08 April 2020

Kalimba Magic and Coronavirus

Posted in News and Announcements

We are open for business and we are practicing social isolation, hand cleaning, and more

Kalimba Magic and Coronavirus
Tip: if you use shea butter as a wood conditioner, you can disenfect your kalimba with 91% isopropyl alcohol

Welcome to the new world. While I don't know exactly what that means, I can do my best to reassure you that what we ship to you is safe and will not get you sick. This is important for all of us. Read more to find out what we are doing to keep ourselves - and YOU - safe!



Several people have asked: "Is Kalimba Magic able to ship in the current environment?" and even "Are you guys still in business?" Yes, we are operating with our normal working hours, but we have implemented some new procedures to help keep you safe.

This web site is not where you should go to find the best health safety information, such as how long coronavirus might last on different surfaces. However, we have read the CDC info and have changed our practices accordingly:

  • Kalimba Magic has just two people who come in contact with the kalimbas, boxes, etc: Mark Holdaway, and Mike Ankomeus. We two are practicing extreme social isolation so as not to come into contact with people with the virus. We both travel with alcohol wipes, and use them when we buy food from the store or get gas. When we bring food into our house, we assume that the outer packaging may have been contaminated, and we sterilize or remove the outer cardboard or plastic bags. We wash our hands several times during the day, especially when we first come in to work. We monitor our temperatures over the day - so far we are both stuck in the 96.1-97.9 degree range. (Yes, we are two cool dudes!)
  • Apparently, coronavirus can live on metal or plastic surfaces for 3 days. We do play every kalimba before we ship it out, and we usually touch up on the tuning and otherwise set up the instrument. That is, we get our hands all over the kalimbas. Even though we wipe the metal with 91% isopropyl alcohol, and even though we are being really careful about not being exposed to the virus, I recommend caution here. It takes 2 days or more for the box to travel on to you in the US mail - if you are conservative, you might want to put the box in quarantine for one more day after it arrives. When you get the kalimba, you should assume the outside box may have been contaminated in the mail. Open the box with gloves, remove the contents of the box without touching anything with your hands, throw away the outside box, and wash your hands. Just to be safe, you might want to wipe the tines off with an alcohol wipe.
  • Since coronavirus can persist on cardboard for something like 24 hours, we let incoming boxes (returns, shipping supplies, kalimbas to sell, CDs, and kalimba books) sit for at least 2 days before opening them up or touching them. Just one of the ways we are protecting ourselves.
  • Oh - did I say we haven't had any shipments from China since the end of 2019? And we haven't had any kalimbas from Africa since 2019 as well. That is, the kalimbas we are selling right now will not be contaminated from the source at this point. (That said, we do expect some kalimbas from China in May 2020. Still, by the time they get to us, we expect them to be safe.)
  • And if you are still ill-at-ease about buying something from Kalimba Magic, check out our downloads. Our downloads are mostly PDF ebooks with live links to the sound files. While you are sheltering in place, you can learn kalimba in the privacy of your home, using our virus-free downloads to help you every step of the way.

With good personal safety measures, you can greatly reduce or even eliminate your potential to exposure - which is not only important for your own safety, but so important for the safety of the entire human population. Be careful and be safe. You owe this to yourself, but you also owe this to the rest of us. Stay safe!

Oh, and to help you out in this difficult time, take 20% off your entire Kalimba Magic order (not including shipping) with the 20% off coupon code StaySafe20 which is valid through April 30 2020.

A personal note of hope: in September 2008, when Kalimba Magic was only 3 years old, the world held its breath through a huge financial crisis. In September 2008, I went three weeks with selling just one kalimba. In those days, I was selling on eBay, and I looked to see how the other kalimba sellers were faring. I could see about 20 kalimba sellers, and not one of them had any bids on their kalimbas. People were so freaked out by the crashing markets that the entire world had stopped buying kalimbas.

At this moment, we ARE selling kalimbas. In fact, kalimbas are a terrific way to occupy your hands and mind while we are waiting this out. In the 2020 coronavirus financial crisis, businesses that depend on walk-in customers are hurting badly or worse, but online businesses are, for the most part, hanging in there for the time being. This is all going to change the way we do business around the world. But I can assure you that when all is said and done, Kalimba Magic will come out alive and well!

And I have an excellent strategy for dealing with panic: play more kalimba!