With the third provincial shutdown nearing an end, many are looking forward to putting the past few months behind them.
“This has been the hardest two months of the whole time,” Kingston resident Alexis Dishaw said. “You get to a point where you really start to bounce off the walls at home. So it’s been tougher than any of the other periods because you just weren’t sure how it was going to work out.”
“The last two months in a stay-at-home environment have has not been ideal, at all. I definitely need people around,” Kingston resident Daniel Green said.
Patios were installed this spring, but have sat empty for weeks. Stores have only been offering click and collect options for essential items. But that’s about to change as the province enters Step 1 of the reopening plan on Friday.
But what are people most looking forward to?
“Going out for dates. My wife and I, we’ve been in the house for too long,” Daniel Paterson said. “We’re looking forward to going out for dinner, going to the bar, seeing our friends again.”
“Outdoor patio, first place,” Dishaw added. “Shopping maybe later, but I’m really looking forward to being able to see my daughter and go out for dinner on a patio. And just be with other people.”
The return the normal will be gradual. Non-essential retailers will be limited to 15 per cent capacity and 25 per cent for essential shopping. Restaurants patios will be able to seat four people together for outdoor dining.
Some are looking even further down the road and have their sights set on the reopening phases yet to come.
“I’m most excited for things going forward to be able to go back to school in person at Queen’s,” Green said. “I will never take for granted being able to walk into a lecture hall again.”
Also part of Step 1 of Ontario’s three-phase reopening plan: private outdoor gatherings of 10 people will be allowed.
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