This is an important week for Kentucky.
We continue the process of reopening businesses on Monday, with government offices bringing back their employees.
On Wednesday, retail stores — the ones that aren’t already open because they sell groceries — can open, and funerals can resume with precautions.
We will again be able to shop in more stores, attend worship services in person and support our friends and family in their grief.
Restaurants can open their dining rooms on Friday — at 33% of their seating capacity and unlimited outdoor seating.
We’ll be able to sit down and enjoy a meal in public again.
On May 25, hair salons and barber shops can reopen, along with massage therapy, nail salons, tanning salons and tattoo parlors.
Gray hair will disappear and the shaggy look will be out.
We’re about to walk into that “new normal” they’ve been talking about for the past two months.
But we have to be careful.
The coronavirus hasn’t gone away.
And it doesn’t look like it will any time soon.
So we need to be very careful out there.
We can’t start hugging and shaking hands again just yet.
We need to keep wearing our masks.
We can’t forget to keep that six feet between ourselves and others.
And we have to continue to wear gloves and/or scrub our hands as often as possible.
That’s still important.
Our economy is restarting.
And things should start getting a little better for a lot of us.
It’s tempting to want to run back out and start acting like we did way back in February.
But — and this is important — if this thing flares up again and we have a big wave of new cases, we’ll probably have to shut things back down again.
And it may be for even longer than it was this time.
And none of us want that.
Enjoy the “new normal” and stay safe.
Keith Lawrence, 270-691-7301, firstname.lastname@example.org