Welcome Back SoCal: Diners, restaurant workers excited about reopening at full capacity

Diners as well as restaurant workers are very excited to see businesses reopening at full capacity in the near future.

To listen to John Willis for the last 15 months has been chaotic and heart-wrenching! Says Willis, "I lost about five family members back to back to back to back so the whole family was wiped out."

RELATED: California aims to fully reopen its economy on June 15, Gov. Newsom says

During the pandemic, Esther Jimenez’s husband had a health crisis. She tells FOX 11,  "In July he had bypass surgery so it was a rough summer in more ways than one."

Jeff Davis is the General Manager at Blue Jam Cafe. He says COVID changed everything from where they stored things for outdoor dining to how they did business and when. 

RELATED: Welcome Back SoCal: Local reaction to California's June 15 reopening of economy

Davis says, "What’s been mostly gut-wrenching for me is the staff having to come and go. Shut down. Open up. Shut down. Open up. The support we’ve gotten from the community has been bittersweet. I’ve seen businesses around us not do as well."

To keep from having the same fate as his neighboring businesses this restaurant like so many others had to spend money to install plexiglass, open an outdoor dining area, distance tables, bag and seal utensils to give to customers and invest in QR Codes for menus, ordering and paying the bill. 

Davis says a lot of these things aren’t going to go away especially the QR codes.

In fact, Davis says the outdoor seating may expand. And, as far as some of the customers are concerned they’d like to see safety measures continue. It makes some of them feel more comfortable and protected. Sarah Tiana wants table distancing to continue.

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She says, "I’m very excited that things are going to open up and I’m ready for things to open, to not have our masks on, to feel normal but Have really enjoyed not getting a cold or being close to people… hearing other peoples conversations when you’re dining. ya know."

Those QR Codes are a hit with Wendy Guzman who says, she likes them because "you don’t have to touch the menu and you’re not dealing with cash." She adds, she feels safer that way.

And Anny Kim agrees. Kim says, "I’m a little bit of a germaphobe, to begin with so this is great for me."

Meanwhile, for John Willis who had five family members wiped out by COVID, it’s all about safety even after June 15th. His bottom line? "I do want the world to get back to where it was two years ago."