Even though the new restrictions were just announced, we have been trying to anticipate what could be next with the worsening case numbers. The fact that things have gotten so out of control is both shocking and also not surprising, this was always the outcome we seemed to have been hurdling towards since the beginning. We truly hope these new measures make even some small progress towards helping to stem the spread of COVID-19 but also are aware that the small incremental measures implemented previously have so far proven vastly ineffective. This year has been one of the most trying years of our lives: we have all felt lonely, sad, defeated and broken. The focus is often on the impacts of this virus on small businesses and the economy. As small business owners, we are constantly used as a shield to defend the dithering, and the impacts on us as a collective are often placed above the health and wellness of others, discounting that every single person in this province is simultaneously affected in their own vital ways. We are all struggling, you can feel it everywhere. Its mass hangs over everyday life like a great weight. We have all made sacrifices, taken on debt, lost loved ones, been unable to love or grieve properly, but we have also seen amazing moments of love, ingenuity and resilience from our communities. We have personally felt the love from all the amazing Albertans that choose to grab a burger or take away some beer. Small businesses (truly small businesses) are a pillar of a healthy community, but so are our schools, hospitals and public works. Our communal mental, physical and emotional health requires us all pulling in the same direction, choosing to direct our positive energies and time towards one another, by choosing a service, product or experience from someone in your community over what may be cheaper or quicker, as these dollars have an outsized impact on the community. But we also need to provide the resources for our teachers so our children can thrive, mental health care that is more affordable and accessible and all of the other non-business aspects of our community that need support. If one thing this pandemic has laid bare, it’s that we have some fundamental flaws in our society, and only through consciously remembering that each community is a living, breathing organism that needs care, will we grow and flourish together.
We will be reverting to take-out only starting tomorrow, Wednesday the 25th. We do not want to put our staff through the futile exercise of ensuring people voluntary follow the restrictions on dining. We understand that we have the privilege of making this choice and do not do so lightly as we realize lots of other amazing restaurants must remain open for their survival. We would still love your support and will be here with a beer whenever you need it! But we ask that if you choose to continue dining out, that you follow the public health measures to ensure we can all eventually return to what we love ASAP.
The Whole Rural Routes Team