See you at the pump

Published 6:26 pm Wednesday, May 12, 2021

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Over the past year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have all experienced shortages of necessities such as toilet paper, hand sanitizer and cleaning products and even luxuries such as our favorite brand of toilet paper, hand sanitizer and cleaning products. 

Seriously, who would have thought that finding a package of 12 rolls of Charmin could bring such joy? Depending on the month securing a package of toilet paper, any brand or non-brand was considered a big score, and many of us couldn’t wait to post a picture of our found treasure on social media and share our good fortune. Such posts prompted our relatives and friends to get in the car and quickly head to the location of said treasure and get some for themselves before it was all gone.

Things got better after a few months, and it just became a hit-or-miss affair. One day our sought-after items would be in stock and the next they wouldn’t. We adjusted, tried something new that was available, or we just waited until our favorite was back. After a year of shortages, we got used to the idea that on any given day we might not be able to find our favorite syrup, coffee creamer and so on and just adapted to the situation. 

One of the unexpected side effects (but most welcome) of the COVID-19 pandemic was the drop in the price of gas. A surplus in gas meant we got to fill up our cars for under $2 a gallon. Score!

Once the pandemic began to subside and the demand for gas rose, the prices rose right along with it. That was to be expected, and we adapted. After all, we have had plenty of experience adapting over the past year. 

What we didn’t expect was a cybersecurity attack on the Colonial Pipeline, which delivers fuel to about 45% of the East Coast. What just last week was plentiful and available with the transfer of some funds this week reminds us that funds may not be enough to secure necessities such as a tank of gas. 

Here’s to hoping the gas situation is quickly resolved and we don’t have to resort to hunting for treasure on social media again.