Tag Archives: COVID-19

Life Back to “Normal”

Not sure we are all on the same page when we say, “can’t wait till things go back to normal”. Not saying I too have not have the same thought – I have. I am just not sure that my list of “normal” things that I am looking forward to may not quite be the same as your, or vice versa.

For me personally, working “remotely” was “normal” for a long time. So, no longer having to work remotely, would NOT be going back to normal.

– manzoor


Living with COVID-19 Today

May 10th, 2020

I have been meaning to start writing this for a while now. It’s now been about 2 months since we here in Central Texas have been dealing with “Living with COVID-19”. I am taking the announcement of the Cancellation of SXSW 2020 on March 6th as the beginning.

Like many I too follow the trend. I use worldometer as my main source. According to them, we have 38,642 Cases, 1,111 deaths and 23,589 Recoveries. Current active cases are 13,942. Also we have tested 489,294. Given our population of 29.9 million the test rate is about 1.6%.

The State of Texas has lifted some restrictions a week ago and is planning to ease more over the next few weeks. We know how we have been able to manage the spread by locking down. We will now find out how the easing, i.e., lifting of the restrictions, will be affecting.

May 17th, 2020

It just coincidentally happens to be a week since I last posted. I am not planning to post every week or something. But seeing that it’s Sunday, it just might.

Anyway, I read earlier today that there was a significant rise in Coronovirus cases in Texas since the State started to lift some of the restrictions earlier in the week.

According to worldometer, there are now 48,551 Active Cases 1,353 deaths and 27,336 Recoveries.

Someone asked on FB the other day if I was ready to go out to dine and my immediate response was no, not yet. His second part of the question was when I would be ready. I knew right away that I had to idea when I would be ready. But I have been thinking since then and I think if anything I am probably more ready now (and I am still choosing to not go) then I am likely to be when they let even more ppl in. they are already talking about allowing up to 50% of the capacity to be full starting next week. We don’t even know what opening to 25% did – did things go up or down or about the same?

In the meantime, Alamo Drafthouse theaters in Arizona have filed for bankruptcy. I have not read the detail or if / how Alamo Drafthouse in Arizona is separated from Alamo Drafthouse in Texas / Austin. But the news did catch my attention and it has been on my mind.

June 3rd, 2020

According to worldometer, there are now 69,437 Active Cases 1,768 deaths and 45,859 Recoveries in Texas.

– manzoor

Restaurants Closing

– manzoor

COVID-19 Testing

Why are we not testing more aggressively? I understand and recognize that we don’t have enough kits and infrastructure to test. But given all the resource we seem to be willing to spend on the issue over all it seems to me that “testing” is getting the least attention.

– manzoor

Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) COVID-19 Test Pricing – CMS
What Will Coronavirus Testing and Treatment Cost Me? – WSJ
A breakdown of COVID-19 testing and cost – WAFF
The Latest in Coronavirus (COVID-19) Testing Methods and Availability – GoodRX
Total Cost of Her COVID-19 Treatment: $34,927.43 – Time

COVID-19 Concern

There is no reason to think for a moment that COVID-19 is anything to NOT be taken very seriously.

But I do think we need to understand what it is we are being concerned about. You may not agree with my concerns, or the way I prioritize them, but by listing mine I allow myself the time to force myself to think about them and also open myself to your scrutiny. If you disagree with any of my thinking I would like nothing more than to hear your thoughts and reasoning.

This is first a health issue. We all want to stay healthy and avoid being exposed to viruses, infections and diseases. But COVID-19 is unique for the time being because it is something new that we have been exposed to. We do NOT have a known vaccine or a treatment. I am confident we will find a vaccine and / or a treatment in the very near future. Near Future is of course relative. For a lot of people it is already not near enough and for many more it will not be.

We now know for sure that it is a Worldwide Pandemic. While most of the individuals who will be infected will have mild to no symptoms, 1) they will be transmitting to others 2) some will be affected enough to require hospitalization 3) and some will be in critical condition. The main takeaway here is that not all are being affected the same. So it is very difficult to predict how it might affect me if / when I do get exposed.

Though the number of individuals who will be in critical condition is low compared to all who will be affected, the total number of critically affected individuals is very high – compared to the capacity of our health care facility. The ability to quickly increase this capacity is not a very easy one but we are trying.

China so far seems to be the only place where things have stabilized. The situation is getting worse almost all over the world. The number of new individuals affected are rising, the number of life lost is also rising. The number of individuals who are recovering is also rising but not nearly as fast as those newly affected.

We are still not testing nearly as many as we need or want to. Which is making things only worse in being able to see the real trend.

Once we try to see past the health issues we quickly see the affect this is having in our societies. To make things complicated this being a a Worldwide issue, societies across the globe is having their own way of reacting to and dealing with it. This reaction is not uniform. But there are certain commonalities that we can see. We are all scared. Scared because of the things we don’t know, the things we do know and all that we think we don’t know. We are not at our best to deal with something of this gravity when we are all scared.

Businesses and Governments are adapting to their own constituent’s concerns. While there are a few businesses that serve people across the globe, most businesses still are responsible to their primary stake holders – i.e., the stockholders / owners and employees and the governments they operate under. Each government is responding to their own citizens first. All of these are causing inconsistencies. While we may all understand and accept that it is not reasonable to expect consistent response across the board, it is still difficult for us to navigate the inconsistencies. Causing more fear.

– manzoor


Yesterday was the first time I had personally dealt with the affects of COVID-19. Our grocery store, My H-E-B, had updated their hours, which is usually 6am to midnight, to 8am to 8pm. My initial assumption was that change was for the store in our own neighbourhood but not for the other ones – specially ones that are in more heavily populated areas. Turns out the change is for all their stores.

So, I went to our local store earlier this morning. Got there around 7:45 – of course – but was still surprised to see a pretty long line already. My unscientific count – about a hundred people.


To smooth things they tried to get everyone to enter thru 1 of the 3 entrances and they were also trying to let 5 ppl at a time to get in. They seemed to be pretty well stocked. Though they didn’t have the 2.5 Gallon water that I usually get. They toilet paper aisle was a one-way thing. Fortunately I didn’t need to get any.

Though “yesterday was the first time I had dealt with COVID-19”, like everyone else it has been on my mind and like many others I too had been making certain changes. I definitely wash my hands more rigorously and more frequently. I keep a certain amount of “Social Distance” – not necessarily always 6 feet and definitely not with everyone.

I am definitely concerned, dare I say “worried”, about the affect this is having, and will leave, on all of us.

I would like to think that I am hopeful that we will learn from this time and experience, as we should from all our experiences. Things I am learning, or re-learning:

  • We’re in this together
  • Some of us need more of a helping hand than other’s
    • I would think of myself most fortunate IF I can extend my hand to anyone in anyway possible
  • We have been given a chance to rise to a challenge and do what is needed of us to make this a better place for all of us
  • We and we alone have what it takes to do what is right and needed

I do know – this too will pass. And we will find something else to be worried about. I have a feeling the next thing most of us will be worried about will be something that is more of a “First World Problem”.

There are ppl today to whom COVID-19 is not as dire as it is to me.

– manzoor