Editor’s note: This piece is the first in a planned set of exchanges between local journalists in Warwick, Rhode Island, and Warwick, England, during the COVID-19 crisis.
These are, indeed, unprecedented times, which means we are all learning to cope with the ever-changing situation as it unfolds in front of us.
Yes, people are scared but it is the uncertainty that breeds fear. Will life ever be the same again? When will we be able to wander about Warwick’s beautiful town centre, St. Nicholas park and historic castle with a feeling of freedom?
But there have been many rainbows – quite literally in some cases. Youngsters’ drawings of rainbows in their windows is a nationwide movement which is designed to bring hope. And such initiatives have spurred on great movements.
While some have had to close, other businesses in Warwick and across the Warwick district have changed and adapted in order to survive. Many now deliver to your door, others deliver to your car. Leftover stock is going to charity and a huge army of volunteers have emerged across the town to cook and deliver food to the most vulnerable. Our paper and website is full of individual stories of heroism and acts of kindness.
There is one thing I am sure about in all this uncertainty. Things will never be the same again once this is over (and it will be over one day) but that might be for the better. Air pollution is down, people are looking out for each other and the community is united – only a few months ago, the country was still bitterly divided over Brexit with no sign of a truce.
Warwick has an older population and a hospital in the town that serves a wide area. COVID-19 cases are coming and we will all grieve for the dead. Yet everyone is helping our health heroes in the NHS and applauding them from our doorsteps and balconies. They have become the new “super heroes'” and that cannot be forgotten when things return to “normal.”
Phil Kibble is the Leamington Spa Courier’s head of news for Warwickshire, Leicestershire and Oxfordshire.