DEAR HARRIETTE: During the quarantine and shutdown, I closed my nail salon for 10 weeks. I had all the ups and downs, fears and frustrations people talk about.
So while we small businesses complied 100% in the fervent hope of reopening as soon as possible, the big box stores packed in the customers. The garden centers, grocery chains and hardware stores were completely crowded with no regulations, leading to the 10-week shutdown for the rest of us.
Unfortunately, my frustration bubbled over onto a friend when I called to see how she was faring. We have been friends for years. She has a similar small personal services business. She reported that she’d found a loophole and gotten her business deemed essential so she could stay open. She has a face-to-face business where she touches people’s bare skin.
As carefully as I could, but through clenched teeth, I asked her how she could justify elevating her services above mammograms and dental exams and such, which were all suspended. I was incensed because I felt she put us all at risk of staying home longer. I could hear that I highly offended her, and the rest of the call was strained. We haven’t spoken since.
I am now sorry, even though I firmly believe what she did was the height of bad ethics. I’m afraid to initiate an apology that could make things worse. But I do want to try to apologize. — Sorry in the South