Pandemic Distribution

It's all starting to feel normal again, for some

Much like William Gibson's quote about the future, this COVID-19 Pandemic still feels unevenly distributed.

The future is here. It's just not widely distributed yet.

— William Gibson

After a year or so of initial panic, wiping everything down, masks, self-isolation, lies & conspiracy theories, and finally vaccines it seems we could be past the worst of it.

Sitting in my garden, the sun feeling good on my arms, it doesn't feel like I'm in a pandemic. But I guess that's the difference between reality and the stories we tell.

Misconceptions

Pandemics, whether real (viral) or make-believe (zombie), are depicted pretty much in the same way for the last decade or so. Empty cities, burnt-out cars, abandoned medical equipment, and everything in muted colors.

3M face masks

And while the first months showed eerily similar scenes in hospitals across the world (freezer trucks as morgues) as medical staff battled against the unbelievable toll of COVID-19, a lot of things kept going as normal.

I think that's the thing that makes it more unsettling. We get lulled back in the sense of safety as life plods on. We're no longer looking at empty shelves in stores. Day's turn into weeks. Seasons move on regardless. That's the problem for some. If it doesn't match the expectations they can't (or won't) accept it's real.

World War memories

I remember hearing stories from my Grandparents about World War II. How it was incredibly hard being under the constant threat of bombing in London. Of not knowing what food (if any) rationing would give you next week.

But then they'd come out with memories of spending Summer days in the garden watching the trails of planes above like it was the most normal thing. Of how life, and the World, kept going regardless. I would see photos of people smiling and having fun, while knowing family & friends were fighting and dying less than 200 miles away.

Going Forward

I spent the bulk of the day sitting in a Panera Bread today, without a mask for the most part. Video chatted to people in South Africa and London. Slack'd and emailed on projects and deadlines. It all seems so very 'normal'.

But as we're pulling out, India seems to be sinking deeper back in. Members of our development teams have been off either with COVID, nursing family members, or both. One of the team died.

I worry that as countries pull further apart with handling this, the more we'll forget we were all in this together.