Of the many online stories I've been reading regarding the Coronavirus, some of the most interesting have been about how to survive living as shut-ins.
Other than the occasional trip to the store for essentials (and, no, I haven't been hoarding toilet paper), my wife and I have been doing what we can to abide by the social-distancing dictates. And so far it seems to be working.
Though, let's be honest here, it's still early yet.
Other than the health of those I love, though, I worry about local businesses. Especially those smaller businesses that depend on foot traffic. Not just the movie theaters such as The Magic Lantern or The Garland (as well as the chain groups) but the restaurants and coffee shops, etc.
And especially the bookstores. Unlike grocery and cannabis stores, which at this point seem to be doing landmark business, bookstores are in trouble. And that's especially true for one of Spokane's literary treasures, Auntie's Books.
In a personal message, I asked Auntie's owner John Waite what he needed. And he replied, "Just customers."
He also stressed that the store is still open, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. "And," he added, "we are doing mail order and curbside pickup."
Reading has helped us survive other national crises. Your local bookstores can help us get through this one, too.
Below: In 2018, owner John Waite helped celebrate the 40th anniversary of Auntie's Bookstore. May the store enjoy 40 more years.