Like almost everyone else, I’ve been watching the Coronavirus do its stuff from the last weeks of 2019 up to the present day and even though I don’t yet have it; it has affected me quite badly.
As a tour guide in London I have not just lost all my bookings and earnings but I have also lost money on tickets to attractions that were bought in good faith but cannot be returned. I’ve diligently repaid every deposit made to me and broken my own terms and conditions to do so for very last minute cancellations.
Currently I am not sure when I will get my next penny and due to being pushed under the train and moving house and various other things it isn’t like I have much to begin with, what with November and January and February being such famously good months for tourism.
As a Sole Trader, I don’t get sick pay or paid holidays (haven’t had a day off for 7 years), I’m not entitled to any government payments even if I were to get Coronavirus and self-isolate. I’m expected to value society enough not to make people ill and yet am not valued enough to make sure I don’t starve or lose my home.
As someone with asthma and a compromised immune system, I’m definitely one of those most of risk of suffering complications. This is actually the first winter since 2005 that I haven’t in some shape or form been in hospital, had pneumonia, coughed up blood or been on successive waves of 3,4 or 5 courses of antibiotics and these just from a random if selfish cough or sneeze from members of the public suffering a normal cold.
It seems the world is in total panic, the supermarkets are empty and many of the predictably loudest and most selfish people are hoarding, making light of things or conversely berating decision makers that they never voted for in the first place.
I find it a little weird, I’m surely more likely to die of flue or pneumonia type illnesses every single winter until I do than 97% of people who are going crazy. In fact I think anyone who is in a position to hoard must have a really cushy and generally worry-free life.
To me it is just another winter illness, albeit one that might kill me in April or May rather than December when all the hoarders go round thoughtlessly spreading their illnesses with little concern for others.
Me, I have an eighth of a roll of toilet paper and it’s no big deal, there are certainly more important things to worry about when you might die. I’m not sure what the correlation is with toilet roll and a respiratory illness. Do people hoard socks incase they get a headache? Should I buy a few scarves incase it is a hot summer?
I have enough food to last a day or two as I don’t do my shopping in supermarkets anyway and even if I could all the pasta and stuff I can’t eat anyway due to my food intolerances so in someways people are panicking over being reduced to a diet which is still more varied and fun than mine is at the best of times!
I think the media does a lot to hype things up; switch it off and life returns to some sense of normality. When it comes down to it, we all know this horrible virus is out there and one way or the other it might get most of us.
We know how best to reduce us being one of the unlucky sufferers but once we have it we don’t know how each of us will fare. There is no need to keep going on about it and highlighting the daily growth in cases, deaths but strangely not those given the all-clear. Whether it is terrorism, Brexit or a Coronavirus, no-one can accuse the media of not doing their bit to add fuel to the flames.
As an introvert, I have been generally self-isolating for a few decades before it became trendy. Now I shall just be doing it whilst particularly impoverished and with a semi-habitable home and I shall make it or not but panicking about it or acting like a selfish arse isn’t going to help much.
I have a sore chest or throat or cough one way or the other for 2 weeks out of every month at best. I’ve already had a dozen or so Corona scares in my head since Christmas and if I’m still here next winter or in 10 to come it will be the same then.
I’ve said it before and maybe I will say it again but I think it is just highlights how selfish people are when they only panic for something they themselves are at risk of or something which makes the headlines but don’t care about many other things. A car crash or terrorist killing 3 or 4 people can go round the world and even change laws in hours. Hundreds of thousands of people dying from air pollution and no-one cares, neither the law-makers or the loudmouths who worry if they can wipe their behinds after stuffing their facings on mass-produced junk food.
At the end of the day it is all just a blip in history and one day things will go back to the way they were and I say that as one who may well be blipped out.