The Corona Diaries: I’m up and dressed, what more do you want?

I

Since Monday 11th, this country of ours has opened some of the restaurants and selected stores and businesses under certain conditions, but not my daughter’s school. As before, capitalism trumps education. And I still have to work from home, which doesn’t half work. I don’t mean to say that we should open up everything, and unconditionally. I mean the opposite: when someone is down with the flu, we recommend that they stay at home until they are fine again, plus one day, just to be safe. Can we not do that right now as well, seeing as the new freedoms are grossly abused? We are risking an absolutely unnecessary second wave these days, and what should have been a mild second wave when every public pool, every fitness room, every brothel will open again, will be a third wave.

II

I think that people demonstrating anywhere in the world for lifting any and all lockdowns are bloody idiots. Switzerland has said yes to the epidemic law in 2013, giving our government the right to take the health and wellbeing of us, the citizens, into its own hands for six months. Those bobbleheads who publicly claim that their democratic rights are being abused by the lockdown had the chance to democratically say no that law, and I would ask them to democratically shut up and stay home.

III

IV

I admit that I am ranting, but I mean it. I also have a kind of Corona fatigue. Others have it, too: while queueing up at the food store, there was more than one senior citizen brushing past me and actually touching my clothing with their own on their way to the disinfectant bottle. I know that this is the hardest time, when all the jokes have been made and nothing is funny anymore and your hands smell of disinfectant every day. But in Romania, if you want to go shopping, you have to get a permit, and that permit is not free. You also might not get such a permit without being given a reason. If you get it, you go shopping on that very day. If you want to go shopping the next day, you have to get a new permit – that you have to pay for again, and that you might not get. The army is patrolling the streets of major cities. – I know it’s hard around here, but it’s harder elsewhere. I want my favorite movie theater to open up again – I need it like heroin -, but in other places, even here in this country, poor and broke people are queuing up for food.

V

There are many discarded blue latex gloves by the side of the road or in shopping trollies. It’s a symbol of fear as well as of egotism. I’ve seen a woman touching her pregnant friend’s belly in the pasta aisle, and the other woman just smiled. I’ve seen many oldtimers congregate with their grown kids and grandkids today without a care in the world, and certainly without face-mask, on Mothers’ Day. If you ask someone really old, they will tell you about the Spanish Flu and what it did to the area here. I know that Corona is not nearly as bad as this, but even Corona will come in waves. Like fire in space. The highest infection rate has happened four days ago, May 20, so those countries that are so lucky to have almost no new infection should not allow travelling abroad just yet.

VI

You could almost add Joachim Trier’s Thelma (2017) to the X-Men movies because there is a young woman at the centre of the story who is not sure what is wrong with her: she has fits that are not epileptic, people around her disappear and sometimes reappear again. She intuits that she might be the agent for these displacements, but there is nothing she actively does, and so she cannot be sure. – The movie slowly builds up its suspense, showing us Thelma as a shy, religious country girl who has a hard time making friends. Relationships and light drugs are too much for her, especially if she has to confess her trespasses to her parents. Trier avoids all sensationalism while slowing revealing what kind of gift Thelma seems to have. And not every gift is a superpower.

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