Coronavirus changes the way we live

By Lynnette Hoffman

Coronavirus changes the way we live

Donna's Place put in a walk-up window to serve their customers.

It's hard to believe that a virus has changed the way we live today, but it has. Many of us had never heard of the coronavirus, the virus that would stop us in our tracks. Washington is not under a "stay at home" order yet, but if people don't take it seriously, we could be next.

When we first heard of the virus, it was something that was not affecting us here, it was mainly in China. Then, in no time, we had our first case in the United States, not just in the USA, but in our own state, Washington. As we continued to watch the news, Washington became the hotbed of the virus it appeared. Now, there are deaths associated with the virus in our state and the number is climbing.

Several states have stay at home orders, this means you can only go out for your essential needs such as groceries and medication, to date 5 states are under this order. Washington is not one of the states, but one city in our state is. Everett Washington is now on a "stay at home" order by the mayor. Cities can make their own laws during the virus, Everett was one that did.

Businesses that are closed are considered "non essential" businesses, such as sit down restaurants but take out is available. Beauty salons, health clubs, and theaters and other businesses that are service oriented are also closed. How is this all affecting us locally though?

Local restaurants are doing their best to serve the communities. Donna's Place in Toledo has changed to take out only, she has added a take out window to her building. The Crowded Kitchen offered fair food as their take out menu over the weekend. Betty's Place and Chimi's in Toledo continue to offer take out as does Plaza Jalisco and Napavine Grill in Napavine. This is going to be a tough time for our local restaurants, take out is the best way to help them.

Several service oriented businesses are not open, beauty salons and some retail stores are closed under Governor Inslee's orders. This means your hairstylist is not getting paid and she is self employed, remember them when the ban is lifted.

Our local grocery stores have been hit hard, people have been panic buying many items. This group of hard working people are making sure you and I have what we need. When they get a shipment, they immediately have to stock the shelves because the shelves are bare. They are working tirelessly to make sure we have what we need. Take a minute to thank each one of them, they are on the front lines, exposed to everything just to keep food on our tables.

Governor Inslee spoke regarding closing public places, such as restaurants, "These are very difficult decisions, but hours count here and very strong measures are necessary to slow the spread of the virus. I know there will be significant economic impacts to all our communities and we are looking at steps to help address those challenges." The economic impact will be felt for months.

As we continue to watch this virus spread, the hope is that citizens will socially distance themselves by 6 feet, use sanitizers and wash hands.

At press time, Washington had 1793 cases with 94 deaths. Nationally, 27,031 cases have been confirmed with 349 deaths (source worldometer). In order to stop this virus from impacting more people, please consider social distancing and personal hygiene, for your older loved ones.