The virus that rages outside has come to Pine Street. It has the attention of all our Pine Street regulars.
Douglas is in the hospital, and Louise calls him daily, as she is not allowed to visit. Leo is staying at Allison’s green house, while Allison stays with her parents, caring for them in their fragile health. Kassandra helps keep the coffee shop going with delivery and take-out, and keeps up with her art. David has resolved to be a better human being, and Sasha’s brokenness is about to erupt into something completely different.
Franny watches them all from her window overlooking their beloved town, considering what Marilyn would say.
“This too shall pass,” perhaps. Or: “Staying home? That’s all we have to do? Sounds like heaven.” Or, more likely: “This is our chance, Franny. Our chance to change everything.”
“What do you mean?” Franny asks Marilyn’s ghost. She might murmur it, or ask it out loud – it doesn’t matter, as the streets beneath her window, open to catch the warm spring air, are nearly empty of anyone who might overhear. “This is awful, Marilyn. People are sick. We are going to lose friends, family members. Our hospitals can’t keep up. Our communities will hurt. How is this our chance?”
“Disruption, you see, dear. Disruption is both the fear and the opportunity. We must rethink everything we believed, challenge our assumptions, move beyond our comfort zones.”
Franny sighs, believing she feels a warm hand on her arm, offering the comforting touch that no one real can give at this time. “I don’t like disruption, Marilyn. I don’t like being afraid all the time.”
“No one does, Franny. That’s the whole secret. No one likes this. And so, we are all moved to change it. Can you imagine? Thousands, millions of people around the world all focusing on change. The energy this will generate…”
“I don’t know. It’s so hard.” Franny realizes she is weeping, weeping for her town, her friends, herself. Weeping for the world.
“Yes, it’s hard. Don’t get me wrong, dear. I am not saying this is a good thing. I’m only saying, here we are. Let’s rise to the occasion. Let’s take a chance on changing everything. Do you see any other option?”
No, Franny thinks. No, I don’t see any other option.