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Daily Life

Shelter at Home Order Issued by Contra Costa and Other Bay Area Counties

I’ve been harping about coronavirus since before it was officially declared a pandemic, with increasingly distressing news from around the world, and now it has come to this. A Shelter at Home order in all of Contra Costa and other Bay Area counties, mandating people stay home except for essential needs through April 7th, punishable by fine, imprisonment, or both.

From the FAQ:

Vulnerable populations must stay home. Everyone should stay home except to get food, care for a relative or friend, get necessary health care, or go to an essential job. It is OK to go outside for walks if you are not in a group. It may be extended depending on recommendations from public health officials.

What’s Closed?

Dine-in restaurants
Bars and nightclubs
Entertainment venues
Gyms and fitness studios

• You cannot engage in group activities in person with others.
You cannot have dinner parties. You cannot invite friends over to your home to hang out.
You cannot go to a nail salon or get your hair cut by a stylist or barber.
• You cannot go shopping for non-essential goods.
• You cannot take unnecessary trips on public transport or in your car or motorbike.

Stay safe everyone!

Daily Life

Help for Small Businesses

Photo by Flickr user alachuacounty

As more and more restaurants, bars, cafes and shops are impacted by effects of the coronavirus pandemic, small businesses and their employees are surely suffering as they temporarily close or limit their capacity in order to stop the spread of the virus. Thanks to a reader for pointing out that there is a special Small Business Administration (SBA) disaster program specifically for coronavirus, providing low cost loans up to $2 million which you can find out about here. Contact your local chamber of commerce if interested.

Another reader also pointed out that many restaurants offer take-out services so help support local restaurants by ordering take-out when you can.

Daily Life

Schools Close across Contra Costa and Beyond

As coronavirus infections and deaths mount throughout the world, increasingly stringent orders are coming into effect locally in order to maintain social separation among people so as not to overwhelm hospitals. Schools are closing for multiple weeks coinciding with spring break. Check out the latest Bay Area school closures here. Are there any schools remaining open round here?

With many people working from home with school-aged kids, I imagine there will be plenty of  families at home together which should be quite an interesting experience!

Question of the Day

Question of the Day – How Bad is the Coronavirus Pandemic going to Get?

Photo by Unsplash user Kelly Sikkema

A little over two weeks ago there were zero local cases of coronavirus in Contra Costa with little concern among some who were more worried about spreading unfounded hysteria than the spread of the virus itself. Fast forward to today and at least 17 people in Contra Costa and thousands in the US are infected with coronavirus, with many more expected. Stocks are in a bear market with a 20+% drop over recent highs. The NBA, Coachella, and even Disneyland will close. Locally, most events and even schools are being cancelled with more  people working from home, leaving businesses like restaurants and cafes suffering from lack of diners.

Despite the gloomy news, some people aren’t worried and go on their day as if nothing changed besides possibly washing their hands more often. How much worse is this going to get? Will it peter out as summer approaches? Or will this lead to a recession with many more infections and deaths? Are you going to change your shopping patterns to go when it’s less crowded?


Update on Salt & Straw at City Center Bishop Ranch

Yesterday, when I saw Salt & Straw, one of my favorite ice cream spots, listed on the City Center Bishop Ranch website directory, I started unconsciously drooling thinking about which flavor I was going to get on my cone. But alas, what City Center Bishop Ranch giveth, City Center Bishop Ranch taketh away, and now Salt & Straw no longer appears on their directory.

I’m not sure whether they prematurely added it to the directory, like Broadway Plaza did way back in 2017 when I first spotted Apple listed on their directory (and removed shortly after), or the deal fell through, but I’m hoping they really will be coming! 🍦🍦🍦


Salt & Straw Coming to City Center Bishop Ranch in San Ramon

City Center Bishop Ranch, San Ramon

Of all the wonderful ice cream parlors there in the Bay Area, Portland-based Salt & Straw tops the list for me with its decadent, unique flavors. I’ve enjoyed cones at their Portland and Hayes Valley location in San Francisco and am really excited to learn they’ll be opening their first East Bay location at City Center Bishop Ranch in San Ramon. Check out the current San Francisco menu here and read about their story here. If you’ve never tried a Salt & Straw cone before you definitely should check this place out when they open and if you just can’t wait check out one of their other Bay Area locations here.