Buice column: Another addition to the COVID count

Published 12:05 am Thursday, July 7, 2022

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Like everyone else, I thought I knew a lot about COVID-19 … even though I never had it.
That changed last month, some two years and three months after the arrival of the novel coronavirus. I finally got COVID.
For those keeping score, I found an update from one national publication stating that more than half of the people living in the U.S. have been infected in the United States with over 1 million deaths. Closer to home, Forsyth County recently passed 100,000 COVID cases.
Wow. Those are mind-blowing numbers. And now, I’m part of the count.
I thought it was strange a few weeks ago on a scorching summer day when I found my place on the love seat that night and felt a chilly body and hot head — not a good combination.
Thinking it was just some kind of bug, I eventually went on to bed, and during the night, my wife woke up with similar symptoms and not feeling well.
Having to tend frequently to an elderly dad and two young grandchildren, she decided taking one of those government COVID tests we ordered earlier in the year might be a good idea. It came back negative.
By this time, both of us had added cough and congestion to the checklist, and we stayed close to home for the most part.
Between the two of us, she felt worse, and after another fitful night’s sleep, she opted to take the test again the next morning. It came back positive. I followed with the same result. We had officially joined a club we had long tried to avoid.
The fever subsided the next day or two for both of us while the cough and congestion continued to hang on past the first five days as things slowly improved.
Where did this come from? Of course, we’ll never know. If you leave the house, you’re potentially at risk, despite the best of efforts to stay safe. We were both fully vaccinated, and I was boosted, but sometimes these days it doesn’t seem like it makes that much difference.
Luckily, we were at a point in our schedules where being shut down wasn’t terribly disruptive. And we gave thanks for knowing we were in a better spot now than those who came down with COVID in the earlier days with all the hospitalizations … and so many deaths.
We know it could have been a lot worse for sure.

• • • • •

In all my years of covering town government, I’ve never seen one quite like the first half of 2022 with a steady stream of potential residential developments going before the local boards.
I mean, in the three municipalities that I cover, all have experienced standing-room only crowds this year for various projects that have drawn the interest of residents for a variety of reasons.
On nights where these “hot-button” items aren’t on the agenda, it’s usually just the respective mayors, councils, staffs, a handful of guests and me in attendance.
One of the latest in Clemmons involving voluntary annexation and a rezoning request for Harper Acres seems like it has been dragging along all year with an overflow gathering barely settling in their seats on May 9 before both items were continued to the June 27 meeting.
Another full house arrived last week for another try. This time, the voluntary annexation was approved, but the rezoning part was continued again until September — with it first going before the planning board again in August.
Many residents in Waterford have voiced their opposition to the potential development with 58 lots on 26-plus acres because of the impact to the existing infrastructure and environment.
In Lewisville, residents came out strong in opposition in March to a possible development of 61 houses on 58 acres along picturesque Conrad Road, forcing the developer to reconsider.
Bermuda Run was anticipating a large crowd in its May meeting on a rezoning request of 22.5 acres between Lowes Foods and Kinderton Village for a proposed multi-family residential development with 270 units. On the day of the meeting, the applicant withdrew the request.
Then there’s Riverwalk, a proposed 540-home residential development on over 300 acres on Idols Road across from Tanglewood Park under the jurisdiction of Forsyth County — just outside the city limits of Clemmons. Nearby residents have expressed concerns on traffic, the environment and adding to overcrowded schools.
And these are just some of the biggest and most visible in our area. There are many others.
I’ve always had a lot of respect for the work done by town planners dealing with all the regulations and technicalities they have to address. Their jobs certainly aren’t going to get easier any time soon.