I'm back at work, and the month or so I haven't been blogging was... pretty ordinary. I worked, I went home, I'm back at work.
Home was amazing- B family reunion, and my ONE surviving cousin on my side was there, too. We spent 4 days together down my way in S. FL. I hadn't seen half the fam since my mom passed away a few years ago. I think I can say with confidence that we'll be getting together more. We really do share the same humor for the most part, although I did tone it down a bit, as there were ladies present, so all was well.
Flying back earlier this week, there were a few folks in surgical masks, dust masks, bandannas, etc over their faces. Traveling has certainly been curtailed by the coronavirus. The Miracle Flight out of Palm Beach airport (30 people preboard in wheelchairs, 27 exit under their own power) which is completely full 9 times out of 10 had nobody in the middle seats, so it was VERY comfortable.
Not being immunocompromised, I wasn't worried, and am not worried about my own health. I have several weeks' food stockpiled at home for the fam. Hopefully there will be minimal disruption in services and those among us who are at elevated risk take good care of themselves.
Thus far there has been plenty of container ship traffic in Port Newark, NY/NJ's busiest port. I'm led to understand that there's a big dropoff in container ship sailings from China, so that will work its' way over here eventually. Have to see how that works out.
I am tempted to be optimistic and dismissive of the claims of armageddon, but I am starting to think that the disruption of supplies will create a lot of headaches. China's main ports are reporting a 20% decline in year-over-year volume for the month of February, but we're talking about China, who are NOT famed for being honest even on good days and these do not appear to be good days. So who knows.
We've swapped over on the HQ to handle exclusively low-sulfur fuel products in the face of the new global cap on sulfur content in fuels. With March 1 having passed, ships are not even allowed to carry high sulfur fuels aboard unless they have scrubbing systems aboard, and not a lot of ships have scrubbers. With skyrocketing demand for low-sulfur fuel, plus the cascade effect of having to make room for low-sulfur fuels in shoreside storage, this has caused a bit of a spike in high-sulfur fuels anyhow, so I suppose this was inevitable. Between increased fuel costs and decreased container traffic, I expect we'll see some container ships laid up if things don't get resolved in China soon.
I don't know if I'll be blogging more now that I've had a little break or not, but I'm open to the idea. Might be a nice way to pass the next month until I come home again.