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Time to help each other

An eerie feeling has engulfed Maui County with usually busy Front Street empty like a ghost town, benches plastic wrapped at the banyan tree in Lahaina and fewer cars on the road.

This is all thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Very few, if any, visitors are arriving. Earlier this week, air traffic to Maui was down more than 90 percent. The county’s largest resorts, like the Grand Wailea and the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort & Spa in Kaanapali, have shut down.

Behind the eeriness is worry and stress about catching the disease and about how to make ends meet. Most of the island appears to be following the governor’s and mayor’s call to stay at home and to work from home. There really isn’t anything to do, except maybe swim, surf and paddleboard — while maintaining social distancing — with most parks and facilities shutdown.

There have been examples of selfishness in buying up more than you need of items like toilet paper, rice, hand sanitizer, hand wipes, face masks. That’s left people scrambling to find these items and forced the county to issue an advisory to flush only toilet paper, not other wipes, lest we plug up our sewer system.

There have been examples of goodness too, people banding together to help the elderly and people with disabilities with food and drug runs and businesses setting up kupuna time and delaying loan payments.

These are not times for panic, but for banding together to help one another as a community.

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