Being an Essential Worker During Covid-19

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Caroline Linton '21 during one of her shifts. Photo by Caroline Linton.

Isabel Alderete, Staff Writer

Picture this: as you arrive to work, there is already a line around the corner. People are waiting in line, six feet apart of course, in hopes of getting their hands on one carton of eggs or one bottle of hand sanitizer. You strap on you mask, put on your gloves, and mentally prepare yourself for the work day as an essential worker.

As an essential worker, Caroline Linton ’21 often experiences this. Caroline works at Mother’s Market in Brea, and despite the threat of the Coronavirus, she is still bravely working.

Caroline prepping for the day with protective gear. Photo by Caroline Linton.

Caroline’s typical work day starts by putting on her protective gear. As a cashier, she wears gloves and a face mask through out her entire shift. She also has hand sanitizer and extra strength disinfecting wipes at her register at all times. Then she prepares herself for the long and crazy work day. “With all the craziness, it’s busy all the time. It used to be busy in the morning and evening when people weren’t at work, but with the quarantine, every hour is just as busy as the last,” she shared.

Caroline admitted to her works days being extremely stressful. Mother’s customers tend to get very frustrated with the lack of certain products, such as pasta, rice, and eggs, and Caroline has to listen to their complaints. “I’m not really worried for my health but more for my mental state. The people shopping tend to be more high maintenance and are understandably frustrated with lack of products, but I have nothing to do with restocking so I can’t really help them,” she stated.

One of Mother’s delicious juices. Photo provided by Caroline Linton.

Despite the stressful hours, Caroline still loves working at Mother’s. Her coworkers are some of her closest friends, and she loves spending time with them. She stated, “The supervisors and managers are so kind and have personal and friendly connections with all the employees. Also the discounts on delicious juices and snacks aren’t bad.” If you ever find yourself at Mother’s Market, Caroline recommends trying Ma’s Chocolate Pudding and Boulder Canyon Avocado Oil Jalapeno Potato Chips.

Caroline plans on working throughout the rest of the quarantine, no matter how long it is. Even though she typically works 2 days a week, she still doesn’t consider herself “essential.” “It’s weird that I’m considered essential, especially when customer thanks me for coming into work,” she stated. Caroline is just thankful for being able to work during these crazy times, and she’s happy to do her part.

Caroline sure is brave for working during self-quarantive. Please pray for her and her mental health. If you’re ever in need of some snacks, be sure to visit Caroline at Mother’s Market in Brea, but make sure to wear gloves and a mask. Safety first.