Good News Monday #13, cooks, house parties, libraries

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One quarter of 2020 is in the review mirror. Lent is in the past. Easter was yesterday. Everyone is alone in their homes. One of my daughters has COVID-19-like symptoms, but she can’t be tested because she not ill enough. The Health Department in my county is under court order to reveal the identities of confirmed COVID-19 individuals to the police. I never thought it would go this far. I never thought it would get this bad.

I admit, I had a hard time finding the good news this week. Yet I did.

On a local level: Libraries

Local libraries remain closed and their not collecting any loaned books. For that reason, you won’t get a fine. Whew!

Librarians still want to encourage reading, so they make themselves available while working remotely. You can still call and get recommendations or advice. You can still get a library card on-line. Most expanded their online audio book and e-book collections.

One library in my area offers on-line storytime for children. And you can watch another library’s saltwater fish online. Who doesn’t like to watch fish? Especially now.

I never thought of this, but a lot of people access the internet at the library. For that reason, some libraries offer “drive-in” WIFI. You can access the Internet from you car in the parking lot.

Even Little Free Library are closing due to COVID-19. Some converted to collection sites for dry and canned goods, donating the food to local food pantries.

Little Free Library is a non-profit that provides more than a thousand miniature libraries. Maybe you’ve seen one in your neighborhood.

On a personal note: An app for that

Mom hasn’t left her house in a month. This weekend, some of her kids, grandkids, and maybe some great-grandkids “shared” Easter dinner via HouseParty.

House Party

It’s not social distancing when you’re on Houseparty, it’s physical distancing. Stay home and stay safe.

from the app store

I got on with a sister, a niece, a grand-daughter, and Mom. What fun! I’m still learning how to navigate. You can play games like Trivia, Guacamole and Chips, and others. I can’t wait to challenge someone to Trivia.

José Andrés’s World Central Kitchen

I remember José from Hurricane Maria. He’s the world-renowned chef that stepped in to feed people during the crisis. Not just nutritional food. Top-notch high-end restaurant food. José did it again when the Grand Princess cruise ship lingered outside of San Francisco.

José knows how to train people to prepare and serve food in a sanitary way. He knows how to prepare food for many, many people. That’s why he knew he could do it for people in need.

Andrés is a lesson of leadership in crisis. In a catastrophe in which the response of the U.S. government has been slow, muddled and unsure, his kitchen models the behavior—nimble, confident, proactive—the general public needs in a crisis (and, so far, has provided it more reliably than the federal government)

Time Magazine (Read more here)

While I wrote, I got a message that one of my former colleagues, who I’ve known for several decades, committed suicide. That erased all the positive vibes I had going. He was such a nice guy, so friendly, a loving father and wife. I am beside myself.

I am reminded of an article I read this week by Dr. Jessie Stuart. The best words of comfort are words of empathy, such as “I can only imagine how scared you’re feeling right now…” Dr. Stuart’s article was meant to help us be more empathetic during the pandemic. He reminds us that saying things like, “at least you have a job,” or “at least you’re weren’t diagnosed with a horrible disease,” is unhelpful.

I hope I have a chance to say something to my friend’s family. Something helpful. Something empathetic. I could use a few words like that myself.

That’s it for my good news this week. Please share whatever good news you have this week.