***I have turned off comments for this post. It doesn’t matter which restaurant. Since this published, I have heard of several others, but not verified. Cars packed all parking lots and along both sides of the highway from Nepenthe to River Inn Saturday. Lots of out of state plates. Whichever businesses that did not have it before, will in the next few weeks. It will spread all up and down the coast as it has along every major artery along the east coast, thru the south and in the west and mid-west. As Sharen Carey says, “Assume it is here and act accordingly.” Now we know it is. Make your own choices for you, but always wear a mask for others.***
Big Sur went over three months without a single case of coronavirus. The quarantines, social distancing and masks had worked, but it couldn’t stay closed forever. The closure was taking its toll on businesses and employees. And so, like the rest of Monterey County, and the State of California, we opened in stages.
After restaurants were opened for indoors dining, a restaurant was informed by an employee that s/he had tested positive for the virus on Thursday. The restaurant immediately implemented all workplace exposure guidelines put out by the Monterey Health Department and notified them. The restaurant also told the employee to stay home until cleared by his/her health care provider.
Friday evening, a notice went out to all employees about the exposure. Testing was implemented on any employee who may have been within six feet of the employee for 15 minutes or more. Every guideline was met and implemented.
I contacted the manager of the restaurant for any further information early this morning, but he did not respond. I also contacted two other Big Sur businesses to see if the restaurant manager had provided any information to them, and neither was aware that COVID-19 had shown up in Big Sur.
I contacted Sharen Carey, Executive Director of the Big Sur Health Center who told me that there are currently two cases of COVID in Big Sur. Of course, due to privacy concerns, no further information is available about either case.
We will probably never know if this case was caught from a visitor outside the area, from a family or friend, or while in town. There are many variables that come into play. As Sharen Carey has been telling us for three months, assume it is here, and act accordingly. Implement social distancing, wear masks, and stay home if sick or high risk.
Sometimes, I have to wonder if I will ever get to visit my favorite Big Sur places again. I miss them, and my friends. I don’t think being a hermit becomes me.
For insight into other rural “gateway” communities facing this pandemic and the need to open to survive, see: https://apple.news/AbuEvWMmXRF6ojpYwSmK8fA\