Last night the White House briefing introduced the new 3-Phase plan to open up America again. The gating and phasing concept was all very familiar from decades of working on IT projects. It seemed very well structured and sensible. The key figures on stage were poised and calm and speaking with unity. This is what I expect. Very nice – a welcome change.
Early today I started receiving texts from friends anticipating an announcement from the Governor this morning, that would open up Texas again – maybe as early as today. Really? Just like that? What happened to May 1st, to us not having peaked yet … to schools out for the rest of the year? Let’s see, maybe it’s just wishful thinking.
In the meantime, we went out for a long bike ride around town. Cycling has been a real pleasure these past few weeks — rather than feeling like you’re risking life and limb mixing in with impatient drivers blind to anything smaller than a truck. As soon as we reached the end of our street, we could tell something had happened. Something was different than even yesterday.
There was more traffic, there was more rushing, there was a greater buzz. As we passed small shopping strips the parking lots were noticeably filled with cars – a week ago they were empty. People were coming and going from businesses. Did we miss the memo? Did our Governor really take the lock off?
I checked the news-feed and found an executive order issued this morning from the Governor that “establishes a temporary “Retail-To-Go” model that will allow retail outlets in Texas to reopen beginning Friday, April 24. Under this model, reopened establishments are required to deliver items to customer’s cars, homes, or other locations to minimize contact.” Isn’t that a week from now, or did I lose a week already? What unleashed all this activity?
It seems to me that Texas is done with this “Stay At Home” order. This is after all the state with one of the most successful public service ad campaigns, ever, built on the logo “Don’t Mess with Texas”. They’ve been messed with long enough. The executive order signaled a leak in the damn. People are busting out. They are moving on.
I’m going to be watching this unfold from my little patch of isolation and hoping that we know what we’re doing!!