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Some thoughts on the Coronavirus isolation

"Remember when the Titanic was sinking and the band continued to play?…
Well, we're the band."

thepantiles on Instagram

The world is well into weeks of "social distancing". It's a poor phrase to describe what we're trying to do, but it's the best we have, it seems. But we're learning to cope. There's a quote often misattributed to Theodore Roosevelt, “Do what you can, with what you’ve got, where you are”. It seems that's what people are doing from their homes, and from their hearts.

Look everywhere. People are reaching out to help others. There's a coffee roastery in San Francisco who are sending care packages to healthcare workers. There's a coffee house in New York who are taking coffee out to the vulnerable. There's a sandwich shop taking soup to the homeless in San Antonio,TX. Look on YouTube. People are reaching out with fun things to help those of us confined in our bunkers. Someone sent me a picture of a postman in England who's dressing up every day to deliver the mail. There are people calling their neighbours to check up on them and offering to run errands.

I read of a place that held a sort of street party, with people sitting at their front doors, eating and drinking and calling their neighbours. Someone played music. Another had delivered scones to every doorstep. A third went out into the street and danced for everyone.

At the farmers' markets, we see people coming in with lists of things they're getting for neighbours and friends. One woman came in to get a bag of salad mix for each of the residents in a local retirement community. One of our customers is making fun face masks for the vendors. The list goes on.

The tiny little corner shop five miles up the valley from me is offering credit for people who are struggling. Often the people in better financial positions are leaving a few dollars every time they shop, to help others. Another chap is driving forty minutes to the nearest big town to pick up things for people, three times a week. Yet others are chipping in for his petrol money.

People are generally not just good, not merely decent, but are awesome. You are awesome, and so am I.

I have a really simple yoga exercise for you. I used to tell my students this one at the end of a hard day.

It begins with you raising your dominant hand way over your head. Stretch it up as high as it will go, with your bicep pressed to your ear. Then keep your elbow up and relax your forearm. It should fall naturally between your shoulders. Touch between your shoulder blades. (When you're giving other people this exercise, have them close their eyes now.)

Now pat yourself on the back. Because you deserve it.

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