Saint John — With widespread cancellations, closures and shutdowns, the world has seemingly been upended by the recent outbreak of COVID-19. Still, Greg Almond, the notoriously chatty UPS man, tells The Manatee he’s “sure it’ll blow over in a couple weeks.”
“In the meantime,” he said, leaning on the entryway door frame, “I think it’s important that we don’t lose our heads, y’know? I’m not going to change the way I live just because of a few germs.”
As an example, he mentioned that just the night before, he and his “buddies” attended an unsanctioned amateur mixed martial arts fight at a local bar.
“And you know what? We acted like sane people. Doing what we normally do…hugging, high-fiving — all that,” he said, absentmindedly rubbing his palm under his nose. “If you ask me, in times of crisis, we cannot lose our sense of community.”
Having said that, he does acknowledge that it’s “probably a problem,” but one that “social media has blown way out of proportion.”
“I took my father out to the Chinese buffet just two nights ago, and I’ll admit that it made me a little nervous that, you know…they were serving us. But, it’s important not to start to think like that,” he explained. “I mean, Dad doesn’t get out of the nursing home very often.”
He also volunteered, without prompting, the news that he expects the travel bans to be lifted “really soon.” In fact, he still expects that he and his girlfriend will be able to make their planned cruise to Italy three weeks from now.
“These things come and go,” he said confidently. “Honestly, this is probably the best time to buy a vacation package. It was dirt cheap. The only real downside is it’s a smoker’s cruise, and my girlfriend’s asthmatic, y’see? Still, though, she thinks she can tough it out for the week.”
He paused for a moment as if to contemplate this, then remembered the task at hand.
“Oh, right,” he said, taking the pen out of his mouth and handing it out. “Sign for this, please.”