NOTES FROM A PANDEMIC
I live in Melbourne. It’s a beautiful city. I was born here. I have lived here my whole life. I am proud to call it my home. Something else lives here. A virus. Insidious, unwanted, and deadly. Covid!
I’m not a scientist, doctor, or epidemiologist. I’m not a politician. I’m a resident. I know Melbourne’s streets, buildings, parks, and gardens. I know its sandy beaches, the bay and the four seasons it can throw at me in one day. I know it’s museums, its art, and its libraries. I know the taste of food from around the world brought by many settlers who also made Melbourne their home.
I am fortunate to be Melburnian.
In early October 2021, Melbourne is expected to break a record. The longest locked-down city in the world! I am saddened by this record. I miss the dinners with friends, I miss the hugs from loved ones, I miss the drives into the country. I am dismayed by the deserted streets, closed businesses, and abandoned face masks strewn on the ground. Yet here I am. Locked in.
Perhaps vaccines could have been ordered earlier, quarantine hotels been more secure, borders better controlled. None of this interests me. Being free of lockdowns is what I need.
The virus is a killer. The data speaks for itself. I believe the health officials. If ignored this sinister, highly contagious virus will infect so many our hospitals will rapidly be swamped, and many Melbournians will succumb to this devious disease. I believe the health experts when they tell me the best way to suppress the virus is vaccination. History cries the loudest. Smallpox, cholera, rubella. Without vaccinations, some of us would not be here today.
I respect freedom of speech, the opinion of others but not when it denies the right to life. I respect the right to protest but not when the message is hijacked by anarchists out for a fight.
I am immensely grateful to the doctors and the nurses, the scientists and the researchers, the police, and their families. I am thankful to all those who have faced Covid head-on for my future; a future that may be different but one that is mine.
It is my responsibility to wear a mask, check in, get tested if needed, quarantine if necessary and it is my responsibility to get vaccinated. I need to do this to protect those that I love.
I am a resident of Melbourne. I want my beautiful home back.
Signed - Joe