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What's our COVID future?


We're now two years into this strange new way of living.  Locked in, locked out, locked up, locked into new habits of check in , check out, check up.  We're testing our mental fortitude, our nasal passages, our friends and our patience.

Our friends... yes. Maybe you've discovered that some of your friends are quite bonkers, and prefer to believe in conspiracies instead of science, or simply think they're invincible. Personally, I want to stay off the list of people who had someone close die from COVID.

Whatever the case, there's been upheaval on a scale we haven't seen for many, many decades. In responding to the pandemic, our political leaders range from inept, to caring more about their political survival and public image than actually fulfilling their duty of care.

Generally we've become a lot more comfortable with the idea of living with COVID, regardless of whether the latest variant is likely more transmissible than the last.  This is despite the goal posts moving on a daily basis.  Our comfort comes from learning through the common experience. We know from virologists that microscopic airborne droplets spread the virus, and wearing masks works to reduce transmission. We know that hand hygiene helps. It's become routine.  We also know that vaccination gives you a better chance of surviving, and reduces severe illness. The numbers are in. We also know that the tin hat brigade (aka "maskholes") out for their weekly weekend protests seem to be OK with making their 7 year-old boys wear T-Shirts emblazoned with "My body, my choice!", yet I'm still waiting to hear the pro-abortion lobby complain about that. But I digress.

We keep hearing about the "new normal" and "learning to live with the virus". Sure. A century ago, the so-called "Spanish" flu ran its course. A lot of people died. It moved on, and so did we.

Here's my prediction. Eventually we'll treat COVID much like the flu, but most of us will be much more cautious if it remains so much more dangerous.  There won't be an obsession with case numbers in the media, there won't be dramatically different rules for every jurisdiction, but there will be rules, probably mostly imposed by ourselves. 

It's been 25 years since I had the flu, and it made me desperately ill. I never want to catch it again.  I expect most of us will say the same for this monster, if we survive it first time, and it's likely that most of us will eventually catch it, be it variant Σ, Φ or Ψ.  It doesn't take much effort to let your guard down.

Stay vigilant. Call out bad behaviour. Get the whole world vaccinated.