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RESTAURANT/CHEF PROFILE  .   .   .

The pubication of this month's magazine was in process when the terrible coronavirus struck the U.S. Sadly it is not fully completed.

March has proven to be the most devasting and disasteris period I can remember for the hospitality industry including hotels, restaurants, wine makers, bars/cocktail lounges and ultimately everything affecting the tourism in Europe and the United States as a result of the horrendous Pandemic that has attacked human life on our planet.

I love in Santa Barbara, located a few hours from Los Angeles, and we are all in quarintine and preparing to face the possible terrors being reported from Italy, France, China and other countries around the world. My prayers for all of you and for my own country and people. Please wear a mask, don't touch your face, wash your hands very often and STAY AT HOME! See  Govenor info below.

Bonnie Carroll, Publisher, Editor-in-Chief

NEW YORK — A Navy hospital ship dispatched to help with the response to the coronavirus pandemic arrived Monday in New York harbor, as New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo ominously warned residents that the worst is yet to come.

The USNS Comfort, a hospital ship with approximately 1,000 patient beds, will dock in the harbor to alleviate the strain on the city's hospitals as cases of COVID-19 climb across all five boroughs.

Health officials report more than 66,497 cases of the coronavirus in New York State, and more than 36,200 of those cases are in New York City. More than 1,200 people have died.

The ship will be used to treat less critical patients and those who have not been infected with the virus in order to free up space in hospitals, which have become overrun with COVID-19 patients. At a press conference, Mayor Bill de Blasio said watching the ship arrive was a "very emotional moment" and called it "a beacon of hope."

"Help has come. Relief is on its way," de blasio said. "There have been times in recent days when a lot of New Yorkers have felt alone. … I want to say to all New Yorkers you are not alone."

Of the 1,000 beds, 750 will become available almost immediately and patients will begin to be transferred on Tuesday. The mayor said the Comfort will allow entire hospitals to transform into intensive care units for the most critical patients. De Blasio estimated that nearly half of New Yorkers could become infected with the coronavirus and said New York City will have to triple its hospital capacity by May.

With the ship comes approximately 1,200 personnel, as well as labs, a pharmacy and operating rooms. De Blasio said the ship brings "an extraordinary complement of health care professionals" and he is "thankful that our nation has heard our plea for help."

Thomas Von Essen, the regional administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency Region II, said the ship's arrival was a "sign of what our government is like when we push our government to act."

"Everybody you know is affected by the coronavirus," Essen said. "I know how tough the people of this city are … and once again we need to be together."

Cuomo echoed this sentiment in a separate news briefing, saying "If there was ever a moment for unity, this, my friends, is the moment."

CAL GOVERNOR GAVIN NEWSOM UPDATES . . .

California Gov. Gavin Newsom placed the state's National Guard on alert Tuesday in case local communities would need protection to continue fighting the spread of the coronavirus disease, known as COVID-19.

The governor's directive is not for the National Guard to mobilize but instead to prepare for possibly being called to duty, according to CBS San Francisco.

"Take time now to prepare your personal equipment, make plans with your family, and identify through your chain of command any issues that need to be resolved," the California National Guard advised its troops.

Newsom's status as governor also makes him commander-in-chief of the California National Guard, allowing him to call the troops into action. If they were to be activated, troops would perform humanitarian tasks, like distributing food and ensuring public safety.

Newsom's action is one of many that the governor is taking in an attempt to stunt the spread of the coronavirus throughout the state. Most recently, the governor announced that California schools will likely stay closed through spring over coronavirus concerns. And as part of a multi-million-dollar statewide effort led by Newsom, two hotels have already been leased in Oakland that will offer 400 rooms to the homeless population in the area. Similar efforts are being made throughout the state to house California's unhoused.


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© 2008 Bonnie Carroll, All Rights Reserved