bars, ignorantly infecting others with a potential death sentence. So yes, self-quarantining is a big safety deal.

Even so,  truth be told I’m not one bit happy being on house arrest, minus the Shasta County ankle bracelet. I’m as ticked as anyone to miss out on some important events that I was really looking forward to, including an annual girlfriends’ getaway in Plymouth. And it literally makes me sick to my stomach to consider that I might miss a granddaughter’s birthday, to the point where I don’t even allow myself to think about it.

But I would probably feel far sicker if I became infected with COVID-19. And I’d have a hard time facing myself in the mirror each day if I knew I’d passed on the virus to someone else, especially an  elderly person, or someone with a compromised immune system. So I’m lucky because I’m alive, I’m healthy and I have at least two weeks’ worth of supplies.

So here I am, at home, right where I’m supposed to be. Of course it’s prudent to stay inside and not venture out for food.

Right?

Well, perhaps.

The fact is, I believe it’s possible to practice social distancing while still supporting the businesses we adore enough to help in their darkest hours, so they’ll be there when we’re back in the light again.

We have loopholes through which we can throw economic lifesavers to local businesses, especially restaurants. We can have food delivered. We can call in an order, and drive to pick it up. Or, if you don’t want to leave the car, you can bet that someone inside that business will be happy to run it to your car. We can order food to be delivered elsewhere as expressions of gratitude, such as to the front-line angels who work in hospitals and doctors offices and fire departments and police departments and post offices and even grocery stores. We can order surprise food for a friend who’s sheltering in place, but who hates to cook, or who’s running low on food. We can buy gift cards for the oh-happy-days that are surely coming when, as our president likes to say, the virus finally flows away.

This is such an important moment, and it’s up to us to either use it or lose it. We can take decisive, immediate action to support our favorite businesses in creative ways, while simultaneously practicing common sense and social distancing. If that’s not a win-win, then I don’t know what is.

Or, we could do nothing. Then, someday, when the coast is clear, and we get the CDC’s glory-hallelujah green light to leave our homes, visit restaurants and pop by our favorite businesses, it will be too late. They’ll be gone.

Just add them to the list of COVID-19 casualties.

Doni Chamberlain
Independent online journalist Doni Chamberlain founded what’s now known as anewscafe.com in 2007 with her son, Joe Domke. Chamberlain is an award-winning newspaper opinion columnist, feature and food writer recognized by the Associated Press, the California Newspaper Publishers Association and E.W. Scripps. She lives in Redding, California.
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56 Responses

  1. Avatar bruce vojtecky says:

    I would like to point out a problem, at least here in Phoenix, that all the bars and cafes closing or reducing sit down service has affected. The Homeless. The food banks down here are running out of supplies because a large amount of donations came from local restaurants. Now that has dropped to a trickle. I saw that yesterday at St Marys Food Bank as I handed a small bag to a homeless man. He was pained at how little he got but said nothing, he was just grateful for what he got. St Marys has strict requirements for all volunteers and in fact there is a bigger chance of me catching the virus from him than vice versa. But I have access to quality healthcare where he does not.
    As far as Social Distancing that is a concern for the homeless shelters, all are full, down here. Nobody knows what to do so any suggestions would not be wrong. I have not seen that the homeless are infected yet, that could obviously change, and then I would have to make a bitter choice.
    I saw on the news that San Francisco, is it true, has sentenced hundreds of the elderly to almost certain death because they are closing elder housing. Is that fake news, I don’t know that is why I am asking.

  2. Avatar Urban Prophet says:

    “You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
    Nor of the arrow that flies by day,

    Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness,
    Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.

    A thousand may fall at your side,
    And ten thousand at your right hand;
    But it shall not come near you.

    Only with your eyes shall you look,
    And see the reward of the wicked.”

    Psalm 91

    • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

      Now Jesus was a social drinker
      He never drank alone
      He never partied at a strip club
      Keeping his woman up at home
      Or overstayed his welcome
      Or threw up in your sink
      Nah, Jesus was never late to work, man
      And he always pulled his weight

      So tell you where it hurts
      And I’ll tell you what to feel
      Wash me in the water mama
      And I’ll wash you in the water

      —”Jesus was a Social Drinker,” Chuck Prophet

      Not exactly up to speed with the social distancing, but there’s reciprocal washing in the chorus.

  3. Avatar Paul says:

    To be fair, wasn’t Thompson’s and Redding french close due to retirement?

    • I didn’t attribute reasons for the closure of all those businesses (and scores of others). My point was that they’re gone, and I’m bummed about it, but once a business closes, it doesn’t come back (unless, as Steve points out, it’s a planned closure, like happens at Cafe Maddalena each winter).

  4. Avatar Doug Cook says:

    I am so glad that I retired from the restaurant business when I did. I would hate to have to navigate through this crisis. What I would suggest, if you are staying away from your favorite restaurant for the time being, go and buy gift certificates from them. Buy some for your friends. Help these businesses by keeping some cash flowing.

    • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

      I can’t really think of a worse business to be in right now than the food and libations industry. I’d be tempted to just close the doors for a month rather than go upside-down every day. There are places in the sub-tropics where the trade winds die for a couple of months every year, the humidity gets unbearable, and the tourists don’t show. Places close, and many of the business owners wander off in search of altitude.

      • Steve, I agree with you that food and drink establishments (especially drink) are in the least enviable place right now. All my crazy fantasies I ever had about opening a restaurant are out the window now.

        And you’re right that sometimes places close for seasonal reasons, and then reopen. Cafe Maddalena, in Dunsmuir, which I once referred to (in a column about restaurants that had memorable negative backlash) as my favorite Redding restaurant, does exactly that each winter, and then reopens, I believe, in time for some fishing season to accommodate the tourists. So, true, maybe that could work, for some restaurants to just shut their doors for a month, or two, or so … The tricky part would be how to survive financially that long without income. It’s a rare business that can last for months without income, unless it’s built into their annual plan, and they look at that time as a little vacation, a time to do repairs and take a break. That would be really nice if that were possible for restaurants until the virus disaster is gone. (Any guesses how long that might be?)

        • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

          Something that I’ve pondered and not said out loud (until now): The downside of flattening the curve effectivley is that it requires a prolonged period of social distancing. To work, people have to be patient for an extended period of time. So, perversely, the better we perform at social distancing and combatting the pandemic, the longer the curve spreads out over time, and the harder it’s going to be on businesses.

          My daughter pointed this out, and is among those who took a pledge to shop locally, however they can pull it off. It’d be easier to order everything from Amazon and those prepared meal services, but try to minimize it.

          Our household is doing our best to shop locally to the extent we can. Groceries, yes. We haven’t yet taken the step of supporting restaurants by ordering take-out. It would be useful for restaurants to respond to Doni’s invitation to describe what extra precautions they’re taking.

          • Hmm, that’s an interesting take on it, and it makes sense. Soooo, might it better to pull the BandAid off more quickly, rather than drag it out?

            Steve, to your point about letting the public know about extra precautions they’re taking since the pandemic hit, ANC is accepting press releases from businesses that are taking steps to mitigate the virus issue, both in terms of offering new services (like take-out and delivery) but also taking the safety and sanitation routines to higher level. We encourage businesses to describe those changes, much as La Cabana does here in their press release.

            https://anewscafe.com/2020/03/16/redding/la-cabana-mexican-restaurant-now-delivers/

      • Avatar Candace says:

        My nephew owns a successful restaurant in Portland but it’s barely over a year old. He voluntarily closed his doors but is still offering free delivery. His small staff is working without him right now as his roommate is demonstrating symptoms of the virus but can’t seem to get a reply from his doctor. They are both self- quarantining at home. He’s more worried about being able to pay his staff than he is about his own health. Of course they’ll be looking into unemployment benefits. I worry about both things. I see people stepping up in his community ( along with family) helping with cash donations. Every bit helps, gift cert, etc. no matter how small.

        • Oh, Candace, I’ve followed your nephew’s restaurant on FB, and what a heart-breaker it is that he’s going through this, especially for such a young business. My best wishes to him and his roommate for a full physical and financial recovery.

    • I’d love to know more about your restaurant some day, Doug. Was it here in Redding?

      Yes, I suggested gift cards as an option. The good thing about buying them now is that, as you say, it gives a cash infusion to the restaurant when they really need it. The only caution would be that everyone doesn’t redeem them at the same time, when the crisis is over, and everyone returns to restaurants again.

      • Avatar Doug Cook says:

        I was the GM at Cattlemens Restaurant here in Redding for 16 years. Great company, great owners. It’s a tough job, a tough industry. I had between 50-60 employees at the time I left in 2013. Lot of work but a lot of fun.

        • Interesting, Doug. You know, I’ve not been to Cattlemens for years, but I’ll bet I was last there when you were the GM, and my experience was a good one, I believe at a big retirement dinner for someone. I was impressed with the food and staff. I have no doubt you ran a tight ship and were good at what you did. But I’ll bet it feels good to be retired now.

  5. Avatar Linda Cooper says:

    La Cabana! That mention certainly made the impact on a small business real. It felt like I saw that family grow up, and well I did. One Mother’s Day, we ate there. They gave a rose to each woman who came in, including me. l like the gift card idea.

  6. Avatar Richard Christoph says:

    Excellent thoughts, Doni. I might add that though many have sustained significant financial market losses, some of us are better positioned than others to support our favorite local business by purchasing gift cards for friends, family, tenants, and/or employees. This is the time for deployment of one’s accumulated capital for the common good, and as James 4:17 states, ” Therefore, to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.”

    • I love it, Richard. Amen to that!

      Speaking of which, have you noticed how many great quotes and scriptures are found here in the comments? This is my first exposure to the James 4:17 scripture. What a world if everyone subscribed to that philosophy. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Avatar Patrecia Barrett says:

    I’m so glad La Cabana is featured in this article. It not only has great food, but the wonderful family who runs it has been very generous to and supportive of the community, going back many years.

    I hope long-time businesses like La Cabana (who it seems have been around forever, and are basically local institutions) can make a go of it through this crisis with deliveries, pick-up orders, etc.

  8. One thing I forgot to mention, is that I realize that many people’s wallets are stretched mighty thin right now, and may not be able to order out or buy gift cards.

    So another, no-cost way to help is to spread the word on FB or wherever to remind others of your favorite places, and encourage people who do have extra cash to support those places.

  9. Avatar Judy Salter says:

    Holiday market and Costco are hiring right now to help People laid off by the closure!!

  10. Avatar EL says:

    The food sample people at Costco are still working cleaning up the carts and tables with spray bottles. I overheard one of them saying it was a corporate decision to them employed. Hope we can see more like what Mark Cuban is proposing for his employees.

  11. James Montgomery James Montgomery says:

    Thank you for a glimpse of sanity, Doni. The price of panic may be as great as the cost of the actual disease.
    The first thing to remember is that we are all going to get this disease, eventually, and the vast majority of us will be just fine, health-wise. If you think you will avoid it altogether, you are almost certainly wrong. It is now endemic in the world. I will get it, and you will get it, eventually.
    Of course it makes sense to slow this thing down, to avoid overloading our medical resources. Yep, I’m washing my hands thoroughly and wiping down hard surfaces, avoiding unnecessary close contact and hand-shaking, all the reasonable precautions. I do not French-kiss strangers on the street.
    The fear-mongers appear to have won the day, shutting down the economy too soon, and wasting valuable resources. Resources we may need before this thing is over. If it lasts 2 weeks, poor people who can’t go to their jobs will be ok. If it lasts a month, some of them will go under. If it lasts 2 months, we will see a surge in bankruptcy, homelessness and power shut-offs.
    Some of the things that do not shut down: rent, mortgage payments, utility payments, credit card payments and taxes. For a lot of people, Covid is less harmful than not being able to work.
    I, for one, intend to go about my life. I know I’m a nutcase, but I prefer to risk death (I AM classified as frail elderly, now) over huddling in fear. I am virtually certain to get the disease, anyway. If I die of it, at least I won’t have died cringing in the corner.
    One more thing. Thank you for reminding me of La Cabana. Because of Darlene’s food allergies, I seldom go to Mexican restaurants, anymore. I think I’ll go eat there soon, now that the crowds have thinned out.

    • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

      Yes, most of us are probably destined to get it sooner or later, assuming that none of the vaccines in the development stages work out.

      Self-satisfied crowing about how you won’t be caught huddling in fear is grotesquely egomaniacal. It doesn’t negate concerns about everyone getting COVID-19 more or less at once and overwhelming our healthcare system, as is occurring in several other countries that acted sluggishly. I don’t want people I care about dying in isolation in critical care tents erected in parking lots, with triage prescriptions dictating which third of the stricken don’t get any treatment because there aren’t enough respirators to go around, as in Italy.

      The response to this pandemic is like a host of similar “Tragedy of the Commons”-like social phenomena—from vaccine herd immunity to hybrids vs. monster trucks. Some sacrifice even though they know others who refuse to do so will also benefit. Then, paradoxically, those who did nothing but shared the benefit will invariably claim that the risk was overblown or a hoax, and a waste of time and money.

      What’re ya gonna do? It’s the way of the world.

      • Avatar Candace says:

        Steve, I agree with all you just said. Also it is not guaranteed nor logical to say “ we’ll all get it”. There’s no way to predict that and the reason for all the sane precautions is so that hopefully we indeed don’t “all get it”. Shouldn’t we all be willing to do our individual best in the hopes that that doesn’t prove out?!

    • James, that’s the thing about taking precautions, which may or not be considered fear-mongering, because if this coronavirus fizzles out without taking many lives, then those who thought this was overkill (so to speak), will say, “See! It was all for nothing!”

      But if we were to go about our lives with our old cross-contaminating germy ways, and all hell broke lose and it made the Spanish Flu pale in comparison, then history would mock us for being ignorant and reckless. I think I’d rather err on the side of public safety, and do our best to help people whose businesses are most at risk during this pandemic.

      Having said all that, I understand where you’re coming from, with the “we’re all going to get it anyway” mentality, because I wrestle with how aggressive my social distancing should be (grandchildren, family, close friends, all of whom have their contacts, too). For example, today I’m making corned beef and cabbage (Happy St. Patrick’s Day), and my natural inclination to to have someone over, Joe’s grandma, my sister, Matt around the corner, etc. But I don’t, because, see my point above about others’ contacts. And that feels really lousy right now.

      But of course, the other part of the equation, the part that stops me short from behaving as if I can make SD exceptions, is that the virus might inadvertently infect someone whose immune system is compromised, like this 21-year-old soccer coach, who died.

      https://nypost.com/2020/03/16/soccer-coach-dies-from-coronavirus-at-age-21/

      I smiled at your observation about dining-in at restaurants during this scare, as many restaurants are nearly empty, and you might be the lone diner with the place all to yourself (while the staff works on to-go orders).

      https://www.edwardhopper.net/nighthawks.jsp

      And yes, please remember La Cabana. (Ask for “Doni’s salad” which is really Yesenia Manzo’s creation: Basically the insides of their delicious fish taco, but no tortilla, topped with bacon and other wonderful ingredients on a bed of lettuce with pico de gallo and guacamole. It’s my favorite Mexican-food keto option. In fact, that will be one of my first to-go orders this week.

    • Avatar bruce vojtecky says:

      James, I agree. One other thing the fear mongers have done is to convince people that everybody could/might/if will catch COVI and probably already have and now millions of us are walking around infecting others. I continue volunteering at St Marys Food Bank, where the majority of our customers are Mexicans, despite the fear mongers claiming that Mexicans are rapists, murderers, drug dealers, disease carrying and a threat to the nation. That is untrue so why would I believe the COVI fear mongers. Right now I read how ICE is carrying out searches in southern California, supposedly on lockdown, to protect the community from these Mexican criminals, their words not mine.
      And my daughter works in Phoenix healthcare and is privy to real COVI news that officials keep from the main news. And so far in Arizona no one is dying in tents or nursing homes, yet.

      • Avatar Candace says:

        I highly doubt that the “Mexicans are rapists, etc.” fear mongers are the same as what you’re referring to as the “Covi 1 fear mongers”. The latter is based on facts; the first one is not. No matter how many people jump on board to defend your actions it doesn’t negate the fact that you willfully may be endangering others lives, including the one’s you’re volunteering to hand out food to. That’s not fear-mongerimg, that’s fact. Listen to the Medical Experts; they’re trying to save lives.

  12. Avatar Linda Cooper says:

    My niece today reminded me that making a broth with onions and garlic for starters, is a good way to support the immune system. If I had a restaurant, I would be thinking about making soup. It could even be pre-packed in quart takeout containers, and folks could pick it up cold and re-heat. Meanwhile, I’m going to acquire the ingredients today.

    • Linda, what an awesome idea for a business! Comfort soups to the rescue! Delivered!

      If I weren’t already spinning enough plates, I’d jump on this myself. Here in Redding there’s Sizzle’s Commercial Kitchen on Placer, which can be rented out to do big batches of cooking in a clean, county-inspected environment.

      First soup: Classic chicken soup.

      • Avatar Linda Cooper says:

        Doni, yes, even though I’m in Chico now, I too thought of the Sizzle’s Commercial Kitchen. But really, any restaurant could do this to supplement the “hard times.” FB offers endless recipes for (fighting) I don’t like that term, the flu and other viruses. If I ran the zoo, I would be real about it. By that I mean using serious nutritional ingredients. Don’t know if it’s a get rich thing, but it would certainly help those who can’t leave their homes, and desire real eats. People are already thinking about food as another “hope to healing.” I shopped at the health food store today, and the previously mentioned onions and garlic bins were empty until tomorrow. Interesting. Further, even though you have a lot of “spinning enough plates,” I enjoyed how your put some ideas out for others. Really, I would pay for some serious soup to be delivered to my door, along with helping others.

        Classic chicken soup, for your soul
        Grandma’s soothing vegetable soup
        The real deal soup for vegetarians
        Immunity soup – Includes onion and garlic
        Organic calming soup

        Obviously, not great titles, but I had fun.

  13. Avatar Barbara Stone says:

    I have seen two vehicles from the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services here in town, in fact, one is in our parking lot as I type. Anyone know why?

  14. Market Street & Tehema Street Suite 101 2010-2013 our Family’s global business opened in a humble suite. We started in 2005 at the Lee Ranch House in Weaverville 2005-2009. Now we are transitioning into a Online Shoppe. After the Carr ? Fire our studio on Victor Avenue launched a new Clay Haven in the Autumn of 2018 but unfortunately lost thousands and we had to move. The after shocks of the Carr Fire economy really challenged us to rethink our business. After investing thousands of $$$$ Downtown and working three jobs (between my husband and I) we HAD to be creative! We are Artisans and very innovative therefore we are already ahead of this new tragedy. Art brings hope to our hearts and our communities.
    I believe Redding, my hometown 1972-now, is resilient. Hold my hand as we walk through the valley of the shadow of death. I am staying to see new mercies every morning and am grateful for my Friends and Family in Redding and around the globe who share our inspirational art : http://www.facebook.com/HavenArtStudio

  15. Steve Du Bois Steve Du Bois says:

    Just finished eating at La Cabana. No customers when I arrived. But people did come in after me. I like to think they followed me there. Heh, heh! It’s been a few years. So thanks for writing about them and the situation facing small business owners. I love their food. Nice environment. I was surprised to see Joe. It was nice to finally meet him. It’s obvious he’s a great guy, Doni. You’ve got a good son there.

    • So glad you were able to enjoy a La Cabana meal.

      Joe was happy to meet you, too. And you’re right that he is a great guy and good son. (He’s one of two sons, but awesome human beings.)

  16. Avatar Candace says:

    I find it utterly remarkable how some people think they’re smarter than all the health experts who ate telling us to stay home and in turn are willing to play Russian Roulette with theirs and others lives. No sense in sugar-coating it, it’s worse than reckless. All one needs to do is look towards Italy. If that’s not sobering enough I don’t know what is. Not feeling the need to be “polite” about this. Yes, it’s inconvenient and yes, it’s hard and not what we’re used to. If you can stay home, stay home; other’s lives are depending on you doing so.

    • Steve Du Bois Steve Du Bois says:

      Let’s not go overboard. I understand what you’re stating and gave it serious thought. Everyone at the restaurant is doing things to be cautious. I encounter more people at the stores and standing in line using the same card readers for payment. The restaurant is far safer than the stores. I had to go out today-a MUST. I encountered more risk as you might put it. I felt safe at the restaurant.

  17. Avatar Candace says:

    Steve D , I wasn’t referring to you personally, I don’t know your age. Nor am I singling out any business trying to stay afloat while implementing safe practices. My apology if you took it that way ( which makes sense because of the order in which I commented). That said, what’s driving me crazy are all the mixed messages happening on social media and local news sites ( NOT ANC) that in turn spur on the Covid-19. naysayers. Example: last night I watched our local Channel 7 newscasters (which is something I rarely do) discuss the importance of staying home if you can along with the importance off practicing social distancing, going so far as pointing out how far away they were seated from one another. Good. BUT immediately after saying that they merrily reported which bars/breweries would remain open and at what capacity in Chico today for St. Paddy’s Day. Huh?! How is that helpful when millennials are being asked to stay out of packed bars?! It’s like people have lost all matter of common sense. This isn’t a team sporting event where we should be picking sides as to who wants to implement best practices. It’s a goddamn Pandemic and we should be focused on saving as many lives as possible. With that, I’m done commenting on anything on ANC having to do with this virus, as I truly, with every fibre of my being, believe it’s not something we should be batting about as food for thought as to whether or not one follows the medical experts advice as to how we should be behaving. It’s crazy making to me.

  18. Steve Du Bois Steve Du Bois says:

    If you’re reading comments still, Candace, well said. I had outpatient surgery today. Was there 7 hours because they had to go in 3 times to cut out a benign cancer tumor that was HUGE under my skin. There was a BIG hole in my chest. I mean BIG! So I’m thinking seriously about this. I’m well informed. And I will keep you and our community in my heart. Thanks for sharing how you feel. Your opinion matters.

  19. Avatar bruce vojtecky says:

    I went last Thursday to my primary care doctor, an actual doctor not a PA. He has a Sonora Quest lab, which can and does COVI testing, on site. He said I was healthy and did not need to be tested for COVI. Yet the fear mongers on here, with no medical degree or equipment, want to tell me what is best for me. My answer, or rather question, to them is have you been tested? If not, why?

  20. Avatar Candace says:

    Steve, I’m so very happy your tumor was benign. I’m a breast cancer survivor. We’re two of the lucky ones. Take good care.

  21. Avatar Barbara Durel says:

    Doni thank you for sharing suggestions on how to try to support small businesses and the hardworking owners/employees that they are comprised of. We are all doing what we can to be mindful and careful & wiping down everything, avoiding handshaking, etc to minimize exposure while trying to figure out how to get through this without going out of business. The last few years have been challenging and just when things started to pick up this horrible virus appeared.

  22. Avatar Doug Cook says:

    I just pulled into Portland today, there is not one restaurant open that I can see. Everything bus shut down here.

    • I’m trying to imagine what it will be like for travelers heading up and down the I-5 corridor. I guess fast-food places are all still open, right?

      • Avatar Doug Cook says:

        From what I saw yesterday driving to Portland, many restaurants are open in Oregon, but for take out only. Fast food places have closed dining areas but still open for drive thru. There is very little traffic on the roads. In Portland, all restaurants are completely closed. I didn’t see any doing take out.

        • Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

          I was headed in the opposite direction yesterday on I-5, to Sactown. I was driving straight through, but it looked like all of the restaurants were either closed or lacking customers. Traffic was light, except for trucks.

          Rolling Hills Casino was open, and the parking lot was packed. They closed down today, though. Win River closed a couple days ago.

  23. Avatar Katie says:

    The Womens Fund created a COVID-19 Relief Fund. https://www.shastarcf.org/funds/covid-19

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