So much has happened since I last wrote in this space, just a week ago. It’s difficult not to go into panic mode, but that is exactly what’s required of all of us. Surely not business as usual, for we are all asked to stay home and practice social distancing as this terrible COVID-19 virus towers over us. The importance of that is brought home to us in our cover story this week, “History Informs Us,” by Vince Farinaccio, who researched what occurred in 1918 when Philadelphia officials did not heed the advice of physicians concerned about the spread of the looming Spanish flu pandemic.
Also in this issue, we bring you a new feature, Community Update, started on the cover and continuing on pages 4 through 6. It is packed full of information and links to additional resources about the coronavirus. This week, it includes a message from City of Vineland Mayor Anthony Fanucci. It also includes an interview taped last Friday on our SNJ Today 99.9 FM, with Dawn Hunter, executive director of the Greater Vineland Chamber of Commerce. She has excellent advice for residents and business owners, as well as a personal story of how she keeps upbeat in these times.
Last week, I shared a few ideas about how to do just that. One idea, recommended by a mental health professional, is to get nostalgic. How about pulling out all those home movies or photo albums and sharing them with the younger ones in your household? Even grown children love seeing themselves as infants and youngsters, and the images are sure to bring laughter (i.e., endorphins) to all who watch. Maybe you can send some of the photos out digitally to family and friends.
Some other ideas for keeping busy and upbeat at home:
• Go online and complete your 2020 U.S. Census report,
• Bring out the board games,
• Involve the whole family in making a meal (or get creative yourself with a recipe online or the one on page 16),
• Start a puzzle, do a crossword (there’s one on page 19),
• Listen to some calming music and/or jam with some dance music,
• Read a book,
• Start your spring cleaning,
• Do your taxes online (I know, we now have until July 15 to file, but get it done while you have the time, especially if you’re getting a refund!).
And remember to stay healthy with good nutrition, vitamins, and exercise. The good news is that spring weather is almost upon us, so get outdoors and take a walk, go for a run, do some yoga. Listen to the birds and the spring peepers, behold the flowering magnolias and Bradford pears, the budding trees and green leaves unfolding as our outdoor world awakens around us.
Be well and keep the faith.