Patrick Graham is the owner of The Walton Tribune, The Covington News, The Sand Mountain Reporter (Albertville, Alabama), Times-Journal (Fort Payne, Alabama) and Jackson County Sentinel (Scottsboro, Alabama). He is a graduate of the University of Alabama.

Lunch Time

Cocina Fuentes in Monroe was open for in-house dining during lunch Friday, May 15, 2020.

feels like we have started to turn a corner, doesn’t it?

As more and more aspects of our everyday life begin to comeback online, the more we begin to think we are starting to get on the other side of this worldwide pandemic.

I’m not saying we are on the other side of it. I’m saying we are starting to get on the other side of it.

I was looking over front pages of the newspaper with Editor and Publisher David Clemons the other day. The first time the phrase “coronavirus” or “COVID-19” was used on the front of The Walton Tribune was in the Feb. 29-March 1 weekend edition of the paper.

Yeah, it was a leap year this year, but it’s highly doubtful that’s what 2020 will be remembered for at the end of the day.

So the first mention of the worldwide pandemic occurred six weeks ago now, two-and-a-half months. My how our lives have changed during that relatively short time frame, despite the fact that it feels like a lifetime ago now.

With that being said, there does seem to be reason for optimism now, reason for hope.

The reopening of the state in phases has proven to be a good move by Gov. Brian Kemp. It is allowing us to get on with our lives rather than extending the holding pattern that was killing our spirit, sanity and financial security.

That doesn’t mean we don’t still have to be smart and continue to adjust how we handle ourselves and public interaction.

For example, I’m probably never going to stop washing my hands after going out somewhere. I’m probably never going to stop using hand sanitizer just to backup the hand washing, which I very rarely used before. I’m probably not going to stop wiping down doorknobs and offices with Clorox wipes just to be on the safe side.

You know what I am going to stop doing?

Not going to church. As soon as the archdiocese opens the doors back up, I’m going.

Not going out to dinner anymore. I’m ready to take my family as soon as we don’t have to sit 6 feet apart from each other.

Not traveling anymore. I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to hit the beach for a couple of days.

Not watching sports. Let’s go, people. Football season is closer than you might realize.

Not having a life. Yeah, mainly that.

Like I said, it feels like we are just starting to get on the other side of this.

Think how we will feel when we really do get there.