Covid2: No One Knows!

Covid2: No One Knows!

Covid2: No One Knows!

A recent conversation with a friend!

Friend: Covid is not affecting villagers as they have fresh air, clean water, healthy food and population density in villages is less.

Me: But urban poor living in city slums have exact opposite living conditions and they are also not much affected by Covid.

Friend: Seems like, just like income tax, Covid also affects only those in the middle!

Circa: February, 2021, India:

COVID has taken a break from news headlines, life is  back to normal, hospitals are reducing their COVID capacities, airports, restaurants, bars, and tourist destinations are busy, and GDP is projected to grow, all of which makes us believe that happy days are here again.

Fast forward 45 days, and  life has taken a circle back We are back in lockdown, our hospitals are overcrowded again, and news of the loss of friends and  relatives is flowing in.

So, what went wrong?

Depending on which side of the political, philosophical, and economic debate we belong to, the answers will differ vastly. Both sides of the argument sound equally convincing, and therefore, the debate can be bitter, endless, and yet remain inconclusive.

However, we would expect researchers, WHO, governments, medical professionals, et al. to know better and have some good conclusions. Unfortunately, it’s not so. Some snippets:

“Virus spreads through droplets on surfaces” to “chances of virus spreading through surfaces is 1/10,000!” to “virus spread via air” – research on how it spreads is still inconclusive.

“Vaccines will end pandemic” to “vaccines will only prevent seriousness of disease” to “vaccines are not so effective against a certain variant” – more you read, more confusing it gets.

 Some of the European / American cities are in a lock down since 12 plus months – However, virus isn’t going away!

Covid has more variants now than iPhone models!

I can cite many more examples, but I think you got the drift.

“No One Knows”

Most of what we read or see as expert recommendations is an opinion at best. The virus is surprising us even after 15 months. When we figure out its behaviour, it changes Avatar! As my conversation with my friend shows, we take selective data and make interpretations on the basis of what suits us best! That’s good for a friendly banter, but not for a deadly disease affecting the world for the last 15 months.

What can we do?

Since we still don’t know much about COVID, let’s stop discussing it any further and shift our focus to other important aspects of enhancing quality of life. A simple 10-point guide:

  1. Save ourselves from air Pollution: Air pollution is bad for ourlungs,s and in India, a we have the distinction of living in some of the most polluted cities in the world. Solution: Wear mask, it will protect against dust, smoke and other impurities and keep us protected against several lung diseases. (Oh Yes! May help in COVID. control as well).
  2. Learn some Etiquette: We Indians need to learn a lot about maintaining social distance, both physically and in other people’s private affairs;). It is summer time, let’s give ourselves  and our skin some breathing space. (Oh Yes! Last we heard, jumping capability of virus was less than 6 feet. Could be wrong, but 6 feet will surely save us from smelling that sweaty underarm! Yuk!).
  3. Participate in the Swacch Bharat Mission: The government is advertising heavily using our tax money, and unless we mend our ways, they will continue. Wastage of our hard-earned tax money is not done; we better adopt good hygiene habits so that the government stops these advertisements and uses our tax money better. In any case, a good,hygienic,c and clean, disinfected surrounding is not a bad thing (even when the COVID virus is not around us)!
  4. Upgrade Professionally: Enroll in a good professional upgrade program. It may help us propel our careers ahead. (Oh Yes! It will also reduce the time at our disposal to read the so-called expert opinions or view TV debates on COVID.!)
  5. Participating in the Fit India Movement: Will help us impress new acquaintances when we meet them face to face in the post COVID  era. As we don’t want competition in this area, preferably do yoga or exercise solo and not in groups. (Oh Yes! This might also help in improving our immunity).
  6. Plan Retirement: India doesn’t have any social security benefits. If we don’t save now, we might face severe financial issues in old age. Face this reality and let’s start or enhance our SIP immediately. (Oh Yes! This will leave less cash in our pockets and therefore our urge to host parties or go out for weekend outings will also reduce (The government calls it lockdown.).
  7. Government guidelines are stupid; follow them anyways: We don’t want to go to jail at this time, leaving our family behind to face the pandemic all alone.
  8. Avoid those pesky calls from Uncles and Aunts: In India, we have grown under constant social pressure from parents, relatives, neighbours and who not? Pressure to do well in school, to get into a good university, to get married, to have kids… these uncles and aunts have now a new reason to call us:  ‘have you taken the vaccine?’ Common! I thought that after having two kids, I got my freedom from social pressure. Alas! Not yet. Solution: If eligible, go get a vaccine shot, take a selfie and upload it on Facebook. Follow it up by posting our vaccine certificate in family WhatsApp groups. Whether the vaccine works or not, at least those pesky calls will stop. Worth the shot. Isn’t it! (Oh Yeah! It may also build some antibodies against COVID).
  9. Fulfill Professional and Personal Obligations: We all need our livelihoods to continue in these tough times. For those who can work from home, great! If not, let’s go to our workplace, follow all precautions and fulfill our professional obligations.
  10. Don’t panic and follow the doctor’s advice: While the COVID virus is still surprising Homo sapiens with its behavior, in case it catches us, doctors have learned how to treat it effectively. There is about a 99% chance that we will be alright in about 20 days under proper medical supervision.

Conclusion: COVID or not, a good and balanced lifestyle is a good thing and following it won’t cause any harm. There is a chance that these habits may also have the positive side effect of reducing COVID spread! At a personal level, I am adopting the above measures in my lifestyle and hopefully will continue with these habits long after COVID finally bids us goodbye!

Oops, did I sound like an expert? Hope not.

Thanks for reading!


Category: Life

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