What a week — We adjust to a new normal as we shelter in place    

The reality is setting in. As our favorite coffee shops and stores sit dark. As friends and coworkers are laid off. As store shelves sit empty after a buying frenzy. As elective medical procedures are canceled. As we see the stark images from around the globe flick across our TV screens 24/7. What is to be our fate?

There is a palpable change in the air this week. There is so much about COVID-19 that is still unknown, but what is known scares us. The virus can spread before a person even has a symptom. The symptoms can be mild, but they can also bring a strong person to their knees. Enough people have recovered to recount their stories. “It hit me like a freight train,” has been used more than once.

It’s been a little shocking that we as a nation were so unprepared. Books will be written, but for now we want to look forward to see what can be done. It’s encouraging that private corporations are stepping up to provide our frontline medical personnel with the personal protection equipment they so desperately need. Doctors and nurses go to work each day knowing they are the most vulnerable to contracting the virus. In Italy, where the death toll continues to surge, at least 14 doctors have died.

What can we do? Do what the governor has told us to do. Stay home. Don’t interact with others as much as possible. Only go out for necessities. That’s not a lot to ask. We aren’t being asked to march off to war; we are being asked to stay home. As of this writing there have been no confirmed cases in Lassen County. But the sad reality is, that by the time there is a confirmed case, it will be too late. That individual will already have come into contact with others, and those people will have infected others, too. That’s how this works. The only way to break that cycle is to isolate as much as possible and to practice not just good sanitation, but great sanitation. Wash your hands. Don’t touch your face. Wash all surfaces. When you bring products into your home, wash them off. Wipe your bags off with Clorox wipes or wash them in the laundry with hot water.

We sympathize with small businesses; we are one. We have had to make changes here and aren’t sure how many more will have to be made. In the meantime we will do all we can to keep you informed. We are continually updating our website, lassennews.com, with the latest information.

If you have any questions you want answered, email swilliams@lassennews.com and we will do our best to get you that information.