Randy Smith: Opening Things Up

Tuesday, May 19, 2020 - by Randy Smith
Randy Smith
Randy Smith
This week marks 11 weeks since we started our self-quarantining and social distancing regimen. While the world around us slowly begins to re-open trying to bring back a sense of normalcy, the death rate from Covid-19 continues to climb. There is dissension around the country based upon political posturing on both sides of the issue and when I see large crowds at an eating and drinking establishment, with people not wearing masks and doing absolutely nothing to social distance themselves, I cringe. 

I am not a "snowflake" who lives in fear. But my mom and dad didn't raise a fool. I will be 69 years old in a little more than a month and, with my history of heart problems and diabetes, I am considered to be a high-risk individual.
My wife and I have done well while staying away from other people, though I do miss seeing my friends. We still get together with our family a couple of times a week, but that's as far as we've gone. We've gone camping a time or two, but we can social distance as well in our motor home as we can in our house.

This weekend, my oldest grandson's baseball team is scheduled to jump back into the fray. They play a couple of scrimmage games in Atlanta and next weekend they play in a tournament in Maryville, Tennessee. There is no doubt as to my attendance this weekend or next for that matter. I will be there. We will practice social distancing and follow the rules that have been set up by tournament and league officials. Not being able to watch my grandkids play ball this spring has been the toughest part of dealing with this Coronavirus and, while I'm excited about the possibilities, I sense that it's not going to be the same as it was before all this stuff started.

While I am not afraid for myself, I do have some concern about my family. However, when I look at the numbers, especially in our area, I feel a bit better about venturing out again in public. There will be masks available, as well as gloves and plenty of hand sanitizer. We plan on bringing our own food because the concession stands will likely not be open and, as far as eating in a restaurant after the game, that's not going to happen. Going to a youth baseball game with a total of 50 or less people in attendance is not like going to a Braves' game with 40,000 other people there. Social distancing should be a lot easier.

Today, May 19, 2020, my wife Shelia and I have been married for 47 years. It's strange not going out to a special place for dinner and celebrating the way we have before. I have complete faith that we as Americans will eventually whip this virus. It will take everyone pulling together and being on the same page to make it happen and right now that doesn't appear to be the case at all. Still, I have faith that we'll get through it together. We have no choice.

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Randy Smith can be reached at rsmithsports@epbfi.com


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