We're just about a year into this COVID pandemic, and it is still an ongoing thing. While the pandemic lingers and will, I expect, continue to be with us for quite some time, some things have changed. Some little, some big.
I recall that one of the first public health messages, just a year ago, was to not wear masks. But that changed rapidly, so rapidly that it would be easy to forget that the very first reactions, by at least some authorities, were not in favour of masking. This is what science does -- learns and evolves.
A really huge change has been that people are being vaccinated in record-breaking time. The vaccines have been developed, tested, manufactured, shipped, distributed and injected within just a year. Just a year! By contrast, if I understand correctly, the previous record for the development and rollout of a new vaccine took 4 years. Science again: utterly remarkable, really.
While I know that the manufacture and distribution components are not going as fast as we'd like, I'd prefer not to whine or nag when so much has been accomplished against what would have seemed to be very long odds.
On a local and lesser level, our grocery store has evolved too.
My routine has been to schedule my orders and pickup for Tuesdays and then begin my next order when the new weekly flyers and sales come out, around Thursday.
I don't have to complete the order right when I begin it on Thursday. I just need to put a few items into my online cart in order to snag a pickup time for 11AM the following Tuesday. I am subsequently able to add to the order until the clock strikes midnight, Monday (going from Sunday to Monday if that confuses you as it sometimes does me).
The store then emails, texts and calls (Yes! all 3) sometime after 10 on Tuesday to tell me that the order will be ready at 11 and to let me know if there have been any omissions or substitutions.
Yesterday, they didn't do this.
Hmm. I had the sneaky suspicion that something was amiss and that it would be my fault. Naturally.
With a feeling of foreboding, I checked my cart on the app and had an uh oh moment when I saw that it was still full because it should have shown as empty after midnight Monday once the order was locked in. This meant that I had not secured my pickup time. I surmise that I forgotten the payment step, and so my scheduled pickup time had been withdrawn.
I checked available time slots and was very surprised to see that I could still reserve a time for 2 o'clock on the very same day, just 3 hours later than my preferred time.
And that, right there, is the change. For when the pandemic first hit, it took me weeks to finally nail a pickup time for my first order. I remember calling the company in utter frustration, wondering if the app was broken. It wasn't. The system had been suddenly overwhelmed.
Now, I can, apparently, make and pickup an order with just a few hours notice. I hadn't realized this improvement until just yesterday.
I am impressed how the company/store adapted to meet the profound new need. This is such a change since last year -- a little change in the grand scheme of things, but a much appreciated one, nevertheless.
Changes. Some huge, some little. All beneficial. All appreciated.