NROP: Love in the Time of Cholera or How to live through Coronavirus.

I do not say this very often,

but drastic times call for drastic measures –

this blog is hereby announced ‘Safe Space.’

You can come over and read at your leisure without worrying about the infection. There are no handshakes here. The only human interaction is through the comments and those go through many layers of disinfection. So go ahead and make this blog your oasis. Rest in the shade of a palm tree as long as you want. If you read one post a day, you should have enough reading material for a year and a half (and that is not counting new/upcoming content.) Unlike other places, I am NOT shutting down. The show must go on!

From various chats throughout the past week, I know that a lot of you (like me) went to the store to grab a few regular things and found the stores half-empty. No matter how serious this virus is, people are overreacting. Will you really need a million rolls of paper? Do you really need to get into an altercation because of it? With St. Patrick’s Day right around the corner (tomorrow), many people celebrated it this past weekend. With their houses filled to the brim with toilet paper, they stood in lines to get inside crowded bars. How is it that people are cautious about some things but not others? If you are petrified, stay home and do not go out. If you think all of this is blown out of proportion, then be my guest and travel to the most popular tourist destinations, shake hands with everyone, and drink beer from the same glass as others. Whichever camp you are in, be consistent. Otherwise, you look bipolar. (Yes, I know bipolar disorder is something else and is a serious condition, but I am an artist and sometimes use words creatively.)

While I am not much of a huger, I definitely am a handshake kind of person. It stems more from my upbringing and societal norms rather than from my need to touch people. As much as I enjoy good company, I dislike bad company. Times like now enable us to be slightly antisocial without being labeled ‘weirdo,’ ‘rude,’ or ‘recluse.’ I cannot say that I have anything to complain about. In normal circumstances, I find that not everyone respects personal space. If I can smell what you had for lunch, you are standing too close to my face. Please move. Why is it that anything needs to be said? Should it not be common sense? Apparently, NOW people are keeping their distance. Six feet seems to be the golden rule. That is as close to my comfort zone as it is going to get so I intend on appreciating it. But why is it that we wait until a health crisis to do so? Why does it take a pandemic for people to start washing their hands? My hope is that once this blows over, whenever it does, that we will KEEP on washing our hands routinely and will respect other people’s personal space.

Have you heard about the ‘Donut Guy?’ A man in Italy cut out a piece of cardboard six feet in diameter and then a hole in the middle, and then wore it outside. Some people call him a hero for raising social distancing awareness. Can I wear such a donut all year long? Italy is on lock-down, which means that many places are shut down (restaurants, pubs, and most stores). Those that stay open must guarantee one meter between customers (which is around 3.5 feet). If you want to leave your house, you have to print out a form from the government’s website and fill it out. Once outside, you can be stopped and your form reviewed. If your matter is not urgent enough or if you are found outside without a note, you face the potential of getting fined or even going to jail.

It is not all doom and gloom, though. Multiple communities in Italy have gone viral over the weekend when videos of them singing on balconies were posted on social media. I have to admit that it is pretty entertaining. Somehow, people managed to turn these dark times into an opportunity to socialize (and still keep their distance!). While some citizens sing, others play instruments.

“In the flat in front of me, a couple with a small child appeared,” he said. “The mother carried him in her arms while the father played a children’s musical toy. They waved over at us and we waved back. We’ve never met.” – a quote by Matteo Colombi

He also mentioned that he witnessed two elderly ladies beating out rhythms with the use of cookware. People who have never exchange words with each other before are now smiling and waving to one another across the street. The idea is bound to warm even the coldest of hearts. It is a wonderful display of solidarity. While these people are apart/isolated, they are also together in a way.

P.S. There will probably be a lot of Christmas babies this year.

Is your area particularly affected by the virus?

What precautions do you take to stay healthy?

Have you learned anything from this health crisis?

What would you do if you had to stay home for the next couple of weeks?

Stay golden,

SGK signature.png.

***

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70 thoughts on “NROP: Love in the Time of Cholera or How to live through Coronavirus.

Add yours

  1. I’d like the doughnut guy, I think. Like you, I have a large personal bubble. Social distancing is also my default. These are, however, very interesting times. It’s funny to see everyone jump on my “no hug” bandwagon. “Out there” is a little surreal. I shop once a week, on Sundays. The difference between last week and yesterday was remarkable. Good thing I didn’t want red meat. Or a container of the coffee I like. Or anything paper related. Luckily, I eat outside the norm so I wasn’t too affected, cereal preference aside.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. It’s insane. I swear no one in this country but me works anymore. I had Friday off, went to the store… barely found any parking space. Shelves empty, carts overflowing. People looked at me like I was crazy when I came to the register with a handful of items.
      Stay golden!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m not super social, but the few things I do have been affected (going to restaurants, for example). I am surprised that people apparently have NOT been washing their hands with soap or cleaning their homes. Suddenly, they’ve discovered Lysol? Geez. I’ve always had it around. I am totally fine without hugs and random touching, which is a thing I prefer to avoid in the best of times 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  3. My job requires me to come to work. I Tweeted and Instagrammed a pic of a virtually empty Office. I don’t have to worry about someone standing too close. Washing my hands daily is nothing new, so that routine stays the same.

    Getting cleaning products and bathroom paper is a problem since I didn’t stock up and only took my normal amount… before the stores ran out. The big giant Amazon was out of stock also. I’ve decided not to listen to the media. If I want any information on the virus, I will call the local CDC for updates in my area, and take this problem one day at a time.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Ha! I was telling my mom yesterday there was going to be a baby pandemic by the end of the year. I didn’t hear about the doughnut man, but that’s smart. I’m the weirdo, the recluse, and am agoraphobic to boot, so the only difference for me is the kids at home all the time. Stay safe!

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Hopefully something good may come out of all this panic. People in my area are joining groups to help vulnerable people most at risk by getting shopping for them. Air pollution in locked down areas has decreased significantly. There is a ban (albeit temporary) on eating wild animals in Wuhan. Although there will always be ignorant, selfish people out there who cause problems by stockpiling to extreme, there seems to be plenty of more considerate people out there as well. I guess there is good and bad in everything!

    Liked by 3 people

          1. Agreed. We were told to work from home and to not even come back into the building if we had so much as a sniffle to get or do anything. So, I’m good with that. 🙂 I work from home 3 out of 5 days anyway, so it’s not much of a change for me. But I’m glad to not have to interact with anyone outside my home right now. Have a great day and stay safe.

            Liked by 1 person

  6. In India, at least 114 affected by the virus. 13 cured. 2 deaths. 7 cases in Delhi which is next to my city. All schools, colleges, malls, gyms, etc have been ordered to close. However, exams would be conducted as its exam season in schools. But no classes.

    Precautions. Just washing hands. Work from home started from Monday.

    I’d just study and read after work.

    Since you mentioned the doughnut guy, I have a huge list of funny stories to share from India— have seen a lot from other countries too but I think nothing beats India 😀

    We celebrated Holi on March 10. A festival of colours. A day before Holi you have a holy bonfire. In Mumbai city, a giant effigy of Coronasur (Corona +asur; asur is devil) was burnt for Holika Dahan (the holy fire).
    Priests at a temple put face masks on faces of deities to protect them from the virus.
    A group of Rajasthani women made up a Holi song called ‘Corona bhaag jaa, Bharat me tharo kain kaam re (Corona run away, you have no work in India).
    People are having weddings wearing masks. Instead of shaing hands or hugging, they are doing leg shakes and namaste
    A union minister was chanted “Go corona go”
    A vendor was selling Corona for Rs 20.. he was calling the masks corona 😀
    We have a bhajan (prayer song) on Corona.
    We had a gaumutra (cow urine) party as people are suggesting that it will kill the virus
    College students chanted ‘Jai corona’ (jai means victory) after their classes got cancelled.
    A pastor is suggested to apply a ‘sacred oil’ and chant ‘blood of Jesus’
    We have movie names registered in the name of corona. Corona pyaar hai and deadly corona. Corona pyar hai is a reworking on a early 2000s movie called ‘Kaho na pyaar hai (Say it..there’s love)’.. the corona movie is going to be a love story in the times of corona.
    I am having a gala time at how we are dealing with the crisis 😛
    (I have links to photos and videos of all of these, in case you are bored at home or panic buying stuff or just anxious about the pandemic)

    Coming to the good thing– we have a comic book especially made for children below the age of 12 to help them understand what’s happening so that they don’t panic. (you can find it here– https://bloggingexposure.wordpress.com/2020/03/15/coronavirus-comic-book/)

    I have come across a lot of memes, funny TikTok videos and some heartwarming stories too from around the world.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Schools are all closed here. Classes are done on-line for college students. I’m not sure how they are dealing/will deal with exams. They might be postponed or something.

      A lot of people are working from home here, too, but not everyone, which I find rather strange. If I stay home and then come back to an office where some people stayed, I might contract the virus and then restart its spread. Then, the whole point is lost. It’s terrible to see that some people don’t care about their employees/co-workers, etc.

      Always fun to read stories from your part of the world. I did read about cow urine and was wondering if you had tried. Or anyone else here on WP… I might have to research that.

      I think a comic book is a great way to explain all of this to young ones.

      Stay safe and golden!

      Like

      1. In an adjacent state, they said that all students till class 8 would be promoted without exams.

        Online classes for college students here too. Or at least they are sharing notes so that students can self study n prepare for exams.

        Lol no! I haven’t tried cow urine. I won’t. Never. It’s just a hilarious and stupid thought for me. There are definitely some people who have tried it, but I’ve not met them.

        You too, stay safe! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

          1. yeah… for the higher classes they postponed it last night. I’m glad they did that. Making the students go to write exams can spread it too. We all should be responsible n staying home

            Liked by 1 person

  7. I love how Italy are joining together! I don’t mind the space… it’s nice to have more space from people and slightly more cleanliness. I loved your intro! Space is a personal thing. I need space in general, the people I’m close to can come closer….
    They say we’re a few weeks behind Italy. I hope we don’t go on lockdown…
    Love, light, and glitter

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m right there with you. Personal space is sacred and should not be used without consulting the other person first. And I’m glad to hear people are washing their hands and sanitizing things. Took them long enough.

      Yea, here in the US, we are behind Europe and it seems like it will get real bad before it gets better. More and more drastic measures are begin taken. I read yesterday that 40-70% of the population will become infected. That’s A LOT!

      Stay golden and safe!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. “Why is it we wait until a health crisis” to exercise common sense? Good question. And why does it take a health crisis for people to come face to face with their own mortality? Like it or not, we are all going to die, someday, or something. Whenever or whatever it is, we should be living our lives the best we can every day. This is a golden opportunity for Christians to practice their faith. Fear and anger are two things that do real damage to the immune system, so if we follow the biblical instructions to trust God and love one another, we will all be a lot stronger (and happier).

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Exactly. Well said.
      I was somewhat surprised that churches closed their doors, but it makes sense. They, too, are trying to look out for us. I pray that this does not drive people farther away from the Lord. You know – out of sight, out of mind…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Our church had service on line Sunday morning, and in the streamed evening prayer service the pastors prayed over requests that had been emailed in. This week we are being emailed “family worship guides” daily, so that we can worship in homes and (very) small groups. There’s also a comment button, so we can continue the dialogue about the messages.
        Meanwhile the usual emailing of needs, followed quickly by “Need met!” is a continuing encouragement. These people have so much love for one another, if you want to meet a need you have to act fast! I was too late to bring dinner to a couple of homes, and I am apparently too old (67) to join another task force. So tomorrow I’ll be going to the most sterile place in town (The American Red Cross blood donation center) and do one thing that I CAN do.

        Liked by 2 people

  9. You know, there’s one good thing about this coronavirus. It’s a unifying thing. People all over the planet are panic-buying toilet paper… which gives them something in common to talk about. I feel a lot closer to folks from other nations now than I have done for a long time — and all because of a virus.

    (I just wish the media hype would die down a bit. There are other things to report, too!)

    Liked by 3 people

  10. I am in Florida, returning to Canada at the end of this week. I will have to self-isolate for 14 days. My kids already shopped and filled my fridge for me with milk, eggs, bread, cheese etc. I have lots of other stuff in the freezer and pantry. I feel fine, but will follow protocol. I feel bad for the elderly, sick and auto surpressed.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. I love the videos from Italy on Instagram, so fun and heartwarming. There was one guy making funny posts pretending to be a D.J. at his stove etc….
    The virus isn’t affecting us too much as we are not social and don’t go anywhere. I do clean homes so I check in with the families to make sure they are not sick and that they are comfortable with me being there. The consignment store I work at 10 hours a week is still open and they are wiping everything down constantly. It’s very slow right now so it’s easy to clean after each customer.
    I would be thrilled to stay home for a month! We live on a mountain…..yay!

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Went to the store with my family today, and saw a woman with two carts filled to the brim with napkins. Nothing else. Just napkins. It’s kind of astounding… For us, it was just a normal shopping trip; but for some people out there, you’d think it was the end of the world. Maybe I’m just too sheltered to grasp the terror of catching some news-worthy disease… But for me, it’s not a reality, not something to really be stressing about, until it happens. Well — until it affects me, I guess. I suppose that makes me selfish. But then, what do you call the folks who can make igloos out of toilet paper?

    Liked by 2 people

  13. I worry that we are waiting for an outbreak to start before any active measures start getting taken seriously…

    Saw people avoiding a hand sanitizer dispenser at the entrance of a bank and insisted on queuing the usual way and ignoring the guard who was trying to get people to stand one meter apart add it left gaps which line jumpers where utilising…

    I haven’t been to my bank in over a year I wonder if my account is still valid well there isn’t any money in it anyway…

    I was just watched people’s antics on my way to somewhere else

    ~B

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yup. While some people around me are in absolute panic, there are some who go about their lives the EXACT same way they did before this all started.

      Ha! I see you have similar examples.

      I stayed in today but will go out tomorrow to check things out.

      Like

  14. I’d rather eat a donut 😉
    but going to the toilet can’t be easy with a suit like that. Then again, we’re running out of toilet paper, so….

    I hope companies can learn from this. If working from home and remote would have been more acceptable, it wouldn’t have been a big transition.
    I know managers are pooping their pants about their employees working from home, because God forbid that you trust the person you have hired 😑
    I am slightly ammused however to see that my previous company can’t run business as usual due to many international course participants.
    Bot in health, but financially I’d like to see them go down like the titanic.
    I am evil, I know, but what can I say? I learned from the best (them) 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It made me hungry for one, too. I might have to give in and get some soon,

      I assume that he only puts it on when he goes outside.

      Eeeeeee-XACTLY! If they listened to me months ago, everything would have been breezy now. The amount of disorganization is astouding. But then again, it is not. We know how “smart” they are… No one wants to do anything until they HAVE TO. And then they cry about losing profit… The example you set…

      Yup. I have this one person who basically thinks I’m lazy because I “don’t want to” come in to work… They can’t process that I am actually MORE productive at home. I don’t stress in traffic, I am more relaxed by not having to interact face-to-face with some people, etc.

      I don’t blame you.

      Like

      1. I think the comfort zone thing is also depending of the culture. When I worked in Belgium, the colleagues who grew up in the French part would give each other every morning 4 kisses on the cheeks.
        I prefer just to wave and smile to someone. No need to touch each other at work.

        Not months ago, YEARS ago.
        We are living in a modern world and constantly talk about pollution. Working from home 2/3 times per week should have been simply a standard.
        If I was the president of the world, I would say that each employer should pay the employee for fuel and time for commute.
        I bet that working from home would be a lot more tolerated out of the sudden.

        Oh please. how much does this person have to commute to work.
        You get to have an hour extra sleep, can’t they realize how much more efficient you would actually get to be.
        And this is the problem with people, you are only not lazy if you work long and hard.
        Efficient working is never appreciated.

        Liked by 1 person

  15. Excellent and thoughtful post as always. I loved the donut guy! Indeed, people get crazy recently not only about filling up their domestic stocks but also about their bipolar approach toward the current situation. I believe that a healthy and reasonable attitude is the way to overcome paranoia.

    Liked by 1 person

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