I thought I would post a sort of running commentary on how I see people in our town reacting to the Coronavirus.
I would be very interested to read similar posts from different locations. This is such an unusual time for the world.
We live in a very rural part of California, although we are within a couple of hundred miles of the San Francisco area (referred to as the "Bay Area").
All of the towns surrounding us are separated by 20 ~ 40 miles within rolling hills and mountains.
Up until this past Friday (March 13th) I had not seen any public activity related to the virus. I would casually mention the virus when conversating with locals, and most seemed to not even know what I was talking about.
Our local news outlets have had only a few related articles, but mostly to say that the local health department was trying to ready itself for potential cases, though as of yet there were no reported cases in our area.
..on March 10th, two cases were confirmed in our town. This seemed to pick the news-cycle up a bit, and when I went into a nearby (larger) town to do some grocery shopping, there were long lines with grocery carts full. The toilet-paper shelves were nearly cleaned out.
I noticed some older people had latex gloves on, but I did not see any face-masks.
My household has been slowly building up a two-weeks supply of groceries and house-hold items, in the event that we will all be staying home for some time and wish to avoid crowded lines at the grocery store. I have also been making sure that all vehicles are full of petrol, and I have an extra 5-gallon petrol container.
Also, we have a small supply of cold and flu remedies on hand in the event we contract the virus and are miserable in bed for a couple of weeks.
Lastly, we have preventatives on hand that we have been taking daily: immune-boosters, elderberry syrup, herbal teas. Plenty of good sleep, sex and low stress are also good immune-boosters so we try to practice that as much as possible (although we have an active 3yr old so sleep and sex are sometimes forfeit)
My wife is an elementary school teacher, and currently the school is still in attendance, so she has been going to work each day and our son goes to school. The schools have been cancelling events though.
I have been staying at home with our daughter, although we make occasional trips to town for various chores.
We are not in lock-down mode yet by any means, but many large public events are being cancelled. People are certainly becoming more thoughtful, but the panic is still very low-level here.