Denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance – otherwise known as five widely recognized stages of grief. Make no mistake, our pandemic world is mourning disruption of life as we know it. So where are you? Personally, denial and anger expired days before losing my job, bargaining served no purpose. Unemployment was met with pragmatic inevitability. So where am I a week after realizing I had no job? No indication when life might return to normal, no assurance employment insurance benefits could arrive in timely fashion? Have to admit I’m depressed.
A fight between rival gangs of monkeys in Lopburi Province, Thailand delivered another global pandemic reality. In the pre-COVID-19 world, throngs of monkey feeding tourists kept peace between city and temple simians separated by a railroad track. Gang warfare driven by starvation ensues when absence of tourists obliterate their primary food source. A local shopkeeper captured this brawl over a single piece of food. –
This time last week it was business as usual, tonight I’m applying for unemployment insurance benefits. Cheerful optimism fell laughably short of calculating the impact of COVID-19 on my livelihood. Corporate client cancellations started trickling in seven days ago. Come Wednesday a swanky event at Science World cancelled with less than 24 hours notice. The following day cancellation notice came moments before guest arrival. Seems coronavirus concerns outweighed $12,000 invoice for calling it quits on the spot. I sent staff home with assurance they’d be paid for time and inconvenience. Yesterday, end of business concluded with notice all venues, universities, conferences and corporate meetings were cancelled until April 30th. As of yesterday I’m a hospitality causality of COVID-19.
Time to buckle down. Went shopping today, grocery store shelves were stripped of canned goods, meat, frozen vegetables, bread and cold/flu medication. Being a workaholic I’ll need time to adjust. On the upside my kitchen needs a fresh coat of paint – looks like I’ll have time to polish my nest.
Coronavirus serves as a cautionary tale of human fragility. Humanity fancies itself impervious to unforeseen whims of nature. So certain our lofty tower is made of stone, we dismiss sudden onset of unprecedented hairline fractures as media hype. COVID-19 began as an outbreak in Wuhan, China. In medical terms outbreak is defined as disease infecting a lot of people in one area in a short amount of time. Next, outbreak became epidemic. Epidemic is when cases of illness in a community or region clearly exceed normal expectancy. Today the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic. Epidemic passes into pandemic territory when illness spreads to other countries and continents affecting a large number of people. Infected persons returning from travel to known epidemic regions don’t factor in pandemic consideration. Pandemic waits for widespread community transmission, local transmission of infection without connection to travel.
Hindsight doesn’t care what we should or could have done to stop hairline fracture outbreak before epidemic cracks formed pandemic fissures. Who knows, maybe next time we’ll recognize imperatives to act responsibly at outbreak. That said, today we have a pandemic so lets get it over with. Close borders, ground planes, cancel public gatherings, legislate global forgiveness of debt/living expenses for a month, restrict commerce to essential services, stay home from work and school and designate billions toward social assistance. Stop messing around, let’s get this over with.
Shout out to my friend Tony for sharing a mirth worthy snippet. So silly, so true and so what I needed to shake off oppressive Trump worms –
Despite WHO (World Health Organization) assurance of no existing evidence to suggest pets can be infected with COVID-19, reports out of China illustrate a alarming level of public hysteria. Contrary to WHO’s position, spokesman Li Lanjuan of China’s national health commission said – “If pets go out and have contact with an infected person, they have the chance to get infected. By then, pets need to be isolated. In addition to people, we should be careful with other mammals especially pets.”
Surely I’m not alone in scratching my head over these images. It’s acceptable to serve whole bats and live mouse soup in high end restaurants, but when disease crosses the species barrier it’s time to walk masked kitty on a leash?