Orange Coast shares stories of how people in our county connected and coped in the early days of COVID-19: tales from the helpers and heroes, tips for surviving stay-at-home orders, shifts local businesses made to adapt, advice going forward, and a community displaying hope and resolve. You’ll find plenty of reasons to be proud of where we live and how we’re rising together.
“I normally travel almost every weekend playing at corporate events, private parties, and dueling piano bars,” says San Clemente resident Lark Knowles. “Then all of a sudden in a matter of two days my whole schedule just disappeared. I live in a great community here in San Clemente. It was St. Patrick’s Day, and I just thought I’d roll my piano outside and see what happens. The first song I did was ‘Come to My Window’ by Melissa Etheridge and then I did some Disney songs for the kids and some songs I know from experience that are unifying like ‘Hey Jude’ and ‘Don’t Stop Believing.’ People slowly started to emerge and grabbed blankets and chairs and sat on their own driveways. My neighbor Karen Joyce recorded me live on Facebook and the video has about 14,000 shares so far. I had no idea I’d get this kind of response; I just thought it would be nice for my neighbors. I’m swamped responding to the nicest messages I’ve ever received in my life. They’re coming from Australia, Missouri, everywhere. People are thanking me, but I’m like, ‘No, thank you!’ Before this I couldn’t sleep for like five nights. But I’m so uplifted by the celebration that music brings. It was something really moving to me, and it’s given me focus.”
Read more from this issue at orangecoast.com/together.