Vaccination Roulette

“Waiting to Connect”

It’s been a heck of a year, hasn’t it?

On top of everything else, WP has now forced me into the block editor.  I hate it.  I absolutely hate it!  But like all other mandated changes, I’ll just have to learn to live with it.  If I stop posting completely, you’ll all know why.  (Can anyone tell me how to add Categories and Tags to a post?  I can’t figure that out.)

Moving on to the real subject of this post:

How are you all doing on scheduling appointments for the COVID-19 vaccination?  Having fun?  Wearing out that “refresh” button?

When hubby and I first became eligible to receive the vaccine, due to our advanced age, I immediately started looking for appointments.  Everything was booked.  And I mean everything.  We heard tales of friends and relatives who were traveling hours to another city or state to receive a vaccine.  We weren’t willing to drive for hours, especially considering we’d have to do it all over again in a few weeks for the second dose.

Every day, several times a day, I would search the New York State site as well as the sites for all the local pharmacies and grocery stores in an effort to find that elusive first dose reservation for my husband.  A colleague opined that some of the problem was people who were scheduling  multiple appointments just to be sure they’d have one. 

I began to wonder if there was some kind of black market for vaccination appointments.

I was about to give up, until one Thursday when I was off work, with no particular plans.  On that day, I spent the entire morning going from one website to another.  After several hours, I decided to try the CVS pharmacy site one last time – and, hallelujah!, there was an open appointment at a store only 30 minutes away.  Hubby got scheduled and got his first dose, with the second dose being scheduled for 4 weeks later (just FYI – Pfizer’s doses are 21 days apart, Moderna’s are 28 days).

My problem was a little different.  I am on Remicade infusions, every 6 weeks.  I had heard from a relative who is also on Remicade that her doctor advised her to schedule her vaccination either two weeks before an infusion or two weeks after, to avoid any drug interaction or any reduction in the vaccine’s efficacy.  Her infusions were every 8 weeks, so while scheduling was tough, she was able to make her two appointments – at a state-run site in Syracuse, two-and-a-half hours away.

Having infusions every 6 weeks made scheduling of a two-dose vaccine nearly impossible for me.  No matter how I tried to figure it and no matter whether I chose Pfizer or Moderna, it seemed I would only be able to schedule the first dose within the recommended time windows.  I resigned myself to having to wait for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which is only one dose.  But no one was offering J&J; who knew when it might become available?

Meanwhile, eligibility for the vaccines kept being expanded, so that more and more people were vying for the few appointments available.  It looked like I wouldn’t be getting vaccinated any time soon.

Then, yesterday, I decided to call my own GI doctor for his opinion on how I could schedule a two-dose vaccine around my Remicade infusions.  He said while two weeks before/after would be ideal, it was not necessary; he said to just try to schedule somewhere in the middle of the time period between infusions.

Considering that, I decided to take my chances, and I went online.  I really didn’t want to go to a mass vaccination clinic run by the state, mostly because I was worried about parking and having to walk too far.  CVS and Walgreens had no appointments available within a reasonable driving distance,  I did consider scheduling an appointment at a pharmacy in Batavia, Jamestown, or Rochester – farther than I wanted to go, but do-able.

Just on a whim, I decided to try Wegmans one last time.  For the last two months, Wegmans has had no available appointments anywhere.  But I’m the optimistic sort.

Won’t wonders never cease?  Only a few minutes before I landed on their site, they had opened up a new block of appointments – at every one of their stores in my area.  I wouldn’t have to drive for hours!  I wouldn’t have to go late in the afternoon during rush hour!  There would be plenty of parking close to the store!

I managed to book my first dose appointment for 11:00 am today, at the store only 2 minutes from my house.  For the Moderna vaccine – which would give me 4 weeks to schedule the second dose, instead of the 3 weeks required by Pfizer.  Definitely do-able.

Wegmans ran things efficiently.  There was a very short wait while paperwork was completed, then the shot (which was painless and over before I knew it), and I was home by 11:30 a.m.  So far, there have been no side effects.  No arm soreness, no headache, no dizziness.  I don’t even feel particularly tired.


In 4 weeks, I get the second Moderna dose.  And then I’m done, at least until such time as the CDC decides we all need booster shots.

How are the rest of you doing?  If you want a vaccine, have you been able to schedule an appointment?  Have you had your shots?  Did everything go well?  Feel free to leave comments below.

Only 2 days ’til Spring!  Stay warm, safe, and healthy, everyone.


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Images by Cordelia’s Mom/TeddyRosalieStudio

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41 Responses to Vaccination Roulette

  1. Marc Beebe says:

    Canada is now trying to beg vaccines off the USA. We’ve already tried every other country in the world. We spent $1 billion ‘securing’ “429 million” doses that no one has seen. We ‘bought’ 70 million doses from China which never arrived because they had no intention of sending us any from the start. I can’t even sign up for it until June or July. The government here is proud of how they are handling it, even though it is arguably the worst distribution in the entire world.
    On the up side the test they shoved up my nose while I was in hospital last week was negative.


  2. Carol says:

    In our state, the local three-county area has a website that allowed me to sign up for a shot, specifying my age category. Then, when shots were available for that age group, they sent me an email with a link to making an appointment online. Easy peezy. I had my first vaccine Feb. 24, get the second on March 24th – yes, Moderna. Both my daughter and her husband have had both shots because they’re teachers – neither had any side-effects after the first other than the usual sore arm, but after the second they had minor chills, fever, headache – the kind of flu-type symptoms that make you want to lay down and nap. Those symptoms are good things – they let you know the vaccine is doing it’s job.


  3. It sounds a lot like our story. It took me two weeks to get Garry scheduled and basically, because Massachusetts’s arrangement was total chaos, I finally found a vaccination appointment for him at a high school in Dartmouth — a mere 50 mile drive (each way). I found that appointment on a Thursday night — after the late news, but before Colbert. It was LONG drive and there was a lot of traffic, but it got done, so he is fully vaccinated. Massachusetts was going entirely by AGE, so your physical issues weren’t even “on the table” and since I’m merely 74 (you had to be over 75 to get on the list), I had to wait. Astonishingly, suddenly a bunch of vaccinations opened up at a CVS in Sturbridge which is just 25 miles away. For us, that’s a quick jaunt! I got my first on in the beginning of the month. Right after I got my first shot, the local hospital called and asked me if I needed the vaccine — and this after we had been told that the hospitals weren’t getting any more vaccines. What? Anyway, I get my second one on 3/29.

    Now, about the block editor. Yes, they did it to me too last night. I can cope with it for text, but it is AWFUL for photographs and particularly obnoxious for galleries. Everything that was easy is now difficult. And all the “special features” we were supposed to get with this format suddenly are gone and to get them, you have to pay some pretty big money. I don’t have the money and if I did, I don’t have a business or a brand. For me to pay for a business format is ridiculous. I’m NOT a business,.

    I think I’m going to be doing a lot less posting of photographs. It’s just too difficult.

    I can’t find tags and categories (or stick to top of page) with any consistency either. Sometimes there it is, and then it disappears and I can’t figure out how to get it back. Also, it’s difficult to change anything once you’ve written it. You also can’t set the style for pictures in advance. You have to adjust EACH picture each time you use it. It’s very clumsy and very slow and frankly, very unprofessional. I’m already posting a lot less and this is just going to minimize the amount I do even more. I’m trying not to hate it, but I hate it anyway.


  4. Re classic editor, can you access new posts through your dashbord?
    If so, there is an option for classic editor from the drop down menu (screen print in above post)


    • Yeah, I was able to use the classic editor (and did, for this post), but it doesn’t allow for adding of categories or tags, as far as I can tell.


      • That dropdown memory disappeared last night. I WAS using it. It is gone. It will take a while before it rolls out to everyone, but be warned: it IS on the way. The new “post” page is entirely different. So is the comment page. There is not shortcut to editing or fixing pictures or even changing publishing dates. Ugly.


        • It definitely sucks. Pisses me off ’cause I’ve paid my annual subscription and now I may not be able to use it.


          • I think you’ll find text isn’t much of an issue. It just takes a little getting used to. But graphics? That’s a whole other issue and it’s a big problem. Also, they have made it really hard to find the editing section. Once you’ve set it to publish, if you need to go back to fix a sentence or a typo, it’s really hard to figure out where the editing functionality is. You can’t just click “edit.” Everything is buried somewhere under something else. It’s not a design for people who really write. It’s meant for people who flip off a quick (and probably short) text using maybe a picture and never go back and edit or fix it. Very amateurish.

            Liked by 1 person

      • Shame. I’m doing OK, but use a laptop so that might account for it. Have a good weekend.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. ladyryl says:

    Things are by age and circumstances/health issues in Ontario….
    Mom and Dad are preregistered for their vaccine as per their age, they will get a call once they get up the queue and book their appointment that way.
    My group is not slated to open up for preregistration until at least April, I am keeping a close eye on my region’s website to find out when and where that can happen for me.


    • After we got our first responders vaccinated, the next class was over-65, then they added under-65 but with co-morbidities like diabetes, heart disease, etc., then added obesity to that. Now teachers and anyone with a public-facing job is eligible. As each group is added, it gets a little harder to snag an appointment. After I snagged mine, the rest of the Wegmans’ appointments were all taken up within an hour or two. Ya gotta be quick to score one.


  6. beth says:

    it was a huge challenge in michigan as well. i’m an in person teacher, have been all year, and over 60 and it took a lot of time online and many weeks before i had my first appointment, then the second.


  7. Dan Antion says:

    I’m glad you found an opening.

    Depending on your view in the Block Editor, there should be a sidebar panel on the right. At the top of that panel, there is a tab for “Post” and “Block” – it defaults to “Block” when you’re typing. Switch it to “Post” and you will see the options for scheduling, setting categories and tabs.


    • Thank you Dan! It took a bit of maneuvering, but I found it and was able to add my categories and tabs.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Archon's Den says:

        If that doesn’t work, click top-left on My Site. Scroll to the bottom, to WP Admin, and left click. It will open a new tab. Hover cursor over Posts. Click on All. At top left, a New Posts will appear. Click, and a two-part prompt will appear, Block Editor/Classic Editor. Obviously, click on Classic, and you’re in plain-language business again. Any questions or problems, contact Lady Ryl – she taught me. That’s how I got here tonight. 😀


        • I tried all that, Archon. There no longer is a WP Admin button anywhere on my screen. I know how to get to the new Classic Editor, but the problem was figuring out how to add categories and tags. Fortunately, Dan Antion was able to help me with that.


          • Archon's Den says:

            The next day, I didn’t have a WordPress Admin. button either Grrr! Another blogger suggests the following.
            On the top right, in the black line, beside the notification bell is your picture (or whatever image you have chosen). Click on that and it will bring you to your your Profile. On the left you will see Account Settings. Click on that and scroll down and you will see Interface Settings, just below that is a button under Dashboard Appearance. Click it until it is black. Scroll down under the colour options and save. You will have the main editor back and when you click on Posts, at the top you have the Add New and you can choose classic editor.
            I haven’t tried it yet. I’m waiting till Sunday for the daughter to explain and supervise. I saw the movie ‘War Games.’ 😯 😳


  8. markbialczak says:

    First, off, congratulations! I’m so glad to hear that you and your hubbie are both now first-shot protected!! Karen and both had it much easier getting in our shots. She found her appointment via her medical-tied job, and the shot came at a local hospital. I got in relatively quickly online at that big state-run site in Syracuse that you mentioned. We both have both shots in now and count ourselves as fortunate. Daughter Elisabeth also got her shots in because she is medical-related front-facing. Significant George just got his first shot at the state site. So our tight circle feels like we are almost completely finished until the booster comes out.


    • Fortunately, that state-run site in Syracuse is pretty much in your own back yard. For us, it’s a 2.5 hour drive. My daughter and her fiance had no problem with that, they just considered it a nice little day trip (twice). While I wouldn’t mind driving to Syracuse to visit you and some other friends who live there, the idea of going 2.5 hours just to get a shot and then turn around and come back – and then do it again 3 weeks later – was definitely not appealing; and, of course, as it turned out, by waiting I was able to find a vaccination site in my own back yard. Of course, it doesn’t matter where anyone gets their shots, so long as they do. Have a good weekend, Mark.


  9. willowdot21 says:,commas)%20into%20the%20edit%20field.

    I hope this helps. I am saying nothing about the Vaccinations …

    Hubby and I and two of our sons have ours …I just wish we could all just share.


  10. willowdot21 says:

    BTW. Hubby and I have had our first shots, Astrozenica, I went to a national hub, half an hour away, beautifully run, calm pleasant and quiet, hubby went to a local one 10 minutes walk from our house his experience was great like mine. We have 11 to 12 weeks between first and second dose. We are all invited and have the choice of a near by hub or even nearer GP. Local option. Our two older boys both in their late 40’s, have had theirs too due to both being Chronic asthma suffers and one has a job that daily exposes him to the public. Our youngest son and his wife are in their late thirties they will have to wait a while yet. 💜💜💜


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