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Back to having lots of meetings

By Staff | Jul 12, 2020

I did something this past week that I had not done in over four months.

I went to a Blue Earth Kiwanis Club meeting.

My four months away wasn’t because I have been way too busy to go to their weekly Tuesday noon meetings. Or that I didn’t care about Kiwanis and had lost interest in the club. Nothing could be further from the truth.

I had not been going because, of course, there have not been any Kiwanis Club meetings due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the way everything has been shut down.

I had actually missed a couple of meetings before the governor shut down everything in the state because I was on vacation first, then had that heart attack thing. So, the last meeting I was at was back in February, and that sure seems like a long, long time ago.

The Kiwanis Club meeting was at the China Restaurant. Many of us wore masks into and when leaving the restaurant. We practiced social distancing, spreading out over multiple tables in the back area of the restaurant. There were 14 of the 25 members present and one guest.

I also attended the Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors Club meeting last week, the first one in over four months.

It was much the same deal only it was at the Blue Earth Hometown Restaurant. We spread out over several tables for social distancing, which wasn’t hard since there were only four of us there.

I also attended the Blue Earth Economic Development Authority meeting last week. This was their second monthly meeting held in person at the City Hall since COVID-19 all started. I sat in the corner away from everyone else.

This coming Monday the Blue Earth Community Library Board will meet in person for the first time in, well, four months again. We will spread out and social distance, of course.

And after months of covering the Blue Earth City Council by listening in on a phone conference call while the council continued to all meet in person the media is now going to be allowed to attend in person.

So, what do you think? Does this all mean that things are getting back to normal? It does for me. It is, of course, a “new” normal, with masks and social distancing.

But is more normal than it has been. Most businesses and restaurants are open, although with new rules and lots of masks in place.

The question being debated everywhere is whether all this is being done too soon. Will it make the virus case numbers explode? That certainly seems to be the case in a lot of states, especially down south.

Only time will tell here, but I think it is not going to be as big a deal in our little rural area. As long as we stay smart and not gather in large groups in close quarters like we’ve seen in scenes of people crowded into bars and on beaches. It shows how dumb people can be when it comes to ignoring social distancing.

No wonder some places have seen explosions in coronavirus cases.

Now that we have survived the spring and summer and canceled so many regular events, everyone is now turning their attention and discussion on fall. And the big question is whether there will be “regular” school, or what will school look like. Will it be some in-person classes or going with some sort of distance learning or a combo of both.

It looks like we will know after July 26. That is when the state and governor will let us know how schools should operate this year.

And, will there be football and other fall sports, both in our schools and with pro sports? We’ve learned to live without the Twins. Can we possibly learn to live without the Vikings too?

My wife, Pam, says no problem. She’s not a sports fan. Sometimes I envy her.

There have been some plusses from this pandemic situation. Families have become closer in many cases, spending much more time together than ever before. And if you don’t want to go somewhere or do something you can just say, sorry can’t make it, I want to stay safe.

And we all have finished up lots of projects we had put off for years.

Of course, there is the bad side. Many people have gotten sick and lots have died from this virus. Many of us have been affected by it financially, and it has disrupted many lives.

So the question remains. Are we finally getting back to some sense of normal? And if we are, should we be, or should we still be very cautious.

Or is it a little bit of both?

We now have, or have had, 60 cases of the virus in Faribault County, with no deaths. While that is a fairly big number, it is much lower than every county around us.

I sure hope it stays that way.

I suggest we all do what we can to stay safe and healthy.