A little over a year ago I was working out of a beach shack in Goa and hastily decided to dash back to Australia to ride out the emerging pandemic. Sure, I’m a bit of a risk taker, but it just wasn’t practical to risk staying there on the visa I had. I had to leave and come back within a couple of months, but who would take me, and would India let me back in? Some thought I was too hasty and should stay.
In the late 1990s I studied at University in Japan when the world was fascinated by Toyota’s low car defect rates compared to every other brand on the market. It was driving the proud American, car hungry consumer insane! Their efficiency and reliability was so inexplicable, intoxicating, and seemingly unobtainably magical, they termed it ‘X-Efficiency’ and people came from the world over to study this new manufacturing witchcraft. What does this have to do with India?
Then there is that special form of sickness. The one that when people talk about it, their whole face and bodies change from the sheer traumatic memory of it. You know, when you were travelling and you ate something from a street vendor?
“We never get to see Lauren! Can we stop and see Lauren? I miss my friends!” exclaimed Lydia, Deana’s five-and-a-half-year-old daughter as they were walking past Lauren’s home with her four-year-old sister, Emilee. Deana’s heart was breaking. How could she explain to her five-year-old that although Lauren was likely just inside that house, she couldn’t go and see her because they were under quarantine for the coronavirus? She got down on one knee to get closer to them, and held their hands.
But shit really started to get serious; Now there isn’t a place it hasn’t been; They even gave it a shiny new name; Introducing… COVID19. While for many, the symptoms are mild; Their immune systems taking care of the rest; For an increasing and alarming number of people; This awful disease will result in death.