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Spires: Traveling during a pandemic

Spires: Traveling during a pandemic

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We are in the process of moving my wife’s mother to Florida and have flown to Pennsylvania.

Back at Christmas we had to cancel our trip because the state of Pennsylvania put a 10-day quarantine on anyone who entered the state.

So, if you are planning a trip in the near future, be sure and check out that the state you are going to enter doesn’t have a quarantine time.

I’m not sure why, but for some reason, it took extra time to go through the TSA checkpoint. Usually, it moves along fairly quickly.

This time, they literally went through our carry-on bags, piece by piece, so we had a string of those plastic trays on the conveyor belt. Ironically, no one checked our temperature.

We flew from Tallahassee to Atlanta on a full plane. The Atlanta terminal was the least busy I have ever seen it. There were plenty of people, but not on the scale that I am familiar with.

The flight to Harrisburg was less than 50-percent full – something I haven’t seen in years.

You are required to wear your mask at all times while flying, by the way. Except to eat or drink. The same in the terminal.

Both of us now have our “COVID shot card,” and no one ever asked if we had one, which kind of disappointed me, since it was so difficult to get the thing. I almost had it laminated and hung it around my neck.

We are in Amish Country and the weather is cold at night and comfortable in the 60s during the day. They had more snow this year than in the past 10 years with the last one being about a month ago.

I like to ramble, so as I drove around, I found a pile of snow left over from one of the snowplows. It was in a real shady area and about 20 feet long and 5 feet high.

The real challenge still is ahead, as we bring “Nana” back with us. That will be another column for a later date.

So, if you plan to travel, be sure to do a little homework about COVID and especially possible quarantine requirements.

If you are flying, get to the airport a little earlier than you usually do, especially if you are using Atlanta. One lady told us it took two hours to get through the TSA checkpoint.

Byron Spires is a retired newspaper editor. He has written dozens of short stories and serials in the Havana Herald. He recently published “The Curious Life of Marci Bell” in a series of three books. You can email him at


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