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COVID-19: Personal Stories

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I had my hair cut the day before the world shut down, in my usual pixie. While I returned to my hairdresser when she re-opened in mid-June, we decided since I had ridden out the worst of the growing-out-the-pixie while I wasn't seen in public, we would go with it and see where we end up, so I have had only minor trims since then.  I'm almost at a chin length bob. 

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51 minutes ago, bilgistic said:

Also, for me, it's not just about the risk I'm taking (while always masked and sanitized), but what have other people been doing. I've discussed this with my doctor and therapist and we all agreed that this isn't addressed enough/at all in the collective discussions of coronavirus. You can't know everything that the hairstylist or family member or friend or whoever you're going to see has done. You don't know if they've truly been cautious. It's like the old adage about safe sex--you're having sex with everyone your partner has had sex with. With coronavirus, you're encountering everyone that the people you interact with have encountered. And one positive person infects three others.

I don't know if this has been shared here yet; it's the COVID-19 Event Risk Assessment Planning Tool developed by the Georgia Institute of Technology. It assesses by U.S. county your risk of encountering a person with COVID in a gathering of 10 or more people. A "gathering" doesn't have to be a party or special event. A gathering is any amount of people in a single place.

Believe me, I do worry. I looked at their website and all the recent pictures show everyone in masks; they don't have any specific info but there is a banner that says "We take your health concerns very seriously, and we follow all CDC guidelines to assure your safety." (For whatever that's worth, given all the conflicting CDC info.) I made my appointment early so hopefully there won't be too many people there. My hair is not complicated so I know it won't take too long (though longer than the 5 minutes or so they consider close contact, obviously). My stylist is also not super-chatty with me (maybe just because I'm not a very chatty person myself) so once we decide how much to chop off there shouldn't be too much talking. (I think I'm just going to ask her to recommend how much based on how damaged it is. As long as I can still pull it back, I don't really care at this point. And when it's on the shorter side it gets curlier so I can play with that for a while.) I know my dad and brother have had haircuts since things opened up a bit. I kind of want to do it now, in case they are right about the fall/winter getting bad again.

Unfortunately I then have to log into work when I get home. I was supposed to be off the next three days but my boss asked me to trade tomorrow for a day next week instead. Next Thursday is my birthday and I'm scheduled to work from home, but I decided to take Friday for the three-day weekend. Since I'm doing him a favor he said I can do whatever I want.

That's an interesting tool. My county is 61%; not great. Better then the one below (73%), which in the Path to Zero map went orange in the last week or two, but not as good as the one above, where I work (46%)). The last several weeks NJ was all yellow; then a couple weeks ago(? maybe last week(?)) one county (down south) went orange, then when I looked the other day another was orange (the one below me); and one was green (way up north) but is now yellow again. I try not to look too often because it's a little discouraging.

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19 minutes ago, ams1001 said:

That's an interesting tool. My county is 61%; not great. Better then the one below (73%), which in the Path to Zero map went orange in the last week or two, but not as good as the one above, where I work (46%)). The last several weeks NJ was all yellow; then a couple weeks ago(? maybe last week(?)) one county (down south) went orange, then when I looked the other day another was orange (the one below me); and one was green (way up north) but is now yellow again. I try not to look too often because it's a little discouraging.

I’m mixed on looking at the COVID data presented like they are on these sites.  My county says a 50% chance yet statewide the county has been constantly in the lower half when reporting total numbers by county for the entire state.  At this point months in I wish they would report total cases month by month to show the improvement or spread by county.  The NJ county I lived in growing up was hit harder by COVID than the one I presently live in yet apparently these days the chance of getting COVID there according to this map is about 16% lower while to my knowledge neither one has been “green” at any time.  I guess it’s how the numbers are interpreted and/or used.  
Otherwise I’ve been washing my hands, social distancing, etc and I’ve avoided COVID.  I do need a haircut and I’m hesitating because, you know, the risk of what may happen. 

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4 minutes ago, Cobb Salad said:

The NJ county I lived in growing up was hit harder by COVID than the one I presently live in yet apparently these days the chance of getting COVID there according to this map is about 16% lower while to my knowledge neither one has been “green” at any time.  I guess it’s how the numbers are interpreted and/or used.

Hunterdon and I think either Essex or Union were green a while ago, for a little bit. Sussex was the one that was just green the other day. 

We got hit somewhat hard, I guess. Not as bad as some. (We are firmly in the NYC commuter region but not right next door to the city.) I know there was a family in the news that had at least five people in the hospital in my town, back around April, IIRC (and they were connected to a family-reunion-related outbreak somewhere up north). We still get periodic emails from my condo complex about collecting donations for the hospital (masks, snacks, etc., or you can donate money through GoFundMe).

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54 minutes ago, ams1001 said:

.

That's an interesting tool. My county is 61%; not great. Better then the one below (73%), which in the Path to Zero map went orange in the last week or two, but not as good as the one above, where I work (46%)). The last several weeks NJ was all yellow; then a couple weeks ago(? maybe last week(?)) one county (down south) went orange, then when I looked the other day another was orange (the one below me); and one was green (way up north) but is now yellow again. I try not to look too often because it's a little discouraging.

I've never seen this map before, my mom's county in NJ is one of those orange counties.  The county in NY that I grew up in is also orange.  The whole thing scares the shit out of me.  Only positive is I get to wfh at least til the end of the year if not longer.

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25 minutes ago, Cobb Salad said:

I’m mixed on looking at the COVID data presented like they are on these sites.

Same. The one from the Georgia Institute of Technology in particular... a lot of people reference it as measuring your risk of encountering the virus, but it's really measuring the likelihood that anyone in the entire crowd has it, which isn't the same thing. From their site: 

Quote

The risk level is the estimated chance (0-100%) that at least 1 COVID-19 positive individual will be present at an event in a county, given the size of the event.

Theoretically, an event anywhere with a million people would be 100%, but you personally cannot be near a million people. That's an extreme example, but it shows how the data can be misleading, IMO. I recently attended a child's birthday party with about 30 people, but only got near other people from my bubble. (My family runs a small essential business; quarantining from each other is not possible.)

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17 hours ago, ParadoxLost said:

I haven't gotten a haircut yet.  I've still been doing it myself. Maybe I should go do that.

 

I haven't had mine cut since January.  I was due to get it cut in March right when covid struck and I'm too scared to trim it myself since I want it layered.  I'm also too scared to go to a salon.  I don't think it's grown too much.  Problem for me is having to color it myself.

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My hair stylist opened her own business. The chain salon she was with declared bankruptcy earlier this year. She's renting space in a building that has a variety of businesses, each in their own enclosed space. I got my hair cut early June, and called this week for another cut. I was so happy she was full up this week, and I couldn't get an appointment until Monday. I want her to stay in business! When I went in June, I sent her a text I was there. She came to the front door to let me in. I didn't encounter anyone else on the way to her room. She keeps everything clean and we both wore masks. 

Edited by chessiegal
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2 hours ago, Harvey said:

 

8 hours ago, shapeshifter said:

With such a severe case, I hope you are at least having a telemedicine appointment with your primary care doctor, and I hope your doctor provides you with good care. 🤞

I went to see my doctor, but since I have no breathing difficulties, he said to just try to ride it out at home, and take painkillers when it becomes too much. I only took 1 so far though, don't really want to depend on them. I've been drinking lots of liquids, taking a warm bath every day, and trying to sleep as much as possible

It sounds like you have had good medical advice and are sensibly taking good care. The good thing about having seen your doctor is that they can more easily prescribe other treatment should your symptoms require it.
But let’s hope that’s not necessary.  🥰

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1 hour ago, Jane Tuesday said:

Same. The one from the Georgia Institute of Technology in particular... a lot of people reference it as measuring your risk of encountering the virus, but it's really measuring the likelihood that anyone in the entire crowd has it, which isn't the same thing. From their site: 

Theoretically, an event anywhere with a million people would be 100%, but you personally cannot be near a million people. That's an extreme example, but it shows how the data can be misleading, IMO. I recently attended a child's birthday party with about 30 people, but only got near other people from my bubble. (My family runs a small essential business; quarantining from each other is not possible.)

The numbers vacillate in my county, as it was as high as 85% certainty of a COVID-positive person in a 100-person gathering three weeks ago. That's a trip to the grocery store. It's about 50% now, so I know the data is being updated. It's true that you may not be around all 100 (or however many people), but that one positive person could at any time cross your path or you cross theirs and they may not be precautious. Your risk of contracting the virus, therefore, could be as high as 100%.

Edited by bilgistic
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35 minutes ago, bilgistic said:

one positive person could at any time cross your path or you cross theirs and they may not be precautious. Your risk of contracting the virus, therefore, could be as high as 100%.

Isn't that true everywhere, though?  Since lots of people apparently have it and don't have symptoms?  I make the assumption when I go out that anyone I encounter could have it, and act - or don't act - accordingly. 🤷‍♀️

@Harvey - best wishes to you!  If you live alone, I'd think about setting up scheduled calls with a person or two throughout the day.  I've heard that people can get quite disorientated, so it's a good idea to have someone else monitoring your symptoms.  (Really, that's probably true of all sicknesses that cause high fevers.)

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@ams1001 when I got my cut done I skipped the wash and blow dry (she did spray my hair with water). My stylist was wearing a mask and a visor and they required masks be worn properly by clients. They're also limiting capacity 

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5 minutes ago, Jane Tuesday said:


@Harvey - best wishes to you!  If you live alone, I'd think about setting up scheduled calls with a person or two throughout the day.  I've heard that people can get quite disorientated, so it's a good idea to have someone else monitoring your symptoms.  (Really, that's probably true of all sicknesses that cause high fevers.)

This sounds like excellent, sensible advice. 
And it makes me seriously consider packing up and moving near a daughter now rather than later (I have a month-to-month lease). 
It’s not just for my benefit should the cancer come back or I get COVID again and it’s worse (although current data seems to indicate neither is likely) but it would be so my kids don’t feel like they have to fly across the country if I need help —although one still would if she wanted to see me. 
I feel stuck between worry and inertia. But I guess that’s typical in 2020. 

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33 minutes ago, Jane Tuesday said:

Isn't that true everywhere, though?  Since lots of people apparently have it and don't have symptoms?  I make the assumption when I go out that anyone I encounter could have it, and act - or don't act - accordingly. 🤷‍♀️

It is, which is why people need to be staying home/limiting interactions with others.

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30 minutes ago, theredhead77 said:

@ams1001 when I got my cut done I skipped the wash and blow dry (she did spray my hair with water). My stylist was wearing a mask and a visor and they required masks be worn properly by clients. They're also limiting capacity 

I never get it washed, anyway (it's not included and I don't want to pay the extra). She just sprays it.

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5 hours ago, bilgistic said:

My hair does grow very, very fast and always has. Supposedly, the average hair growth is 1/100 of an inch a day, so that would be ~3.5" in a year. I'm at four times that growth with six inches since the end of February. I know there are worse problems to have, as my bald boyfriend reminds me.

Do you want to hear the ultimate "oh, just shut up" hair problem?

I looked at my head a couple weekends ago and decided I had to google "does gray hair go away"?

Apparently those gray hairs that started popping up when lockdown started were stress related.  And the paternal genetics that keep age related gray hair away are still intact.

Then I googled about whether fright can cause a lock of gray hair over night in every TV or movie made ever.  And that is BS.

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8 hours ago, RealHousewife said:

Anyone else comforted by businesses being open later now? It gives me hope of getting back to normalcy someday.

I haven’t been out late to notice however when I go out for my walks before dinner it seems like the traffic on one of the roads I walk alongside is like it was before all this started.  A few of my neighbors are going out to work in the morning although there are still more cars than normal in the lot here during the day.  So sort of back to normal.  

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Got about 3 inches chopped off my hair. 🙂 My stylist moved to a different chair for social distancing purposes. Normally she's in the row that runs the whole length of the space, along the right-hand wall, but today she was on the other side where there are partitions separating different areas (two pods of four chairs each, then the sinks at the back). So we were at one of the inside chairs as far away from people walking by as possible. There weren't too many people there, though. 

She said they were closed for about 3 months, but they voted to close about a week before the state shut everything down, so they were able to apply for unemployment just before the mad rush. They also raised their prices (but still cheaper than a lot of places would be; my new price was what I spent last time including tip). But then I gave her a 33% tip (which was just my change which I told the receptionist to just give to her). Who wants to bet those prices don't go back down when things are back to normal someday...?

Very strange to have to sign a waiver for a haircut. But I got to keep the pen... (there's a sign on the cup that says "please keep the pen you sign with.")

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17 hours ago, theredhead77 said:

when I got my cut done I skipped the wash and blow dry (she did spray my hair with water).

Until I read this post, I hadn't considered what a terrible idea it is to have my hair blow dried in a public, indoor setting, but my hair is wavy enough that if the stylist doesn't blow dry it, I might just as well cut it myself.
 

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5 minutes ago, shapeshifter said:

Until I read this post, I hadn't considered what a terrible idea it is to have my hair blow dried in a public, indoor setting, but my hair is wavy enough that if the stylist doesn't blow dry it, I might just as well cut it myself.

She did dry my hair (she always goes back over it to catch any uneven spots that are easier to see when it's dry).

For what it's worth, I googled the question of blow drying. Here's one result:

Quote

 

“A blow dryer does have the potential to spread contaminated air around a room,” said Ben-Aderet. “But again, there needs to be an infected person around. Unless someone coughs into a hair dryer and that spreads the droplets, it’s very unlikely.”

As for the blow dryer itself, Ben-Aderet says it’s “unlikely for a hair dryer to be contaminated with coronavirus.”

 

https://www.cedars-sinai.org/newsroom/prevention-do-blow-dryers-actually-spread-coronavirus-heres-what-experts-say-about-salon-safety

So given that they'd only been open half an hour when I got there, and the small number of people in the salon at the time, all wearing masks, I'm not super worried about it. I'd be more worried about washing since they have to lean over your face to do that. (I braided it after I got out of the shower so it was still pretty damp when I got there and she sprayed the rest with water, which is what normally happens anyway.)

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20 hours ago, chessiegal said:

My hair stylist opened her own business. The chain salon she was with declared bankruptcy earlier this year. She's renting space in a building that has a variety of businesses, each in their own enclosed space. I got my hair cut early June, and called this week for another cut. I was so happy she was full up this week, and I couldn't get an appointment until Monday. I want her to stay in business! When I went in June, I sent her a text I was there. She came to the front door to let me in. I didn't encounter anyone else on the way to her room. She keeps everything clean and we both wore masks. 

I called my stylist to talk about my concerns first.  she has her own salon, in a building with other salons and similar businesses.   I requested the first appointment on a sunday, when most of the other businesses were not open yet.   She said she only takes one person at a time  (as opposed to doing a quick haircut on one customer while another is  waiting for the dye to take).  I got a cut, color, highlights, we both wore masks and I felt very safe.  I did not encounter another person the whole time I was there.   

I know she is more expensive, but it was definitely worth it for my peace of mind. 

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1 hour ago, tinkerbell said:

I called my stylist to talk about my concerns first.  she has her own salon, in a building with other salons and similar businesses.   I requested the first appointment on a sunday, when most of the other businesses were not open yet.   She said she only takes one person at a time  (as opposed to doing a quick haircut on one customer while another is  waiting for the dye to take).  I got a cut, color, highlights, we both wore masks and I felt very safe.  I did not encounter another person the whole time I was there.   

I know she is more expensive, but it was definitely worth it for my peace of mind. 

Our stylist came to our house on Sunday. We were all masked up and did the distancing. She's expensive too but sooo worth it. I could have killed my DH though. I didn't make her her usual cup of tea before she got here and hubby asked why. I told him I didn't want this to turn into a social visit but when she was done, he just wouldn't stop talking. I finally had to interrupt and say "Madame X needs to leave now, I'm sure she's looking forward to getting home." Ugh.

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4 hours ago, shapeshifter said:

Until I read this post, I hadn't considered what a terrible idea it is to have my hair blow dried in a public, indoor setting, but my hair is wavy enough that if the stylist doesn't blow dry it, I might just as well cut it myself.
 

I didn't mean to cause concern. I didn't skip the blow dry out of concerns about it spreading COVID, it was more about getting in and out and that I had no where to be to show off how awesome my hair looks after she gets her hands on it. So sorry if I caused unnecessary stress.

4 hours ago, ams1001 said:

She did dry my hair (she always goes back over it to catch any uneven spots that are easier to see when it's dry).

For what it's worth, I googled the question of blow drying. Here's one result:

https://www.cedars-sinai.org/newsroom/prevention-do-blow-dryers-actually-spread-coronavirus-heres-what-experts-say-about-salon-safety

Thank you! 

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California is opening up more.  I have a hair cut scheduled for Saturday.  The shop is small so they can only allow one customer in at a time.  My appointment is 8:00 PM.  😳 😷   People beat me to earlier appointments.  I think we were all on line at the same time trying to get in.  I have to stop myself from saying chop it all off.  While I like long hair, it's really scraggly and thin looking now.  I think I'll be saying goodbye to 5 inches or so.  In the last few years, it has thinned and the texture has changed, but it grows really fast.  

I also have a massage scheduled for next week.  Just for fun, I tripped and dislocated my fibula.  Once it goes out, it keeps trying to get back there.  When this happens once you get the side eye at the doctor.  When it happens three times in four days you get a psych assessment and a social worker.  The first is to see if you are harming yourself.  The second to see if someone is harming you.  I appreciate the reason they do this, but I have a connective tissue disorder so if they check my records they would know that it is not surprising, just really fucking annoying and painful.

This caused me to walk funny and have to sleep differently to not put pressure on it.  So I partially dislocated my collarbone and tweaked my neck and shoulder.  Basically, I'm a wreck.  So I am going in for some gentle self care with a million warnings of what they have to watch.  I actually told people at work yesterday (remote) that I was cranky so I would be avoiding them and would not be turning on my camera.  They didn't need to see the ice packs and braces. 😞 

 

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1 hour ago, PrincessPurrsALot said:

I have to stop myself from saying chop it all off. 

If it's your normal stylist they probably wouldn't chop it all off or do something too drastic even if you said to.

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3 hours ago, PrincessPurrsALot said:

 I think I'll be saying goodbye to 5 inches or so.

I didn't cut off as much as I expected. I told her to assess the damage and tell me how much she would cut off, and she said about an inch and a half. I went another inch or two but it's still a few inches past my shoulders (I'm willing to go as short as just above the shoulders; I have to be able to pull it back).

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1 hour ago, TattleTeeny said:

Just saw a video of Dr. Fauci doing a Zoom with our (NJ's) governor. It actually made me feel a little better.

That reminds me. 
I should catch up on some of my governor’s (IL) recent COVID videos. 
Therapists should probably recommend listening to him for patients who are anxious or have trouble sleeping. 

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I saw his name in an old journal article the other day while formatting a reference block for work. Even that made me feel better, haha!

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3 hours ago, TattleTeeny said:

Just saw a video of Dr. Fauci doing a Zoom with our (NJ's) governor. It actually made me feel a little better.

Thanks for mentioning that; watching now.

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I have such a crush on Dr. Fauci.  Yeah yeah he’s too old for me but I find him so handsome - plus I’m a sucker for a Brooklyn accent ☺️

I got my flu shot today!  Weird - as the nurse swabbed my arm with alcohol it came to me that she’s the first person to touch me since March.

😮😮😮😮

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6 hours ago, Harvey said:

My COVID recovery is going nicely. The biggest relief is that the body aches are gone, as they were the most difficult to put up with. The coughing and dizziness are greatly reduced too. I'm not 100% yet, but at least I can get around the house without each step being a challenge. I'm going to take it easy for another week, and I hope I'll be back to normal after that.

Glad to hear that!

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9 hours ago, Harvey said:

My COVID recovery is going nicely. The biggest relief is that the body aches are gone, as they were the most difficult to put up with. The coughing and dizziness are greatly reduced too. I'm not 100% yet, but at least I can get around the house without each step being a challenge. I'm going to take it easy for another week, and I hope I'll be back to normal after that.

That is great news! I'm just sorry you had to go through it at all.❤️

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NC DHHS now has a COVID tracker. I installed it on my phone last night. I just went to the grocery store (actually two stores, since I have to shop the sales) and I was panicked that I was going to hear my phone alert me that someone with COVID was near me. I don't actually think it works that way, but if I heard a ping, I was going to cut and run to the nearest urgent care. My anxiety is already so bad just going grocery shopping; installing the app probably wasn't a great idea for my anxiety, but I want to help quell the spread (or, I guess track it at the least).

A woman with an overflowing cart inexplicably had brought her husband and adult son with her to the store. As they slooowwwly shuffled past me and I stopped to wait for them, one of their phones dinged and I nearly hit the ceiling. I thought it was mine telling me they had COVID.

Edited by bilgistic
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@bilgistic You may want to turn off the sound on your phone when at the store so you don't jump out of your skin.  Might be better to know from a distance.  People's phones ping so much.  

I got my hair cut yesterday.  I was the only client in the salon.  The stylist was new to me, but really a lovely person.  I'm not so sure about the cut because I blow dried my hair in the morning so she didn't see the natural waves.  I'll wash it tomorrow morning, let it go wild and see what happens.  It felt good to get it done.  

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18 hours ago, ams1001 said:

Glad to hear that!

 

14 hours ago, peacheslatour said:

That is great news! I'm just sorry you had to go through it at all.❤️

Thank you ❤️

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I always do my grocery shopping early in the morning, and don't have to deal with crowds.  But I've been out of shelf-stable whipping cream for a while, and Trader Joe's is the only place that carries it and there's not one anywhere near me, so I had to go when the opportunity struck.

There was a line of about 15 people waiting to get in!  I had no idea that any stores had lines any more.  Admittedly, their stores are small, and this was right at 5:00, and it was in Boulder, Colorado (a Trader Joe's-friendly locale if there ever was one).  But still.

I drove back by an hour later and the line was even longer. 

The problem was that the movie I was seeing wasn't going to be out until after they close.  But I must be living right--my movie got out early because it was Chinese and they didn't have any previews to show, so it started only seven minutes after the advertised time instead of the usual 20 minutes, so I was able to slip in the doors at TJ right before they closed them.  Didn't even consider delaying in order to get $2.99 wine, so in and out in a couple of minutes, and I bought four instead of my usual two, so I shouldn't have to do this again for a while.

Also in Boulder, all 18-22-year-olds are prohibited from gathering in groups of more than two--the city basically grounded them.  And I did notice a dearth of young people out and about, so it's apparently working. 

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20 minutes ago, StatisticalOutlier said:

Trader Joe's is the only place that carries it and there's not one anywhere near me, so I had to go when the opportunity struck.

Now you're just bragging. As a Canadian, one of the things I miss most is my quarterly trips to TJs.  All of the TJ-related Instagram accounts I follow are posting the pumpkin hauls, and it makes me sad.  A friend and I discussed that, once we can travel across the border again, we will do an epic road trip with a U-Haul and stock up.  

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41 minutes ago, StatisticalOutlier said:

I always do my grocery shopping early in the morning, and don't have to deal with crowds.  But I've been out of shelf-stable whipping cream for a while, and Trader Joe's is the only place that carries it and there's not one anywhere near me, so I had to go when the opportunity struck.

My dad mentioned a few months ago that TJ was coming to my town (in a space that was a Walgreen's and has been empty for a few years). I drove past the shopping center yesterday and noticed they had been added to the sign by the highway, but I couldn't see the building to tell if they looked like they were open yet or not. Just googled and they open this Friday. Probably will wait a few weeks to check it out (the only other TJ I know is about half an hour in a direction I don't go very often, so I've only been there once).

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2 hours ago, StatisticalOutlier said:

I always do my grocery shopping early in the morning, and don't have to deal with crowds.  But I've been out of shelf-stable whipping cream for a while, and Trader Joe's is the only place that carries it and there's not one anywhere near me, so I had to go when the opportunity struck.

Well, my takeaway from all that is, there's shelf-stable whipping cream?!?  Where have you been all my life?  I won't make a special trip to TJ's, but it's good to know that product exists.  But it seems like 8 ounces is a lot to use up at once.  Can you whip some and freeze the rest?  Or do you want to share what you do with 8 ounces worth of whipped cream?

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1 hour ago, Quof said:

Now you're just bragging. As a Canadian, one of the things I miss most is my quarterly trips to TJs. 

I'm suffering, too.  I can't get my favorite chocolate in the world, which is the cheap stuff at Walmart in Canada.  They don't ship to the U.S.  My last batch came in January, right before COVID hit, from someone I don't even know, who went to visit her mother in Vancouver and agreed to bring a supply back to Seattle and give it to my brother, who was there for medical treatments, and he mailed it to me.

I now refer to Justine as my mule.  Bless her.

 

1 hour ago, ams1001 said:

Probably will wait a few weeks to check it out (the only other TJ I know is about half an hour in a direction I don't go very often, so I've only been there once).

I wouldn't want to go within a 1-mile radius of a newly opened Trader Joe's, never mind actually into the store. I would fear it will be a scene like when In-N-Out opens a new location.

 

3 minutes ago, SoMuchTV said:

Well, my takeaway from all that is, there's shelf-stable whipping cream?!?  Where have you been all my life?  I won't make a special trip to TJ's, but it's good to know that product exists.  But it seems like 8 ounces is a lot to use up at once.  Can you whip some and freeze the rest?  Or do you want to share what you do with 8 ounces worth of whipped cream?

Good luck finding it in the store.  They constantly move it around, so I've learned just to ask when I get there.  This last time, it was on the bottom shelf of an end-aisle at the back, and the gal said she'd walk me over there and we didn't even have to go all the way back there because we passed by some that was among all the crap they have on top of the open freezers.

It comes in the little aseptic boxes, so it's UHT and some people object to the taste that UHT milk has.  I'm a super-taster, and that's one flavor I can't detect, whether in the whipping cream or in milk, so it's fine with me.  Also, it's not heavy whipping cream, but it's good enough for the cherry creme pie I make, which uses only 1/4 cup of whipped cream, so I "use" the rest with nothing more than a spoon over the next couple of days.  That sounds terrible, but I think it's preferable to the alternative, which is making fruit salad, because that amount of whipped cream will make a mountain of fruit salad that I will motor through with a quickness, so it's probably better just to mainline the stuff than to add fruit and marshmallows to it.

That's another reason I like it--not only can I keep it on hand, it's 8 ounces instead of 16, which is what's in the dairy section of my grocery store, and that's way more than even I can eat by the spoonful.

It's also cheap--$1.39.  On an early pandemic run to TJ, it was sold out, but I don't know if that was a measure of its popularity or just people buying whatever they could get their hands on.  Regardless, I don't want to be down to zero boxes of it again.

Oh, and you can use it past the best-by date.  This is gonna sound gross, but it gets kind of thick and clumpy (I have to cut the box open and scrape it off the sides), but when whipped, those clumps go away, and it actually whips up more like heavy whipping cream.  So it might actually be preferable.  And the taste has been unaffected even several months past the best-by date.

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3 hours ago, StatisticalOutlier said:

There was a line of about 15 people waiting to get in!  I had no idea that any stores had lines any more. 

There is always a line at any Trader Joe's I drive by (I don't shop there) -- with the small size of the stores, they quickly reach pandemic capacity.

I had to go to Whole Foods last month (for one thing, but that was the only place that had it in stock), and encountering a line there surprised me given its size.

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2 hours ago, SoMuchTV said:

Well, my takeaway from all that is, there's shelf-stable whipping cream?!?  Where have you been all my life?  I won't make a special trip to TJ's, but it's good to know that product exists.  But it seems like 8 ounces is a lot to use up at once.  Can you whip some and freeze the rest?  Or do you want to share what you do with 8 ounces worth of whipped cream?

I thought it'd be convenient and it is but I didn't really like it.  Even cold, I found it hard to whip up compared to the real stuff. 

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11 minutes ago, Irlandesa said:

I thought it'd be convenient and it is but I didn't really like it.  Even cold, I found it hard to whip up compared to the real stuff. 

Since it's not heavy whipping cream, I give it every chance by keeping it in the refrigerator, and putting the beaters in the freezer and the glass bowl in the refrigerator (no room in the freezer) before whipping.  I doubt they'd serve it over raspberries at a fine restaurant, but it's close enough for my meager purposes.  Heavy whipping cream is definitely better, but convenience carries the day for me. 

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4 minutes ago, StatisticalOutlier said:

Heavy whipping cream is definitely better, but convenience carries the day for me. 

I've started adding heavy whipping cream to my eggs on weekends so I usually have some around.

I do miss going to Trader Joe's, though. I almost went yesterday.  It has been eons since I've been in a grocery store and I miss some of the TJ's exclusive items.

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2 hours ago, Irlandesa said:

I've started adding heavy whipping cream to my eggs on weekends so I usually have some around.

Hmmm...I usually use milk in mine (had some for lunch today, actually, since I was working from home). A while back I was watching scrambled egg videos and one of them used creme fraiche (was by Gordon Ramsey, IIRC). Haven't tried that one, yet. One of these days I will experiment.

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Since moving to MT 16 years ago I really miss Trader Joe's. I've ordered things from Amazon but several times the bottles/jars are open/broken very disappointing.

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