CHARLOTTE (QUEEN CITY NEWS) – In two years, a lot can change.
And two years ago, everyone was wondering what was coming next. The anxiety was palpable.
“It’s scary for us. It’s scary for our friends,” said Katy Kindred back on March 17, 2020.
On that date, restaurants were forced to close to sit down service, offering only takeout or outside service. Places like Kindred’s restaurant, Kindred, took a hit.
“Honestly, it’s light years better, obviously,” said Kindred when Queen City News spoke with her Thursday.
She said, back in 2020, there was a great deal of uncertainty and anxiety, and she know a lot of businesses tried but could not make it through.
Kindred has, but it has not come without some pandemic pain.
“The hardest part was letting everyone go,” said Kindred. “We had to lay off 100 people in one day, which was probably the most emotional day ever for me.”
The restaurant’s bounce-back has been slow and methodical, and largely based on restrictions easing in both Mecklenburg County and statewide.
Kindred said her restaurant is about as back to normal as it can be, with the exception of supply chain issues.
The mask mandate, which was one of the lasting parts of the pandemic, has also since ended, though some businesses can and still do require masks.
But Kindred noted there’s a change in perspective and expectations moving forward.
“We’re grateful that we’re here still, that we’re thriving and we’re grateful that our team is healthy,” she said. “We try not to focus so much on the challenges.”
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