That's Life - April 8, 2020

If you have telephoned the office of Capital Printers Ltd. anytime since the mid-1980s, chances are pretty good that you spoke to Barb Widmer.

That’s right, Barb was part of The Capital family for about 35 years. I say “was” because we were forced to lay Barb off last week due to the economic crisis we are dealing with due, in part, to the COVID-19 pandemic. Oh sure, it’s not like the Alberta economy wasn’t in crisis mode before the pandemic but at least we could at limp along.

I had hoped the lay off would be a temporary thing. I had hoped things would improve and we would all be one (not so big), happy family again, but that’s not going to happen. Barb has retired. The good news is Barb is a realist and took it in her stride. “We had a good run,” said Barb, “I have no regrets.” The bad news, for me anyway, is, because of COVID-19, we couldn’t even shake hands.

We want to wish Barb all the best in her retirement and sincerely thank her for her decades of dedicated service. She has seen this industry change as we have. Before joining us Barb worked at the Olds Gazette. You might say she has printer’s ink in her blood.

Now, all I have to do is learn to answer the phone when my wife’s not here, learn to serve the front counter, when my wife’s not here and learn to open the office at 9 am, when my wife’s not here. Oh, I’m still yelling “It’s just me” when I come through the front door. In doing that, Barb knew she didn’t have to leave her desk to see if anyone was at the front counter. I actually did that today and we’re closed to the public due to the pandemic. Force of habit, I guess.

I also know that Barb wouldn’t want me to carry on about her any longer so I will say but one more word, “THANKS!”

Now, I would like to wish all of you a happy Easter. I know, I know, what kind of Easter will this world pandemic allow us to enjoy? Well, we can enjoy our families and put our feet up for a few days. I hear it’s supposed to snow so maybe you can make a family event out of shovelling it. Just keep practicing self isolation (if required) and always practice social distancing. If you don’t need to travel perhaps you shouldn’t.

I would also like to stress the importance of keeping up with the latest announcements concerning COVID-19.

In this world of technology it has become quite clear that “everyone” is not connected. I realize it’s difficult for many of you to accept that, but it is a fact. So, if you have a television or a radio, please tune in to receive daily updates.

As your community newspaper we will do out best to update you as notices come to us from all levels of government.

We’re all in this together so please be part of the solution and not part of the problem.

I urge you to support your local businesses during this crisis and beyond. We are all struggling to get through this and, someday, reopen to the public to serve all of your needs and support the many events and causes that make our communities great places to live and raise our families.

Stay safe. Stay healthy. Stay informed.

That’s Life.