Friday 11 December 2020

The world is not closed

To all the world

It is the last call for boarding a flight to Cairo, as people are also taking their seats to fly out to Bogota and Beirut. Going by most of 2020, you might think the world has closed and then you realise that even as we have been careful, closeted, and maybe considerate or just in the quest of self-preservation, people have been going about their lives and travelling long distances too.

Ocean cruises are probably not fashionable in these pandemic times as it appears to be a super-spreader vehicle of late. A cruise to nowhere from Singapore had to abandon the escapade when someone came down with Covid-19 symptoms.

Looking up at the flight schedule, Montreal, Tokyo, Nairobi, Manchester, Buenos Aires, Mauritius, Libreville, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Djibouti, Johannesburg, Santiago, it is like everyone is flying to all corners of the world, though I cannot help but note that for the rest of today, there are no flights to the United States of America. A dangerous place to go if the pandemic deaths are taken into consideration.

A ride that tried

If anything, we need the world to heal and revive, we need the ingenuity of our humanity to begin to put this pandemic behind us. Obviously, the vaccine will help, but we also need to be careful rather than carefree and careless. I have worn a mask for hours and thankfully I have straps to take the strain off my ears.

The Uber driver that took me to the airport was a Dutchman of Arabic ancestry, we had quite a good conversation, but somehow, he had convinced himself that the pandemic was 20% threat and 80% hoax. You can go and tell that to the 1.5 million people who started 2020 with us and are no more. Apparently, some doctors he picked up from the airport had winked and suggested governments were overreacting and enjoying the trammelling of our rights.

Like honestly?

Even worse, he opined that the elderly who are more affected are really being exterminated because of their cost to society in healthcare and pensions. I was not ready to engage in such a stupid conspiracy theory, I glibly said, we would eventually learn the truth of this pandemic. There was no point trying to point out that hundreds of health workers had lost their lives caring for others, it was not just an ordinary day at work for them.

The code remains, avoid crowds, close contact and closed spaces, get used to the face mask and as much as possible, socially distance yourself from others. For all the comforts and conveniences of technology, we still need to travel, meet people, see loved ones and find ways to make life a little better in the midst of difficult circumstances.

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