Jump to content
Janet

USA, Colorado, Denver area

Recommended Posts

Janet

March 24, 2020

 

As of yesterday, Denver and Denver County are under a stay-at-home order that will be enforced as needed. At first liquor stores and marijuana dispensaries were not classified as essential and it only took a couple of hours to rectify that mistake. ūüėČ

 

Statewide, Governor Polis has issued orders that are near lockdown, but he is counting on self-policing. I think he recognizes the near impossibility of stretching law enforcement far enough to monitor the variety of populations in Colorado. Along the center of the state, I-25 connects several large cities and the largest population densities. All of these larger cities have a number of Covid-19 cases, although Pueblo, near the New Mexico state line, has not yet been heavily impacted. 

 

East of Denver the plains are agricultural and the majority of those eastern counties have yet to have anyone test positive for the virus.

 

West of Denver there are scattered communities in the mountains, and nearly all of them that have ski areas are impacted heavily with Covid-19: the first Colorado case was a man who had spent February in Italy, flew into DIA at the beginning of March and spent a couple of days skiing at two different resorts before coming down with symptoms. So it's no stretch to think that other vacationing skiers also brought in the virus. Earlier this month two Australian skiers who had tested positive felt okay and broke quarantine to go skiing. The self-indulgence of the young knows no bounds. (They left the country before the broken quarantine could be followed up on by the public health department.)

 

As of yesterday, Colorado has tested 6000+ people and had 720 positives. This morning's news indicates that there have now been 9 deaths. 

 

One of the things that Governor Polis did 2 days ago was to create an innovation committee to work on scaling up testing, gathering medical supplies, and creating services to make it easier for people to stay home. He is angry that the federal government has not been more proactive. He said Colorado received enough masks from the federal government supply to almost get through 1 day. In other words, fed support is a joke. Hence, like the California governor, he is working with the new innovation committee to make business partnerships and start manufacturing Colorado's own supply of necessary goods. 

 

I live in Douglas County, just south of Denver. I'm retired, so I generally am in a semi-isolating state most of the time. I've been staying home and out of stores since March 11, except for a brief trip to Starbucks drive-through a few days ago -- which felt like a major adventure! My experiences with online grocery shopping have been positive: it's so nice to have groceries placed on your doorstep that I'll probably continue to order online for major restocking. Amazon has a distribution center here so most everything I need I can get quickly, often same day. (Assuming it's in stock. Fortunately I had just stocked up on toilet paper before it started to disappear from the stores.)

 

My younger daughter Emma and her roommate Haley moved in with me yesterday as their lease expired. This has caused family conflict through concern for my health, but at least I now have people who can shop for me. Emma has been working from home for nearly 3 weeks and her company expects this to continue indefinitely. Haley works for a bank; some branches have been closed down, but hers has safety deposit boxes so they must stay open. However, services are only by appointment and through drive-through. 

 

My older daughter Casey works for DoD at Buckley Air Force base to the east of Denver. Her job is not one that can be done at home. At the beginning of last week, they split non-critical workers into two teams and each team works for a week and then is on paid leave for a week. Casey, however, is pregnant, and DoD decided to classify pregnant women as higher risk, so she is on indefinite paid leave. This is good because Buckley closed both their daycare centers as of Wednesday, so my granddaughter's care was in question. (Her dad works from home but could hardly work and care for a 2-year-old at the same time.) My grandson is due May 1 so Casey now expects she won't return to work until at least July. 

 

I have 10 sorority sisters scattered across the communities south of Denver, the majority 65+. Although a number of them are Faux News fans, most are at least not objecting to the views of the most vocal members who agree with the idea of staying home. I think all of them are mostly self-isolating, but can't bet on it. (One of them had a major hissy fit when her knee replacement surgery was cancelled.) Because of this, I have no intention of attending a meeting with them any time soon, but fortunately no one is insisting on this. I'm working this week to set up a group video call, which will be challenging with women in the group who only recently agreed to get smart phones. 

 

  • LIKE/LOVE 16
  • THANK YOU! 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Evelin
On 3/24/2020 at 5:16 PM, Janet said:

My older daughter Casey works for DoD at Buckley Air Force base to the east of Denver. Her job is not one that can be done at home. At the beginning of last week, they split non-critical workers into two teams and each team works for a week and then is on paid leave for a week.

 

Same with my child's father who also works in the defense sector. We're alternating homeschooling our child and I honestly, coffee and wine/beer should be called Parent's Little Helpers!

 

I sympathize... in the beginning of the lockdown I had to phone-help my 75 year old mother to install Skype for a work meeting. Her English is minimal and Skype isn't as user-friendly now that Estonians sold it. There were many, many occasions of "Send me a picture of the screen" ūüėĄ But we succeeded! Hope you can get in touch with your "sisters".

  • LIKE/LOVE 6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Janet

Does anyone have experience with group calls on FB Messenger and Skype? I've participated in a call with Google Hangouts, but I think getting that set up is beyond the capability of most of my sorority sisters. One of them doesn't do email at all! 

 

Messenger and Skype have apps that ought to be fairly easy to install on everyone's phone. I've used Skype in the past only for person to person contact -- not groups. Looking for easiest to install and participate in. 

 

By the way, yesterday was my ex-husband's 65th birthday. He is director of the pulmonary and critical care unit at a major hospital in Boise. He spent the day caring for covid-19 patients. Idaho didn't issue stay at home orders until yesterday. 

  • LIKE/LOVE 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Bobby
5 minutes ago, Janet said:

Does anyone have experience with group calls on FB Messenger and Skype? I've participated in a call with Google Hangouts, but I think getting that set up is beyond the capability of most of my sorority sisters. One of them doesn't do email at all! 

 

Messenger and Skype have apps that ought to be fairly easy to install on everyone's phone. I've used Skype in the past only for person to person contact -- not groups. Looking for easiest to install and participate in. 

 

By the way, yesterday was my ex-husband's 65th birthday. He is director of the pulmonary and critical care unit at a major hospital in Boise. He spent the day caring for covid-19 patients. Idaho didn't issue stay at home orders until yesterday. 

 

Zoom might be an option.  I believe the organizer simply sends out the invite with the link to join the call and it happens pretty seamlessly.  They don't have to sign up for Zoom or anything.  If it's the first time they've ever used it though, there may need to be a short setup process completed on their computer so testing the link before the event would probably be helpful.

 

FB Messenger is also pretty easy  IF they're already on FB and the number of participants isn't too large.

  • LIKE/LOVE 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Wendy

One problem with Zoom is that you are limited to 40 min on the free version.  We used it for my womens circle on Sunday and we ran out of time of course, but then another invite was sent out to continue.  I've had some bad connectivity issues with it. 

 

I've used Skype and FB a lot but have never initiated a group video chat. 

 

And since all these platforms are being used to an extent they never have before, be prepared for slow downs and glitches!

 

 

  • LIKE/LOVE 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
DianeHB

@Janet I have experience with group calls in Messenger. They have to have an FB account, but otherwise it's fairly simple and works well on a computer, tablet, or phone. You just add everybody to a Messenger group and then make a video call to the whole group.

  • LIKE/LOVE 2
  • THANK YOU! 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Eric

@Janet My family has been using Skype for person-to-person. We did out first family group session on Skype this weekend. We had four 'participants' (my twin sis's family, my older sis's family, myself, and my parents) and it worked pretty smoothly for the most part. I don't know how big a group can get though.

I know my dad has been using zoom for business and other meetings, so that may be a possibility too, though I don't know how that one works.

Edited by Eric
  • LIKE/LOVE 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Janet

An update: FB Messenger video chat worked pretty well but we could not add more than 8 people (despite articles I found that said that up to 50 can join). We've tried it twice, and it worked better with only 4-5 people as far as not losing video connections, freezing, etc. 

 

We tried Skype yesterday. Bit of a learning curve, possibly too much of a learning curve for those that are barely computer literate. Some had to click the link I sent them multiple times before anything at all happened -- possibly due to internet load? Supposedly you don't have to install Skype software if you're invited to a call, but those joining who happened to have a Microsoft account ran into demands to log in that were confusing. And everyone that tried to join via phone was forced to install the app. Then, everyone started in a chat window and had to figure out how to turn on sound and video. Some missed the prompt to allow Skype to use camera and/or microphone. All in all, it's not ideal for our group. 

 

While the video is fun, for purposes of a meeting I think we might go back to FB Messenger and just initiate an audio call. 

 

Re Zoom: As @Janet H mentioned above, it has a 40-minute limit for free calls, and there's no way in hell my chapter can complete a meeting within 40 minutes. (It OUGHT to be possible, but it just isn't going to happen.) I told the ladies about this multiple times, via text message, email updates and even in our first Messenger call. Yesterday someone on Faux News said Zoom was the "best" video chat tool. I was inundated with messages from my chapter about how we ought to use Zoom. After all the work I'd done to find a tool for them, I felt like telling them to try it themselves now that they were such experts. Instead I told them about the 40-minute limit. AGAIN. 

 

My daughter overheard me ranting about the demand to use Zoom. She has a master's degree in cybersecurity and says that Zoom is full of security holes and she wouldn't recommend using it. If you're using it and happy with it, just be alert for what might be happening behind the scenes on your phone or computer. 

 

 

  • LIKE/LOVE 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ingun

For audio calls these can be two options:  https://www.freeconferencecall.com and https://www.freeconference.com/

But I have not read the privacy settings.

 

@Janet I agree with what your daughter has said about zoom and it's security issues. Zoom also has no end-to-end encryption (neither Jitsi). That's why I have uninstalled it and are now looking for another way to use. I'm already aware of the privacy and security issues with messenger, google and facebook.... I'm adding a link with a warning from fbi from today about zoom:  https://www.fbi.gov/contact-us/field-offices/boston/news/press-releases/fbi-warns-of-teleconferencing-and-online-classroom-hijacking-during-covid-19-pandemic

 

Here's a link about encrypted video conferencing:  https://windowsreport.com/encrypted-video-conferencing-tools/

Teams is free and works for more than 2 people:  https://teams.microsoft.com/downloads

Linphone has video chat for pc, but for groups only on mobile.  https://www.linphone.org/

Edited by Ingun
added some links
  • LIKE/LOVE 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

√ó
√ó
  • Create New...