Nature brings South Carolinians comfort during coronavirus outbreak

Nature brings South Carolinians comfort during coronavirus outbreak

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - While some of our regular Sunday routines change amid social distancing and executive orders, the gates at local parks remain open for people to enjoy nature.

Our Joe Gorchow explored a pair of local trails. He discovers how sunshine, coupled with good weather, helps boost spirits within our community.

“I think it’s just great to be able to go outside and enjoy nature,” said Tammy Dodge.

At Columbia Riverfront Park, Dodge, from West Columbia, enjoys the sights and sounds from the trail. She also loves the optimism from people on the path.

"I do appreciate the kindness and everyone being hopeful," Dodge added.

Social interaction with friends is what many people miss the most.

“It’s hard to deal with all of this,” said Ashley, a student at the University of South Carolina. “To not be able to go talk with your friends and go meet up with people. You take it for granted.”

“It’s a huge change for all of us,” added her girlfriend, Brittany.

Gorchow's next landing spot takes us to Harbison Lake in Columbia.

The calmness of the lake is what we all strive to find within our daily lives.

William, from North Carolina, is in Columbia to help his family care for his mother and sister. Both require full-time assistance within the home. His mother has Parkinson’s disease, while his sister has Multiple Sclerosis.

The situation weighs on William. He draws on his life experience to help handle the unknown with the virus and the fear of uncertainty.

"After being in the military, I can handle anything," added William.

A positive outlook sinks in for William and others when gliding on the trail at Harbison.

“Thinking everything is going to get better in time,” said Demotrious, a Columbia resident.

“We may have to walk on the opposite side of the sidewalk or speak to each other,” Columbia resident Roxanne Wells said. “At least that does bring the normalcy back to it.”

None of us truly knows what the immediate future holds in our community, state, and country. What’s evident today, from the people Gorchow spoke with, is that spirits remain upbeat with what we do have, and what we can do, in this time of crisis.

Copyright 2020 WIS. All rights reserved.