But I am very careful. We are seeing the third wave of infections and it will be a hard winter. I do not allow any customers in my home as I once did. I tell customers to stay in their car and call me when they arrive. I tell them I will put on a mask and ask them to do the same and that I meet them in the street. I bring an empty plastic box with a lid, my notepad and a couple business cards. I make every effort not to touch them or their media. I keep my distance 6 feet or so. The worst was when we had a heavy rain storm. I wore rain gear and took a big umbrella. I tried to make the exchange quickly and told the customer I’d go back inside and call them on the phone.

I no longer wear gloves as they introduce more problems than they solve. But I make certain not to touch my face. When I come back with the job, I immediately wash my hands with hand sanitizer every time even if I am only accepting a check. A check is safer than a credit card which must be handed back and forth. Paper also is safer than plastic for transmitting germs.

This business used to be a very personal one where I often sat in the living room with customers and had great conversations. No more. I try to keep conversations on the phone or by email. It’s by appointment only, and I ask them to call me when they arrive so the customers don’t even come on my porch. Sometimes I get someone ringing my door bell. I put on a mask and ask them to step back so I can come out on the porch. Anyone not wearing a mask is asked to wear one before we can do business. I often see 3 to 5 people a day so any risky behavior is multiplied.

I was shocked to learn that a colleague just recently contracted Corona Virus. She is a personal organizer. This is the kind of person who can refer a lot of business to me. So I keep in touch with her. Unlike my transfer business, she must go into customers’ homes. And her business was very busy. She was careful, but not all of her clients were. She had no idea how she got the infection, but it seems likely that it was from one of her clients. The good news is that her symptoms are mild and it looks like she will recover. Others are not so lucky. I had not met her in person since long before the virus started. So I had no exposure.

This awful pandemic will pass, but it may take a long time. The challenge is to stay in business and be very safe so we can all be here when the virus is finally a memory. Don’t take chances. Stay safe!