CORONAVIRUS  We’re all coping with the changes

The OBSERVER's view

What a difference one week makes. Last weekend, residents here could gather in a large crowd to celebrate the “Small Business Revolution” in Fredonia. They could turn on their television sets and watch sporting events.

Even at the State University of New York at Fredonia, all was calm.

Then came Wednesday afternoon, when the novel coronavirus became serious. It began with state Gov. Andrew Cuomo calling for more distance-learning offerings at the SUNY and City University schools. Later that day, Ivy League schools began canceling spring sports.

Wednesday evening was the biggest shocker. The National Basketball Association season was being halted due to a player — now two — being diagnosed with the virus. Actor Tom Hanks within the next hour disclosed he and his wife also were affected.

All life-altering events within less than 12 hours.

So here we are today. Our lives — at home and on the outside — have been turned upside down with no timetable for when things will be back to normal.

We cannot fix that. But we can pay attention to some other items that we normally do not find the time to accomplish. We can read a book. Clean that closet that is stuffed with items. Start cleaning the garage.

Those are minor examples, but we do need to keep busy — all while maintaining safe and healthy habits. As Dennis Hefner, interim SUNY Fredonia president, noted in one of his communications to the student body. We are in “unchartered waters.”

So take a deep breath. This too shall pass. We just do not know how soon.


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