What Phase One of Reopened Texas Looked Like To Me
Last Friday, Phase One of Governor Greg Abbott’s plan to reopen business went into effect. Under the guidelines laid out by the governor, restaurants, malls and most retail stores could reopen as long as employees wore masks, customers observed the 6 foot rule and the business only operated at 25% of their capacity.
I only went 2 places over the weekend: a restaurant on Saturday and PetSmart on Sunday. But, I made it a point to keep my eyes open and note which businesses were opened and which remained closed (or take-out only). Here’s what I saw:
Some were open, including Kona Grill where I went Saturday. Once you got inside you wouldn’t know there was a pandemic (except for all the employees wearing masks). The tables were 6 feet apart and there seemed to be people at every table where we sat out on the patio. I wore a mask into the restaurant but took it off as soon as I saw that no other customers were wearing their.
Many other restaurants still looked to be closed for dine-in. If I were to estimate, I would say a little less than 50% were letting customers sit down and eat.
2.) Retail Stores
I was a tiny bit surprised at the number of retail stores that chose to remain shuttered. Ross, Marshall’s and Burlington Coat Factory had empty parking lots all weekend. Barnes and Noble and the Tuesday Morning on my side of the city were open but they closed about 4 hours earlier than normal at 5 p.m.
3.) Movie Theaters
The only one I drove past was Flix Brewhouse and they were definitely still shut down.
4.) Golf Courses
I played Saturday morning at Painted Dunes. There were 4 of us and we all had to take a separate cart. They had one-way entrances and exits and you weren’t allowed to remove the flag pins. A good time was had by all but my short game really suffered from not playing for the last 6 weeks.
On a positive note, I’ve noticed something that I hadn’t seen in my neighborhood before: kids outside riding their bicycles! Kids on bikes has been a rarity, at least in my neighborhood. Now, I see it frequently. Good job, kids…keep it up! Maybe one day I’ll show you a little game I invented when I was a kid called “Pavement Jousting”!