The coronavirus story is far from over, and it’s almost certain that things will get worse before they start getting better.

“Worse” in this case means many things: More people infected with the virus, perhaps or probably some in this part of the state; more people listening to warnings to be careful, wash their hands and keep their distance from everyone else; and less of the vibrant commerce that keeps America running.

Nevertheless, the good-natured people of this country, along with those around the world whose lives have been disrupted by the coronavirus, already are coming up with some clever replacements for their routine activities that have been halted.

In Italy, opera singers, musicians and disc jockeys have won wide praise from their neighbors for performances from their balconies. Videos of the events are surreal, with empty streets and onlookers crowded onto their balconies, applauding and cheering.

Here in the U.S. the trend of “video happy hours” among friends who for the time being are not able to get together has taken hold. One of the drinks of choice cleverly has been christened the quarantini.

There are stories of people struggling to cope with isolation receiving extra attention from a distance. Perhaps most heartening are reports of growing networks of people willing to help the elderly and others with tasks like grocery shopping so that they can be safe at home.

Things will get worse for us. But upbeat vignettes like those are a reminder that we will get through this. The virus that could destroy smiles and kindness does not exist.

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