CORONA PANIC

Do you like me, feel that you cannot hear another word on the news about the dreaded Corona Virus? Not that I am in any way suggesting that this is not something we have to take seriously, but sometimes news reporting is so totally over the top! Like for instance the hoarding of simple household items, like Toilet Paper. Please will someone enlighten me why we should be hoarding this? It might be better to ensure that you have a normal number of painkillers (like Aspirin or Paracetamol) to perhaps, if you suddenly get a high temperature, be able to bring this under control.

There have been many influenza panics over the years (Swine Flu, SARS to name but two) and of course every single year people get flu. A common virus which is spread through the air by sneezing or coughing on droplets of moisture. 

All of a sudden something that the majority of people do many times a day, washing their hands, has become a major issue. Normal people do that all the time don’t they?

Also shaking hands is now banned on a worldwide scale and it was nice to see the Dutch royals yesterday on a State Visit in Indonesia using the Namaste hand sign to say hello. We should do this more often don’t you agree? Thank goodness air kissing (besides someone’s cheek) is a ‘no no’ too, now no one is going to miss that are they?

I just happened to have to go for my heart check up at the Catharina Hospital in Eindhoven when the news broke that morning (5th March) that one of the nursing staff had been affected by a patient and was now at home in quarantine. Weeks before my visit I had received an email that the hospital was taking all the precautions they could in preparation for an outbreak in Holland. In the meantime, the entire county seems to be on lockdown. Many people have become infected.

The entire hospital was fitted out with hand sanitizers but sitting in the waiting room as far away from others to be as polite as possible, I noticed about 5 people coughing nonstop into their hands. For goodness sake, how many more times do they have to inform us not to do that and keep hands clean. I was flabbergasted when one of the doctors came out and greeted his patients with a handshake, including those who had been coughing into their hands. Are we then surprised that the virus is passed on and rages on like a forest fire? Are people so stupid. Yes, I am afraid they are!

My own cardiologist said, it’s all about common sense and hygiene and it is good to wash your hands regularly and if you feel feverish or unwell, then stay at home. In these times, everyone can work from home, well people who work in offices can for sure, and others should stay at home. No one is indispensable. No one!

One story that I found really disturbing was a family who had all the symptoms and had dreadful problems trying to arrange for a proper Corona test. Everyone knew once the outbreak had happened in Italy, it was only a question of time before it spread all over Europe, which is now the case.

But aren’t we all going a bit over the top about things? Isn’t it really just like my cardiologist said: common sense?

If you think you have the symptoms then call the special telephone numbers, don’t go sitting in your GP’s waiting room infecting all the other waiting patients and coughing and spluttering the virus germs into the air.

I had to smile yesterday when the evening news suggested that you need to keep a circle of around 2 meters between you and others when you are in open public places. The reporter had made a sort of hula-hoop around himself and guess what, 2 meters away from other people is a lot. It is virtually impossible to move around the shops but if you feel uneasy going out to shop, use the online service and get it delivered to your door. That is easy!

We all know without any doubt that making and creating so much panic and fear is all about power. Power to make people afraid, even in their own families. Of course, there are numerous examples about people who are so totally ridiculous, like the 900 students from Groningen in Holland who went on a ski holiday in the affected areas in Italy. How damned inconsiderate is that? Especially when an official code red had been announced not to visit Italy unless you absolutely have to. A lot of flights between European countries and Italy have been cancelled, but hey the 900 students could not miss their vacation could they now?

I notice that the news only tells you the negative things. They don’t mention the number of people in China who were infected and are now better do they? 

Here in Holland there is a major panic about the planned Eurovision Song Festival and even worse the Dutch Grand Prix in May. I mean, just imagine if these events have to be cancelled because of possible epidemic virus infections? It sort of puts things into perspective doesn’t it. We would rather spend time worrying about that.

One thing which I do think is despicable is that many companies have put up prices a lot for things like mouth masks, or sanitizing gel, you can hardly buy it anywhere. And laboratories are running out of test sticks. Why on earth isn’t something thinking ahead and ensuring that sufficient stocks are there. It is now weeks since the first confirmed Corona victims in China.

Our daily papers were full of course, about the economic effects too. The AEX stock exchange in Amsterdam took heavy economic losses yesterday and already the pension funds are warning of financial problems. Isn’t this just the usual excuse? You know it rains in some vague place in the world and the price of potatoes goes up overnight. As I said any excuse.

However, my heart goes out to all of the people who have been affected. To families who have lost loved ones. To those who are feeling really ill and the only advice is stay indoors, keep warm and drink as much as possible? Ensure high temperatures are kept under control by analgesics and just like the common cold, which is a virus too, stay at home until you are completely better. There is nothing so urgent that cannot wait, in any walk of life. 

Just use your common sense. Shame there are so many influencers in the world who seem to have lost theirs.

Saw this funny cartoon on social media today, which I want to share…. And we all know Bob’s always knows, best doesn’t he?

Just another avenue of thought is that the word Corona means a ring of light around the sun. It is actually an aura or plasma (hot ionized gas) that surrounds the sun and other stars. The Sun’s Corona extends millions of kilometers into outer space and can be best seen during a solar eclipse. The corona around the sun is actually hotter than the sun itself, by a factor would you believe of 150 to 450 times. Average temperature people say is 5800 kelvin. The Corona is also 10 (-12) times as dense as the photosphere and produces about one-millionth as much visible light. The word Corona means a glowing circle of light around an object. Coming from the Latin word for crown or garland.

Just saying!

Images: Google

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Jill Kramer

Hi! I'm Jill and I'm a passionate author of books, short stories, columns and blogs.

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