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May 11, 2020

Yesterday afternoon, as Louie worked on Mother’s Day dinner, Jacqueline and I escaped for a girls’ social distancing sight-seeing drive around Pasadena’s picturesque Rose Bowl area. We called it our “Helen Reddy/I Am Woman” tour complete with freshly percolated coffee and tangy “lemon-ups” Girl Scout cookies “baked with inspiring messages to lift your spirits.”

And as the world turns, all eyes are on reopening economies. But some countries that have already lifted lockdown mandates -- like Germany and China – are seeing new cases of coronavirus pop up. Great.

But there is hope: If everyone accepts that Covid-19 will be around for a while and if everyone accepts face masks as part of our daily attire (like underwear) -- chances are extremely high that “…infections can plummet.” It’s working in Japan where they don’t even have lockdowns. People are riding the subways and going to karaoke bars -- but they all wear masks and are keenly responsible about social distancing.

Even urban planning is adapting to changing times. By the end of May, Seattle in Washington state will permanently close 20 miles of streets to through traffic in order to make way for “Stay Healthy Streets.” The transformed space will allow for residents to social distance while taking walks and bicycling around town. Yes, change is hard. And our brains tell us there really isn’t a choice. A headline for another article I read about masks echoes in my brain:

“Just wear the damn mask.”

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