Last year around this time, there were many unknowns to Amanda Rolf and her Lincoln Park store, Liila Boutique.
“When the pandemic first started and there were no vaccines, it was really scary – for me personally – because last year I was the only person working in the store,” Rolf said. “So it was a little scary to think ‘well if I get sick I’ll have to close for two weeks.'”
This year, the introduction of the COVID vaccine and more staff have eased the burden.
This holiday season, a number of local businesses are concerned about a resurgence of business in addition to supply chain problems.
Rolf says that since many companies already have a shortage of employees, taking one or two people off a schedule is stressful enough.
Corktown Deli, a neighbor of Liila Boutique, is showing signs of the wave by closing this week amid concerns over COVID.
“There’s been a big ‘what if’ thrown into the holiday season and with supply chains and everything else it’s been a little stressful already.”
Rolf is now considering whether to add safety guidelines to her store again, saying it’s a decision she’ll likely have to make soon.
“As a business owner, we do our best. We try to protect our employees and we try to protect our customers.”
Rolf says her biggest request from the community: be kind and be patient.