David J. Danto
Business travel thoughts in my own, personal opinion
Diversions And Devolving, Dashed Dreams From Delta
“As I explained a few weeks ago, I was all set to pick up my personal and conference travel at the end of August with a leisure trip to Vegas followed immediately by attendance at an industry conference in Indianapolis – and then three more conferences in the following 60 days – but now there is the COVID19 Delta variant to contend with. What this situation has devolved into is simply a mess. It is a set twists and turns that change daily, and has essentially pushed me into the role of spectator.
My leisure trip is most likely still happening – as Las Vegas has a mask mandate indoors – well, sort of. Everyone has to wear masks indoors – unless they are eating drinking or (ridiculously) smoking. So there is a built-in excuse for people who don’t want to wear masks. In addition to that, Nevada’s Governor has just sent a conflicting requirement clarification that people attending venues that check for vaccination status no longer need to enforce mandates (completely ignoring the science that vaccinated people can still be transmitting the virus.) Soooooo……that means in order to enjoy a trip to Las Vegas I’ll need to be wearing my N95 mask 100% of the time. OK, fine, whatever, I can deal with that. The real issue is now the need to eat meals either in our hotel room, or at outdoor restaurants (in 95-105 degree temperatures.) It certainly takes something away from the planned enjoyment of the trip.
Of course my big problem is where I go after the mini-vacation is over. I’m now holding two airline tickets – one heading for the business conference I intended to be at for months, and one heading home. The daily variability caused by the Delta variant leads me to believe that I won’t know which flight I’m actually taking until I board the plane.
This conference, and the three others I planned to attend in September and October as well, have been subject to many attendee and exhibitor cancellations. Some big firms (and some attendees) simply explained they’re pausing everything ‘till at least January. Others make a big deal about which conference organizers have an “everyone must wear a mask at all times” requirement verses others who have made it only optional. And some have pointed out that the location of the conference – especially those located in the states of denial (Florida and Texas) are inherently unsafe.
While all this has been happening, it was reassuring to see the Consumer Technology Association – owners and operators of the CES show – state that they will only allow exhibitors and attendees at their huge event in January that have been fully vaccinated. (And since I first wrote this blog, the National Association of Broadcasters conference and other conferences have issued similar requirements.) That was excellent news. As I said in my blog last week, the only way we will ever get a handle on this pandemic is to prevent COVIDiots who refuse to do what society requires (get vaccinated) from accessing any parts of society that sane people can. I completely agree that vaccine proof needs to be a requirement for airplanes (as Canada has now done) restaurants, gyms and theaters (as New York City has now done) conferences (as CES, NAB and others have now done) and just about everything else. As a parent of now young adult children, one of the most important lessons we needed to teach them over and over again was that there are consequences to their choices. If someone medically able to be vaccinated chooses not to due to misinformation or misguided stupidity, they need to understand the consequences of that choice will be for society to ban them from participating in things sane, vaccinated people can do. Of course they have the freedom to make that choice, but they then can’t complain about the restrictions their choice forced upon them. They are welcome to stay home under their rocks, but not do much of anything else.
I had hoped that by late August we’d be past the worst of this and we could begin a return to some semblance of pre-pandemic life. Clearly Delta and COVIDiots have dashed and diverted that dream.
Please, please people – get vaccinated ASAP, get a third / booster vaccine as soon as you are able to, and if you’re traveling follow the other safety precautions I detailed in my recent blog. This stunningly isn’t nearly over yet – mostly because stupid people always seem to spoil good things.
This article was written by David Danto and contains solely his own, personal opinions.
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