From Valentine to Quarantine, all within a month! Corona – Come on, Go Na!

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From Valentine to Quarantine, all within a month! Corona – Come on, Go Na!

From Valentine to Quarantine, all within a month! Corona – Come on, Go Na!

Brian Fernandes   ¦    Mar 18, 2020 04:58:40 PM (IST)

From Valentine to Quarantine, all within a month! Corona – Come on, Go Na!-1Corona Go, Go Karuna, Corona Go was a unique protest against a virus that knows no religion, no gender, and no boundaries. And it was not shut down like other protests these days - maybe because it had a noble intention - to prevent an illegal migrant from entering the country; and believe it or not, it came via a legal migrant! There were prayers even, to prevent its entry. But neither the protest or the prayer helped, as the virus hit India with primitive intensity and its effects have ballooned into a national crisis. When Valentine is denied, does Quarantine come calling? 

The Corona Virus or Covid-19 (the name sounds vaguely familiar) as it has been christened without baptism - else it would have been eradicated perhaps - is an international citizen (by naturalization), irreligious and agnostic, and cannot be persecuted as a minority - because it has become the majority and persecutor wherever it has applied for citizenship.

Citizenship seems to be its birthright unlike ours! It is widely feared and therefore respected and does not require special provisions as in the CAA, which seems largely forgotten. But it may have unwittingly used the Act to enter India - because it made its way over to India just as it was being thrown out of other countries after much exclusion and persecution. It has already scored more than a century and made a strong case for exclusion in the IPL!

But the best is yet to come - in terms of the C Virus's glory or ignominy - only time can predict its outcomes correctly - There are no opinion polls to depend on in this regard as all the TV channels have gone quiet. Also, in the meanwhile many other uniquely Indian preoccupations too have been forgotten or left behind for another day - Terrorism, business, economy, Kashmir, fuel prices and Religion – we have washed our hands of all of these - as we have been advised to do by the Prime Minister no less (Wash our hands that is!);

Along the way, we have even sanitized the hands of the poor and marginalized who have to work for a living daily. They have no work from home facility, no pay in lieu of work, no health insurance and no backup savings for these runny nose days. What of them? Not sure anyone cares, or if do, they can do anything about it - there’s no money in India’s kitty to do what POTUS is contemplating in the USA.

So for cough, Corona, I say!

With sports and work locked down, pharmacies out of stock of essentials, and although MEN are not to be touched (Mouth Eyes Nose - it’s the new Bad Touch) Quaranteens are guaranteed all over the world especially in China and Europe, 13 and half years from now. India will have them anyway, and they will add to the young demographics we often boast of in comparison to our neighbors and Europe. That’s a plus. That’s what addition means!

The Government has learned from the experience of other countries especially as its students and citizens (that is yet to be ascertained :) ) were brought in from most parts of the world (commendable) to be tested and serve out their quarantines here in India. But the Quarantine facilities in some areas of the country left a lot to be desired – the C suspects were more like prisoners of war – but then maybe it should be viewed as war - rather than as patients. Many felt they were going through a C Section.

Reports say that some facilities provided and the caregivers' attitudes and support was beyond par for the course, while some others say that the facilities and care provided was worse than pneumonia the virus brings on and it is because of this imbalance that there were cases that escaped the facilities to infect others. Sharing is caring they thought perhaps. But then again, all these reports are from the WhatsApp daily Mail, so it’s rather difficult to sift the grain from the chaff. Anything about Covid is viral, even the virus.

So for Cough, Corona, I say.

India is now entering stage 3 of the epidemic life cycle, when the cases begin to quadruple due to community transmission and the efficacy of the partial lockdowns in many affected areas will be tested. Hopefully, our Namastes will prevent the show of hands of patients and our ability to pass water frequently..... over our hands, will kill the will of the Corona. But that remains to be seen.

The brighter side!

Even as businesses and airlines go bust with social distancing and lockdowns, the Climate has made significant gains. There is reduced toxic emission, noise, and consumption of meat and meat products. This has contributed positively to Climate Change, and that’s on record. What the Paris Accord couldn’t do in so many years, the Wuhan Virus did within three months. The effect is even evident in the national Capital. So is it good or bad?

Along the way, we have learned a few home truths too.

  • We have learned that there is no need for exams to gauge the intelligence of our children or promote them;
  • We have learned that we can work from home (not all of us), and conduct business over the internet saving on a lot of accessories and the environment - Paper, plastic ware, water, electricity, etc;
  • We have learned that we can stay and play with the family - we don’t have to sweat the small stuff.
  • We have learned that we can shop at the nearest Kirana, helping him make a living - there is no need to go to a mall. 
  • We have learned that we can watch a movie with the family on our home tv screen and enjoy it as much, if not more;
    • We have learned that we don’t need big weddings or funerals – we can do with small enjoyable ones. 
  • We have learned to enjoy home-cooked food – perhaps out of fear of contamination and contact. 
  • And we have learned that we can enjoy good health with home exercise and fresh air from the balcony.  

A thought for those who pack our parachutes in these volatile times

We crib about everything, especially when it’s the outcome of someone else's deeds. We rarely appreciate or praise those who pack our parachute - the one that will save us when the chips are down, and it’s time to do that.

Our doctors, nurses, public health officials, private sector volunteers, and even Air India, our embassies abroad have done a wonderful job so far, some at the risk of contracting the virus themselves. Hats off to them and a big Thank you.

Let’s stay away from the MENH (Mouth Eyes Nose Hands) and help them to help us. Warm moist throats, the kind of effect that a sip of the Corona Extra beer has is what can keep the Virus away from the lungs where it is at its most dangerous – so drink a lot of water!

There is no doubt that in the end, we will win some, lose some.

Corona – Come on, Go na!