A little bit about a lot of things:

• Kudos to the city of Gustine for its food delivery service, which supports local restaurants and residents by dispatching volunteers - often police officers - to make deliveries of pre-paid food orders. That’s a pretty unique use of municipal resources, but we’re in pretty unique times, aren’t we? The delivery program helps keeps revenue flowing to restaurants, who are no longer allowed to offer dine-in services, and gives residents an opportunity to enjoy a restaurant meal while remaining in the comfort - and more importantly the safety - of their own home.

Larger cities could not begin to replicate that program, given the demands on their resources and what would probably be a mountain of red tape and bureaucracy. But sometimes red tape is meant to be cut and a somewhat famous shoe slogan of “Just Do It” applies.

Great job Gustine, of going above and beyond for your business owners and residents!

• I’m used to flexible schedules, sometimes long hours and no two weeks being quite alike.....all of which go with the territory, and help keep life in the community newspaper field interesting.

I have to say, though, that the lack of structure in my day is one of the things that I’m struggling with in this whole COVID-19/stay at home/social distancing era. I typically plan my days around scheduled events, meetings, sports and more. But in the absence of all of the above, I’m kind of building my own days and weeks as we go.

“Are you home tonight?” was a common question from Kat in more normal times, and most weeks I had at least a couple of evening events.

But in this day and age, I’m home every night because, well, there’s nothing happening which I would normally attend. Nothing is happening on other than the occasional governmental meeting and those which have been held are shifting to tele-conferencing formats. I “attended” last week’s ambulance board meeting from the comfort of our home, after Kat figured out how to set up the GoToMeeting app on the computer. It was fairly non-eventful, so after about 30 minutes I was able to click off the computer and announce that I was “home from the  meeting.”

Don’t get me wrong. I love being able to spend more time at home....simply touching base and spending time together has been good medicine for me in these challenging times, particularly when anxiety begins creeping in.

I do, however, miss the familiar structure that helps shape a week in more typical times.

Sometimes, I have to think a bit to realize what day it is because they have all become very much alike....with the possible exception of Tuesdays, our hectic production day.

This is our “normal” for now, but I’m very much looking forward to the day when I once again have to juggle my schedule to get to as many events and meetings as possible.

• Few places I’d rather be during this crisis.....although a remote mountain cabin, beach house on an otherwise deserted island are alternatives that have sounded appealing at times.

But we can’t run away from the real world we live in, and the West Side is a pretty good place to ride out this storm.

We’re not totally packed on top of each other like sardines (how does somebody get any fresh air or personal space in highly-populated urban areas, anyway?), which is a selling point at any point in time but now more than ever. West Siders have room to take the dog for a walk, just go for a stroll or bike ride (as long as social distancing is maintained), without violating any restrictions, as I understand it.

For Kat and I, just spending time working around the yard or house has been a plus....or sleeping in and making breakfast at 10 or 11 in the morning....staying away from news sites on the computer or the television talking heads is a must. To fill the void, I located some music stations on our television and actually found that very relaxing....who knew that those nine gazillion channels on Comcast would some day actually come in pretty handy? The sound of music softly filling the house was relaxing and distracting.....both of which are pretty good things in today’s world.

Dean Harris the Managing Editor of the West Side Index and Gustine Press-Standard. He can be reached at dharris@mattosnews.com or by calling (209) 243-8104.