By Ralphine Major

No fans?  What is March Madness without fans!

It has never happened before.  The long-awaited basketball tournament games will be played this year with no fans in the stands.  The unprecedented move is a testament to the seriousness of the Coronavirus that has been declared a global pandemic.

Every year, people prepare for the deadly flu season.  I remember the anxiety the Hong Kong flu caused in 1968.  The Coronavirus, known as COVID-19, has prompted colleges to have classes online rather than in person.  It has caused some schools to close.  Major corporations are requiring employees to  work at home when possible.  Upcoming community events and music festivals have been canceled or postponed.  Despite all the advances in the medical field and modern technology, there is no sure method to prevent the virus.  According to many in the health care industry, the best line of defense remains the simple act of washing one’s hands.  Twenty seconds of hand washing, often to the tune of “Happy Birthday,” should help keep us healthy.  One nurse told me they use “Rocky Top” to cover the twenty-second rule.  That should work well for Tennessee fans!

Amid the Coronavirus chaos, today I will look back at a simple scene of the flowering dogwood and look forward to a day in spring when new life flourishes.  As we navigate these unchartered waters with COVID-19, I will take comfort in knowing that the Creator of the dogwood and all things beautiful still controls the universe in which we live.