In the last few weeks, we’ve had the course of our lives turned upside down by an intruder. He looked so harmless and distant that we could not have imagined that he would cause a global upheaval. You guessed it; it’s the coronavirus, the name of the disease it causes is so charming that it was hard to fear it. The plague is at least a name that scared the hell out of people, made them want to barricade themselves in, to run away. But corona, who wouldn’t want a crown? But this crown, instead of being on the head, is grafted onto the respiratory system and like anything else in the wrong place, causes considerable damage. The supreme crown that can be obtained in case of contamination is death.
Very quickly, the virus was able to cross continents; it demonstrated its power of propagation by crossing the Asian continent at the speed of lightning, inviting itself onto the old continent and make the pillars of the coliseum tremble. Once Italy was affected, the virus continued to spread and laid siege to Europe. The common European response to the virus remains an illusion. Europe has clearly shown that it is a colossus with feet of clay, a monetary chimera, incapable of the slightest cohesion beyond the Euro. Full lockdown, semi lockdown? Each country has the choice to make the arrangements that suit it. We’re going to war in scattered ranks.
But the watchword is almost the same: get to safety, and the safest place to be, is home.
Schools, nurseries, all places of entertainment and social gatherings are closed.
Parents who have become substitute teachers have discovered it is a real job. If we have trouble managing our kids, imagine having to put up with 20 of them.
Sports activities, events, all the distractions that allowed us to escape from our lives have been canceled.
Visiting friends, going to the cinema, etc. is no longer possible.
We will have to be content with being ourselves, 24 hours a day, a difficult exercise when we have only learned to live through the eyes of others.
Sartre used to say that hell is other people, and with quarantine, we discover the escape route is other people. Without them, there are no points of reference.
Here we are faced with ourselves and our “loved ones” within the four walls of our sanitized jail.
Now we are unteaching our offspring the elementary rules of politeness that we have instilled in them:
“No, you mustn’t shake hands.”
“No, stay away from everyone.”
We fight against a concealed enemy with the means we have, even if we feel they remain derisory.
Mandatory safety distance when shopping or meeting someone. The corona is a great pass for misanthropists. No need to engage in empty and hollow conversations about the weather or the color of granny’s sweater, existential questions certainly, but which you can do without.
All things considered, it’s still important to emphasize how lucky we are to have the comfort of a roof over our heads and to be surrounded by the people we love. Unfortunately, not everyone can say the same.
For some, the home is anything but a place of rest because of the physical or psychological violence they suffer there.
Africa, spared at the beginning of this pandemic, was astonishing to the experts. Yet it was known to be the cradle of all evils in the absence of the cradle of humanity.
But even if it is dragging its feet, Africa is finally making its debut, to the enormous relief of the birds of ill omen.
The privileged who, to escape the quarantine imposed in Europe, go to Africa will contribute by their unconsciousness to the proliferation of the disease.
They forget that under our skies a quarantine similar to the one in Europe is practically impossible, also, our hospitals are unequipped to cope with this pandemic.
But as a tweet widely spread on social networks pointed out, African leaders who can no longer treat themselves in Europe will have plenty of time to experience the realities faced by their people because of the under-equipped hospitals, while hoping this tragic episode will bring them closer to the populations they govern.
The media is giving us the gruesome rubble of the victims, so happy to have something to sink their teeth into. The virus has succeeded in relegating the migrant crisis and ISIS to the background. We forget that during this period, the most vulnerable are the ones to whom we can reach out and extend a helping hand…oups a helping elbow.
Anonymous, celebrities, rich, poor, black, white, this virus makes no distinction, “all equal in the face of COVID-19.”
The damn long-toothed virus gnawed away at two massive African baobabs, which eventually fell out.
Aurlus Mabele precursor of the soukouss died on March 19th, 2020.
Manu Dibango singer of soul Makossa affectionately called papa groove whose famous “mamase mamasa makossa” was sampled by Michael Jackson and many others, put down his saxophone for the last time on March 24th, 2020.
Great losses for the African continent. Dear departed loved ones, may the land of our ancestors welcome you. We will find you again every day through the legacy you have bequeathed to us. “The dead are not dead,” said Birago Diop.
If the animal vector is the preferred source for the origin of this virus, we can’t agree on the culprit. Is it the Pangolin? Or the bat? My vote goes to the bat. From the beginning, this virus has been turning our lives upside down.
Let’s take advantage of the fact that we have our head down to ask ourselves the right questions and get the right answers to enjoy our life, once we are right side up.
Happy quarantine, happy introspection. Take care of yourself, take care of us, take care of them.
2 thoughts on “The coronavirus turned our lives upside down”
Welcome back! You had me at unteaching our kids simple etiquette and politeness. Great writing! Let’s hope Africans, our people, stay home so this unwelcome visitor can leave early.
A.b my friend.Long time …I hope you are well and your loved ones too.Thank you for your continous support, I am deeply touched by it.Let’s hope indeed that our continent get protected.We went through a lot already. Take care.