VASA, Minn. — I had planned to go to Chicago on Friday, March 20. When I heard the train whistle while working at the kitchen table I noticed it was even a couple minutes early. I had a voucher.

I did go to my chiropractor appointment in Cannon Falls. There was time to drive by a church I like halfway between here and there. I thought I might stop back again later, maybe sit on the top step and enjoy the view.

Arriving a few minutes early, I sat on a sunny bench for a moment by the ice cream store, then checked email before leaving my cellphone in the car. A group I’m tangentially connected with was suggesting everyone take a moment to pray at 3 p.m. that day.

The chiropractor's office had good public health protocols in place: hang your jacket right by the door, don’t bring anything else in, hand sanitizer. I was shown a few more exercises — simple, subtle but deliberate pull back and turn moves from a neutral position to relieve the pressure on an abnormality that’s developed.

Driving back, meandering on gravel roads, raising a few fingers off the steering wheel when I passed somebody I listened to the radio. Happened to hear a local politician talking and thought, “I hope I voted for him.” When he said, “Governance isn’t about hope — it’s about planning.” I found that incredibly hopeful. He listed off a few things that were working well and some good ideas. He clarified the need for healthcare capacity because there would still be gallbladders attacked, bones broken and babies born. Good point. He mentioned variables and sequences and data and common sense.

A few miles farther, at 3, I stepped into a large open area off of a parking lot with a great view of the river valley, fumbled for a prayer mantra and eventually just enjoyed the feel of the sun.