A Whole New World: Returning to Life, Post-Covid-19

Cities, counties and states are starting to re-open. Life is slowly starting to resume again. What’s going on at our local marinas? Parimal M. Rohit and Kevin Davis chat about progress in Long Beach.

LONG BEACH—Memorial Day Weekend 2020 just came and went, which means it’s the unofficial start of summer. Boating season is usually a year-round affair in Southern California, but the final weekend of May is the official marker of a summer on the water. The Covid-19 pandemic has changed things, of course, making this year’s Memorial Day Weekend more symbolic. Marinas and harbors are starting to re-open, as Coronavirus-themed restrictions and forced isolation measures slowly being peeled back by city, county and state officials in mid-May.

The Log’s Parimal M. Rohit and Kevin Davis had a quick conversation about life at Long Beach’s Shoreline Harbor. Davis is a liveaboard at Shoreline. He shares some perspective with Rohit about how things are looking from his point of view.

Parimal M. Rohit: Harbors and marinas appear to be opening back up. What’s the situation at Rainbow and Shoreline? Is there more activity on the docks? Are there more people on the waterfront? Have the parking lots opened up yet.

Kevin Davis: At this time most of the restaurants and bars are still offering takeout only. The ice cream shop has been opened (thumbs up), and the bike rental place opened this past weekend. Is there more activity on the docks? Yes! Much more activity. The nice weather has been helping. People want to get out and socialize. This past weekend a ton more people were on their boats and on the docks. Are there more people on the waterfront? Yes, the walking and bike path are now officially open. You see much more traffic. Have the parking lots opened up yet? Public parking is still closed. Rainbow Harbor parking is open for pick up/takeout.

PMR: What about the local businesses? What have you observed?

KD: Businesses doing the best they can considering the circumstances. Most of the businesses in Rainbow Harbor are destination points. It’s been rough on ‘em.

PMR: Have you noticed any of them going out of business, basically as a result of the pandemic?

KD: Not that I’m aware of … fingers Crossed all of ‘em pull through.

PMR: Have you noticed any differences in the way people are going about their affairs at and around the marina?

KD: Many observe social distancing practices, i.e. wearing masks, standing apart. However, many do not.

PMR: What are the social interactions like on the docks nowadays?

KD: During the week it is pretty quiet. The weekend – well let’s just say, people are ready to get out and socialize. Same as before, but just with social distancing & masks? It’s hit or miss.

PMR: What’s the temperature of the room?

KD: Temperature of the room is heating up. People are ready to get back to their norm.

PMR: Are people worried about re-opening? Too soon? 

KD: I believe most people are eager for businesses to re-open, the businesses themselves especially. What it will be like is anyone’s guess. Was forced isolation too much? For some perhaps. However, we’re a resilient nation. We will overcome.

PMR: Open ended question – What do you think is the new normal at Shoreline, going forward?

KD: That’s a tough question. I anticipate guidelines we will all have to adhere to – i.e. wearing masks, standing apart, number of customers in an establishment, etc. The “new normal,” as it’s called, will hopefully be short lived.

PMR: What does life look like once things are allowed to be business as usual? 

KD: Hopefully much of the same as it was prior to the pandemic.

PMR: Could you share with us how you’ve managed these past few weeks?

KD: We have been able to weather the past few week’s just fine. I’ve been lucky to have a job that allows me to work remotely, it takes up a big part of my M-F life.

PMR: What has it been like being isolated on your boat? Have you experienced cabin fever?

KD: Cabin fever is real. The first couple weeks the weather outside was crummy. So, we were in the cabin a lot. It gets old. You binge watch TV, you have a tendency to eat more and drink more. You find yourself asking the dogs and cat their opinions. We did find ourselves finally getting to a number of boat chores we’d put off. However, now that the weather is nice, we’re outside a lot more, working out, eating better, still drinking as much if not more, watching the sunsets. We took off sailing [during a weekend in mid-May]. The weather was great, and the wind was perfect. Swells could have been little less. The dogs and cat did not have their sea legs.

PMR: What things did you do to maintain a daily routine without being a health threat to the world around you?

KD: I’ve tried to keep as much of a normal routine as possible. However, since we are limited we find alternatives. We adapt and overcome. It’s a lot like sailing.

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