Editor Hilary Berg s new  office  view from her home at Roots Vineyard.

In It Together

Weathering the current storm

By Hilary Berg

As I sit here writing this letter, my view has changed in more ways than one. Instead of my office cubicle, I’m looking out my window at home. Vines line the landscape while stormy spring clouds hang over it. Just a minute ago, it was pouring rain, but the deluge has stopped, momentarily. I know more moisture is coming, but I’ll savor any breaks as they come.

As the weather transforms before my eyes, I am reminded how much has changed in a matter of weeks here in Oregon and around the world. The novel coronavirus has ground our planet to a halt.

Many businesses, large and small, have temporarily closed, leaving workers wageless, products (and services) shelved and the markets nose-diving amid all the fear.

But the panic is not an overreaction as we watch the news reports of Italy’s unprecedented deaths and New York’s growing crisis. Clearly, social distancing — staying home — is essential in order to give our hospitals a fighting chance.

So we pause “life as we know it” to protect the most vulnerable: healthcare workers, the elderly, those with comprised health systems and others. Human life trumps money. Period.

We will stymie the virus eventually, but, in the meantime, small businesses are falling ill themselves. Surviving the economic mess will require government aid, for sure, but you can help, too.

Buying wine doesn’t take priority over, say, food and toilet paper — if you can find it — but it’s also not simply wine. When you buy a bottle, you are supporting community. If we are all going to weather this storm, we have to be mindful of our purchases, making them count when possible. Small businesses need you, and thank you for any support.

And, just like that, the rain is back and so is the whipping wind.

Like they say, the one constant in this world is change, which gives me hope for the near future. These hardships are temporary; we just have to get through it together.



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