Breaking News
More () »

Portland's Leading Local News: Weather, Traffic, Sports and more | Portland, Oregon | KGW.com

Washington phased reopening on indefinite hold

KGW's Tim Gordon checks in with his own neighborhood in Vancouver, Wash., where phased reopening has been suspended indefinitely during the COVID-19 pandemic.

VANCOUVER, Wash. — It’s before noon where I live just north of Vancouver, and COVID-19 cases have been on the rise. It’s still not too hot to walk. We quickly ran into my neighbors.

Jana Hart is a music teacher and director of the Vancouver Master Chorale. She’s out of work for now but supports the governor's moves.

"I appreciate Jay Inslee a lot because it started here, and we could have been New York so easily. I feel like people take it seriously here too, I really do," said Hart.

RELATED: Freeze on counties reopening in Washington extended indefinitely

We also talked to a landscaping crew, putting down new turf. Owner Jaime Olvera's young son has been on the job with him this summer. He wonders if his 6-year-old will be going to school in September. Olvera said it's already tough for younger kids who want to go places.

"They don’t know what’s going on and how do we explain it to them," said Olveras. "It’s hard when they say ‘we want to go here’ and we say no. It’s tricky, so it’s been rough you know."

Of course, many businesses are open, but under restrictions.

Early on in the pandemic, we visited the Woodin' You Pampered Paws pet supply store near me. Pampered Paws was doing online, curbside and delivery-- but nobody in the store.

Now, they can have a limited number. They’re doing what they can, stuck at Phase 2.

"Customers have been thankful to come in the store, there have been some that don't want to come back and are still having us deliver and doing curbside," said owner Amy Krcek. "So we're just happy to accommodate however customers want to shop."

Back on my street, it's amazing what you learn, talking to your neighbors. A woman I’d said hello to many times stopped to talk.

"My grandmother died in the 1918 pandemic … yes, and my mother survived," said Elfriede Samy

With that in her history, Samy and her husband are taking all of the precautions for COVID-19.

"You know until we have a vaccine, hopefully we’ll be OK," she said. "We’re doing fine; we enjoy our home, we have a nice backyard which we enjoy and use, and my credit card bill is way down."

There are some upsides to an otherwise difficult time.

RELATED: As Washington delays reopening, Clark County sees rise in COVID-19