Former Lakeshore Learning Store employee Corrine Konold, mother of Ashlynn Konold, has worked in retail since she was eighteen. Starting with the Sam Goody Record Store, she has seen companies rise and fall, but the Coronavirus has majorly affected how Colorado’s Lakeshore store is doing their business in a new everyday life. When the store first opened, there was a lot to handle. Many questions went unanswered but they were prepared. Corrine was a supervisor for Lakeshore and she commented on how their store ran pre-pandemic. “Before the pandemic the store was open for 11 hours a day and had staff in order to facilitate open that long. Two managers and typically two associates per day and we had regular shipments on Mondays and regular business and now post-pandemic the store is not open to guests in the building and instead it is only curb side. What that entails is through the website a guest can see what we have in stock and say they want to pick it up and it goes through the computer system and they reserve [their order] with their credit card and the computer system sends [the order] to our computer system and we pull all of that product and give the guest a call and because we are not set up to take credit cards over the phone then we have to go through and call to authorize with the credit card company and we have to call to verify the [buyer’s] address information and once that is done [the buyer] gets a receipt and they can call when to pick it up.” As Corrine described, nothing is near to what it used to be and for now there is no time in when things will truly open up and what that will look like.
This, however, is just one store out of thousands of companies – local and corporate. Each store will be set up different, each with different rules depending on the space around them. This is a learning curve for each and every person around the country and even around the world. The question at hand though is: will COVID-19 ever go away? If so, when? Will things go back to normal? And the honest answers, even from scientists, are just guesses. We don’t know, but the important thing about COVID-19 is to have hope and to help others who may be struggling during this hard time.