May 28, 2023

According to research “the new normal” has come up many times since the financial crisis of 2007 to 2008, the global recession of 2008 to 2012 and now the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Oxford Dictionary defines the new normal as a “previously unfamiliar situation that has become standard, usual and expected.”

We all have to adjust to this new pattern or new lifestyle given the restrictions and quarantine for our mental and health wellness. As we become accustomed to “the new normal”, the new situation and new challenges, we have to shift thru our priorities and face head on unexpected developments.

The new normal populace has become avid inventors, cooks, bakers, Netflix and Facebook users, small-scale entrepreneurs and passionate eaters and consumers. That’s us.

Businesses have to cope with new alternatives, new products, new innovations and new ways of getting their products to their clientele or customers. Gone are traditional marketing.However, as owners and managers, they should try to cope with the new normal and loses in revenue, they should still be compassionate with their employees. Compassion and patience are also part of the new normal.

At first, we saw trickles of men in pink, riding in pink motorcycles.  We worried about checkpoints, going to work and the hospitals and seeing our doctors, getting market day passes, going to ecumenical services, buying our groceries, bread and rice, hair grooming, etc. as we await the unknown  – we still do.

We still do not want to open our borders widely for fear that incoming visitors will spike cases within our city. Maybe we should just open our doors to the community. Bit by bit or as days progressed from enhanced to general to moderate general community quarantine, we started to be confident and saw that there were other ways   of doing or obtaining essential needs.

Establishments are now catering to dine-in but with physical distancing rules. Just like water finding its own course or seeking its own level, innovative ways have surfaced for the essentials, our food and health needs. 

We now find ourselves with other delivery services aside from Food Panda (men in pink) like Errand MOTO, Arangkada Food Express, Family Food to Go, Food Ninja, Mr. and Mrs.  Delivery, Inkaman, etc. Thank you, Lord, we still have the internet and Facebook. 

Postings of private entrepreneurs who deliver food to your doorstep are a blessing to satisfy our cravings for the dimsum goodies of King Chef and the Hog’s head of The Little Café of Orchard, Sizzling Plate’s sansrival, toppings and steaks, Hill Station cheese cakes, steaks and gourmet food, Ongkoleyt candies, goodies and vegetables, Go Rada, @the whiteboxcupcakes, butter pandesal and other bread requirements fromSwiss baker, Happy Tummy Thai food, Mahi Indian Foodand many more.

The famous nutribuns which made a comeback were distributed to frontliners made by Swiss Baker and Sunshine Grocery.

Lately we chanced upon the Sagada lemon pie, Jhen Palansa-Baltazar’s ethnic mask-hat-visor of Everything Baguio and Carl Taawan’s one of a kind leather mask. Just go to the Internet and Google, and find out more about them.

We were also very fortunate to find out about the “home service” of the Cabato Medical Clinic and Northcross Corporation. They are the frontrunner of “innovative health care delivery system that responds to the needs of the community.”

We were able to get our flu shots from Dr. Alex Alcantara (0917-794-1999) at the safety and comfort of our homes. Just book your appointment for home service in advance and inquire about their other medical home services. They are fast and efficient.

Most services are now done by appointment. Since the parlors are slowly opening with limited service, we also book for the home service of our favorite and long -time hairdresser Regie Barlin (0921-481-9318) and manikurista Myrna Abordo (0932-866-6855). Dentist’s and doctors’ clinics are also now open with social distancing rules of “one-at-a- time” patients.

Jhen Palacsa-Baltazar has ethnic mask-visor and hat sets by Everything Baguio and Carl Taawan has leather based masks. A lot of people have found new ways to do masks, visors and personal protective equipment.

Well liked and popular home viewing entertainment are telenovelas of Netflix and Movie 25. Hours can just pass by with a 16-episode Korean telenovela.  If you run out of telenovelas go to Movie 25. They have about 1,500 new and old movies worldwide.

The Baguio Museum, a member of the North Luzon Association of Museum, is now using the Zoom Cloud meetings and chats for brief meetings.

Zoom is the most popular way of conducting meetings and “webinar” for seminars and other presentations on the Internet, participants in different locations can see and hear the presenter or conduct a meeting, ask questions, and sometimes answer polls in real time.

Group meetings are widely used in Facebook group messenger chats.  Gone are the days of Friendster and Skype. The new normal is here to stay until a vaccine or cure is invented.

So now, even if we do go out once a week, our daughter is still very strict. Since we live near town, we walk to town and back, enjoying our exercise.

Thank you, God, that we are able to enjoy the new normal.