I'm not really sure how to start this one off, but here goes.
I remember growing up and hearing about hard times in the past. The Great Depression, the Cold War, 9/11, the Recession. But never have I really thought of how I would react to one myself, especially now as it's unfolding before my eyes and I'm no longer a careless kid in the public educational system.
I try my best to stay informed as to what's going on, everyday it all sounds the same. Cases are increasing, we are unprepared, the stock market is crashing, where are the test kits? stay at home. But really, what else is there to do than just that? Stay at home.
Most of the restaurants and small businesses that I frequent around the city are closed. Fortunately there are the few staying open to serve as a market or have switched to only doing take out orders. A good handful of these small businesses closed, or modified their practices, even before the ban of gatherings of more than 10 people was instated and I applaud them for making that decision early on.
If there's one thing that I've gathered while living in Richmond during this crisis is that Richmond businesses really do care. It's clear to me that they started to care well before our elected officials did. Precautions were being taken upon first word that the virus would be hitting us sooner than later. Emails started flooding my phone with all of the detailed protocol and measures that these businesses where taking in order to not only keep us safe, but themselves as-well. The transparency and prompt action for all of this change to happen still baffles me, and I find it a shame that the majority of the businesses that took this immediate action are the same one's that are forced to close their doors for the next handful of weeks.
It's the silent majority who are the ones pulling the cart in cases like these. continuing to live life as though nothing has happened. I guess we can blame the youth, That much has still not changed.
In other news I have been doing rather well. I haven't been as productive as I'd like, but I guess i've been taking this happening as some kind of vacation.
Both of my jobs have closed for the time being and they advised me to file for unemployment. So I did, and I've been at home binge listening to records ever since.
Before all of this everything was going rather swimmingly. I was steadily making new designs on a weekly basis, I got a new job, and even had a couple commissions to help fuel my passion. It really felt as though things where coming together. I regained a whole wealth of inspiration which I honestly thought had forever lost years ago. I had a steady routine not only in my work and home life, but also at the studio. I felt very balanced and motivated and I was actually getting things done.
Although the inspiration and ideas are still with me, my motivation began to take a dive as this crisis began to appear on the horizon. My focus began to shift towards being conscious of what was about to happen and what I could do to best prepare. A lot of this "preparation" consisted of gluing myself to my phone screen trying to find more information about what was happening and what I should be doing.
Now that it's hit I guess I can say I feel a bit more relieved. Stay home and wash your hands, we don't know for how long, but that's what we have to do. Sure the money will be tight, but I know that I'm not alone. All the other bartenders and waitresses and waiters and chefs and sou chefs and dishwashers and hostesses and hosts and floor managers and everyone else in the restaurant biz are all in the same situation. It'll get figured out, one way or another. But if one thing is for sure I know that we all appreciate finally having some time off.
Now I don't want to keep ranting about this and turn it into a political thing. But the one thing I will say is that I think this whole situation is a huge wake up call for the American people, and I will leave it at that.
I'm bummed that I won't be able to do any more printing for the foreseeable future. The studio had closed in order to protect everyone involved. I was able to swing by and grab a good amount of prints available for sale, along with enough materials to wrap up a project with a friend. It should be fun to do some printing in the apartment, and document all of it and see how it all turns out. It's fun to make lemonade. But I still really wish I could do some printing of my own during this time.
I'm planning on using the rest of this time isolated from the world to continue honing in my drawing skills, I know i got hours to go before I get to where I'd like to be. Along with Reading and the plenty of books i've let slip away, or the plenty more songs that still need to get recorded. Don't even get me started about the time I'd like to spend cooking with my partner or loving my dog and cat that usually spend there time alone in our apartment.
To end this whole spiel I'd just like to say that I hope everyone is ok. I hope everyone's safe, and i hope no one feel's as though they're completely alone. We're all in this together, there's always a friend around the corner. Stay strong, and let's return from this stronger than we were originally were.
Until things start to get back to normal I'm going to mark everything in my shop, that I have on hand, at 40% off. Free local (RVA) Delivery/Pick-Up (I can't discount shipping unfortunately)
I think at this point it's extremely important to look out for one another and that this is the least I can do. If you're in the area and you'd like something but can't make it work just dm me on my insta, i'm always happy to make someones day the same way that many have done for me in the past.
Stay strong. Wash your hands. Let's get through this thing