A person holds a smartphone, whose screen reflects colorful lights

Yesterday, there were fewer cars at the Arrivals dock at the Portland airport
than there were dogs being walked on my block.

Yesterday, a friend reported a clandestine meeting—a walk with her elderly mother—careful to keep a six-foot distance as they strolled together in the sunshine.

Yesterday, schools were closed, and bars, and restaurants. We no longer gather, laughing, in bustling crowds of strangers who might become friends.

But today, people in Italy sang together out their balconies. Meals on Wheels drivers put bags of food on doorknobs, backed up six feet, and waited to see if the seniors were okay.

Today, the technology that we swore was killing our relationships—those phones our youth sink into, ignoring the world in front of them—is saving us. Letting us gather, see one another’s faces.

Tomorrow, fewer people will sicken and die if we keep our distance today. Imagine if all difficult choices had such clear and obvious results—

And then living as if they do.