Shot in the Arm

It seemed to happen very suddenly.

I had been waiting to become eligible to get the Corvid 19 vaccine. Educators were not included in the first round of vaccinations. There was a lot of waiting. Then I became eligible but appointments were scarce if not possible to get.

Vaccine envy is a real thing and I experienced it as friends or coworkers got appointments and then later that shot in the arm.

Then on Monday, after repeated attempts to find appointments on my fourth attempt, they appeared suddenly. I booked one for Wednesday, scarcely believing this was real.

The reason that there were so many appointments available was that the Federal Government had opened a massive vaccination site across the bay in the parking lot of Oakland Coliseum.

So just after noon I headed over the Bay Bridge and then south down 880 toward the place were I had seen my first concert (Billy Joel) as well as my last concert (Iron Maiden). I know I have eclectic tastes.

I was directed into the parking lot and I was entering into a well oiled machine run with military efficiency by FEMA. It restored my faith in government. That big government does care about people and at it’s best, can help at a massive scale.

There were thousands of traffic cones that led me on a serpentine course and National Guard soldiers that directed cars into different vaccination bays. I pulled into Bay 5. I was asked a battery of questions, which I answered in the negative and then rolled up my sleeve and received the first injection of the Pfizer vaccination.

I was then given by vaccination card and directed to pull forward to the 15 minute waiting period area to see if there were any adverse reactions to the vaccination before being released.

The line of cars slowly inched forward.

The last contact was an older man, decked out in a mask, radio, and florescent vest. I thanked him for the efficiency of the operation.

He replied, “Thank you, that means a lot.”

The total time from entrance to exit: 30 minutes!

A note about the sketch: This is a feeble attempt at a Joseph Zbukvic painting of the scene.

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