I still don’t wear a mask walking through the hallways and staircases of my apartment building to do laundry or check the mail, but I am once again donning a mask when entering supermarkets, retail stores, and other indoor businesses.
My reasoning is simple:
The people who live in my building are analogous to cohabitants in a bubble. We let each other pass with distance when applicable; but, usually, I’m alone when walking to and from. Also, many of my neighbors are older or live with young kids and, while that doesn’t mean anything, I take comfort that they presumably practice safe behavior.
In other places, though, such as grocery stores and healthcare offices, I don’t know the lifestyles of those strangers. I don’t know if they’re unmasked because of vaccination or because they want to be perceived as vaccinated. I’m also cognizant of virus variants.
While I embraced the freedom of shopping while unmasked for the past few weeks, I am masked again. Echoing the dogma of 2020, the three-layer mask protects me and, in the chance I’m asymptomatic, I’m also protecting someone else.