Today is Sunday, a day when church activities play a usual role in our lives. The choir is no longer rehearsing, and services have been suspended until further notice. We were able to watch “Sunday Morning” on CBS in real time. Our day is filled with the things of staying home: reading, writing, exercising, cooking, and later we’ll watch some British television via Acorn TV. Son Todd brought us some eggs from his shopping trip this morning. He left them in the garage – no direct contact.

Minnesota has had 14 fatalities from covid-19 as of a few minutes ago.  Hospitals are not equipped as they need to be; health care workers are weary from too much work with not enough support. This is not going as well as it should in this country.

Yesterday we had some sad news about a long-time friend from our Minnesota Education Association (MEA) days. Bill Haring was active on the Government Relations Council and the PAC Board (Impace MEA) with me for several years. We lobbied in Washington D.C. and at the MN legislature. We attended state and national NEA activities, and he and his wife shared many interests with us. We’ve remained in touch since the 1980s. Now Bill has stage 4 cancer of the pancreas and liver. He’s at home, and his friends are caring from a distance as we are all in Covid-19 Stay at Home mode right now, and for the foreseeable future.

This nightmare experience is having a profound effect on the population. It will be difficult to recover from the death and devastation and the resulting changes in our everyday life. This is an election year, and it is also a Census year. The census is underway, and many of  us have filled out the forms on line. Everything is in limbo right now because the full extent and the outcomes of the scourge are not known. The virus is bringing out the worst in some and the best in others. Hatred and love are at opposite ends of the present life spectrum, and from the sidelines we watch emotions play out. Fear brings uncertainty and it can make people lash out at any target that is “other.” Feelings of helplessness and empathy manifest in neighbor helping neighbor as well as in acts of charity and generosity in other forms. The spirit that has shown itself in other national crises is still part of us if we give it a chance.