My usual beat is writing about transportation. And some of you, faithful readers, often tell me I’m too negative and cynical. That might be true. So how’s this for a change?
We all know these are stressful times. Our lives are on hold as we hunker down at home wondering what tomorrow will bring. While we may be getting cabin fever, let’s remember other people, still on the job, trying to bring some sense of normalcy to the world in this time of chaos.
Yes, the trains and buses may be near empty, but they are still running. People like first responders and health care workers need to get to their jobs. So kudos to the drivers, engineers, conductors and maintenance folks who are keeping things running.
Post Office employees
You can add pandemics to the Post Office motto “Neither sleet, nor rain…” In addition to the usual junk mail, my mail carrier recently delivered an order of prescription medicine and a birthday card. The simple act of walking out to that post box each day makes me feel things are going to be OK.
Shame on the folks who panicked and emptied store shelves last week. They probably won’t be going to the store anytime soon (enjoy your Ramen noodles!) to see that most shelves have been refilled thanks to the army of truckers keeping our food chain connected. On March 18, federal limits on the hours a trucker can be driving were waived to improve deliveries. So hat’s off to those drivers now working even longer hours to keep us supplied.
Those working at Food banks
Our local food bank in town is being inundated with calls from tearful folks worried about their next meal, wage earners laid off and their income slashed. This would be a great time to do some volunteer work donating money or food (even Ramen noodles) or helping restock the shelves. You’re not exactly busy, right?
Our local police officers, firefighters and EMS workers probably wish they could be with their families. Instead, they’re still doing their jobs while trying to stay healthy. Thank you.
Everyone keeping highway services running
One small silver lining to our predicament is that our usually clogged highways are wide open, even at rush hour. You’re supposed to be staying home, but if you must drive, your trip will be quick. Highway service areas are open for gasoline and to-go food. And the tow truck operators will still rescue you if you break down.
Jim Cameron has been a Darien resident for more than 25 years. He is the founder of the Commuter Action Group, sits on the Merritt Parkway Conservancy board and also serves on the Darien RTM and as program director for Darien TV79. The opinions expressed in this column, republished with permission of Hearst CT Media, are only his own. You can reach him at CommuterActionGroup@gmail.com.