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Buice column: Finding new normal during pandemic

During these days of the coronavirus pandemic, everyone is looking for that new normal — whatever that might be.

That includes work, at least for me. I’m glad to have it. Many others don’t.

For one of my primary duties for this paper, covering the Clemmons Village Council has now become like watching the old Brady Bunch show with everyone contained to little squares on the screen.

After skipping one meeting in March to comply with the restrictions that came as a result of the coronavirus, the council entered the world of Zoom and went the virtual route to hold both of its regularly scheduled meetings in April.

For the most part, both went off with few glitches. One meeting started late because Councilwoman Mary Cameron had problems connecting. Also, Public Works Director Mike Gunnell froze up on the screen while talking about paving projects. He soon returned. Councilwoman Michelle Barson got a couple of brief visits from one of her young boys in both meetings.

And I got to sit at home in front of the computer in my T-shirt and shorts — plus avoiding the short drive to village hall to take my usual seat at the press table.

The family dynamics have changed with more time together, which I think has been a good thing. Not sure if that is true for everyone.

I’m most thankful that we’ve all got our health and feel like we’ve tried to be safe during the stay-at-home (as much as possible) order.

My wife and I have taken on some new projects, reached out to old friends, done more reading and explored more options among the 2,000 cable TV channels and on Amazon Prime while keeping our distance from being total news junkies. Too much of that is not good for you.

We miss going to movies and occasional plays and concerts. In fact, we were supposed to be going to the Chicago concert tonight in the new Tanger Center in Greensboro. Of course, it was canceled and rescheduled for later in the year.

We’ve done more cooking at home, and it hasn’t been all bad. That includes tinkering with new recipes, but we still miss eating out at the local restaurants and have continued doing takeout to support them.

As for me personally, the last six weeks have presented some major challenges with my athletic and fitness regime.

First was the loss of racquetball, which I used to play three to four times a week until my gym closed. I decided to ramp up with more tennis to fill the void and also gave disc golf a try for the first time but then got “tennis” elbow as a result of the different motion of throwing one of those discs. How ironic.

So then I decided to play it safe and start walking. I now average two to four miles a day and love it. The racquet sports will return.

Another negative for me has been a world with no sports. No baseball makes me very sad. Will there be games this season?

And what about football in the fall?

There’s so much uncertainty everywhere.

It looks like most of the country is starting to open back up, at least in the early stages of lifting restrictions. North Carolina’s stay-at-home order runs through Friday. Will that be beginning of the end as we transition to layered phases? Should it be the end?

Of course, it depends on where you stand. Everyone wants to open up for business, but no one wants to die.

Where do we find that happy medium of being safe and staying healthy without the country going bankrupt?

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Among the many things to be postponed this spring because of the coronavirus — and the restrictions on mass gatherings — was Clemmons Community Day, which is always a fixture on the calendar in early May.

Too bad, at least from the weather perspective, as last Saturday’s weather was perfect — with sunshine, blue skies, low humidity and temperatures in the mid-70s with a light breeze.

It was certainly a “chamber of commerce” kind of day as the old saying goes. Last year was the 10th anniversary for an event that has grown in popularity over the years.

Clemmons Community Day was started to provide opportunities for persons in the community to share what’s going on with their businesses and also connect the citizens of Clemmons and this region on a Saturday in the spring

Then it really took off a few years later when the Lewisville-Clemmons Chamber of Commerce and the YMCA decided to join forces, all on the Jerry Long Y grounds, with the YMCA Healthy Kids Day exercise and a greater variety of fun activities and more food choices.

There’s no word yet on a new date, but hopefully things will get better so this annual event will find a place on a Saturday sometime in the summer or fall.