Since all this started, all the talk about Covid-19 and social distancing and essential businesses and who should be open or closed and what safety precautions should be taken at work, I’ve been struggling with what to say. What to tell you.
I’ve been asking myself; am I essential? Should I have a policy? Should I post the policy? If I don’t post a policy, will people not trust me? Maybe I should go look at some of my friend’s sites, see what they’re posting? Maybe I should go over to Etsy and read through the forums and see what people are talking about saying?
Hooo boy, was that a mistake. Let's just skip right over what a dumpster fire the Etsy forums were; suffice to say that it was a lesson in figuring out that the answer was within me the whole time.
So, let me just answer a couple of obvious questions, and if you personally have any other questions, please - email me, ask them in the comments of this post, hit me up on Facebook or Instagram... anything. I'll answer anything you ask and there are no stupid questions.
Am I following CDC guidelines at work? Well; ok. So. There’s a joke going around the ceramics world right now that says “Ceramic Artists: washing our hands every twenty minutes since (insert year you started working with ceramics)”. Hahah! Thank you, I’ll be here all week!
-- I do have masks (cheap ones) and gloves that I use for dyeing yarn (and a friend just sent me a few handmade cloth ones), and I suppose that if I weren't the only person who works here, I would supply them to my co-workers and/or make sure I am using them. But ... and here's the biggest things here ...
-- I work alone. A lot of the CDC guidelines aren’t applicable to me. I work alone so there’s no issue about 6’ between me and a coworker (I’m really trying to not put in something funny here, about my cats being coworkers or supervisors). I already work at home.
-- I already wash my hands about 30 times a day.
-- I already clean what I can with bleach (although to be honest ceramic dust gets - everywhere - .... it's like the glitter of the tactile hobby world).
-- As far as customers go, that's a non-issue because I don't allow shopping at my studio. So one person every 1000 feet? I could have a second person (and ... 1/5 of a third person) in here with me. But that's a moot point because I've never been open to the public.
And that about covers it, I think, for CDC recommendations.
Next... should I even be open now? Am I essential? This is one of those existential questions that makes my mind spiral off. I don’t usually feel essential. I feel like one of those people who is mostly tolerated by the cooler kids but next week they will not remember my name. But check this out – according to the Governor of Florida, I’m essential. Why? Because under the list of essential businesses that can stay open? “gg. Any business that is interacting with customers solely through electronic or telephonic means, and delivering products via mailing, shipping, or delivery services” … Huh. So, I'm essential. And that's not even getting into the fact that I make soap, which everyone really needs right now. But you know what, though? Y'all are essential, to me. I couldn't do what I do if you weren't out there. Your feedback, your support, your pictures and stories and the connection we have... that's essential to me. So thank you for being out there.
And that's all I can really think to tell you.
Shipping may be delayed. I'm trying to stay home as much as possible (there's only one recorded case in my city, but I have asthma so I'm definitely down to self-isolate) which means I'm trying not to go to the post office every day. Right now it's been working out to go to the post office on Mondays and Thursdays. Everything that's 10x8x6 or smaller can fit in my mailbox, so it's only larger packages that may be delayed a day or two. And of course once it leaves my hands, I do give you a tracking number, but depending on how it's being shipped, there may be UPS or USPS delays.
If there's anything here that I haven't touched on but that you have questions about - or if you want me to go into more detail about something - please, don't be afraid to ask. I want to reassure you about HaldeCraft and the things I'm doing to not pass anything on to you, but I also don't know what you want to hear and what might be information overload.
But above all, thank you. Thank you for still buying things. Thank you for reaching out and laughing or crying with me. Thank you for chatting with us on Ravelry and commenting on Instagram and Facebook posts. Connection, community, is so important, and even more-so now when it has to be more virtual than physical.