How does the world look like now and after this is over?
It’s been long since I have written anything but tonight I feel compelled to pen down my thoughts because what I’m witnessing is something that our next generation would read in history books.
It just took a couple of months to learn about the lockdown of the Wuhan city in China to having my entire country – India being locked down. I never imagined things to get this serious this fast. The dystopian fiction I used to read is slowly coming to life.
Schools, colleges are shut. Events are canceled. Flights and railways have been suspended. Borders are sealed – internationally and even domestically! Retail shops (both online and offline) are no longer selling anything except for groceries. Most private institutions are shut down except for a few who can work remotely. People have been told to stay inside their home at ALL times.
Yup, India is under a complete lockdown for 21 days – that’s 1.3 billion people being told to forget what going out means…. and other countries are soon following suit.
Today marks the tenth day of quarantine.
I work as a software developer in a FinTech company, an industry that can still function (if not thrive) by working remotely. As precautionary methods, we were told to start working from home 10 days ago (way long before the country or state locked down) and every day I wonder how would the world look like when this is over?
How long would it be for us to open our borders again?
Till now, people had been traveling day in and out to any part of the world seamlessly – we were truly a global citizen. Airline tickets have been the cheapest it has ever been in history and the number of people traveling has been the highest.
The introduction to coronavirus has disrupted this flow. While countries are shutdown and borders sealed to contain the virus – I don’t know how long would it be when borders are open again, businesses are ready to start and we no longer have a fear of roaming out in the open.
We now have a subconscious fear of coughing in public
We have always taken flu lightly, calling it just a common cold and cough while we continued to mind our own business – going to work, traveling in public transports and coughing over someone’s shoulders.
Now, this won’t cut it. We have now instilled a subconscious fear of seeing anyone cough or sneeze, let alone if it’s us! I think we would now be more careful with our health, maintain better personal hygiene and stay at home if we are sick.
and wear MASKS.
We now have a deeper appreciation of socializing and going out
Social distancing is the new normal of today and rightly so, it’s highly effective to restrict infections.
While we are social distancing and confining ourselves only to our homes, I feel now we have a deeper appreciation of how much of a blessing it is to just go out and meet your friends over a cup of coffee? or just to go to work and have a brainstorming whiteboard session?
We would find pleasure in the small little things again.
Remote working is the new norm
I personally do not like working from home even though my profession allows it. I always feel that I work best in the environment where I can interact with people face2face and get my work done. But that’s also because I’m an old soul.
But in general, working from home is now a necessity to keep businesses open. Internet providers have seen a 40% increase in their network load. With this change in mindset, this means more flexible work timings and employees don’t have to relocate – which means a larger talent pool to choose from! I can see a large number of employers sticking to this route.
Government taking more healthcare initiatives
We have seen countries healthcare facilities crumbling down by being overburdened in this pandemic. Even the strongest of the economies couldn’t withstand the sheer volume. I hope governments across the world realize that we need to invest in healthcare and its infrastructure even more so that we are better prepared in case of a disaster or another pandemic.
Climate change is real
Air pollution in my city has been the lowest it has ever been. When I go out, I can take a deep breath without inhaling toxic fumes that smelled like carbon. The sky is blue (that’s a luxury for me because the city was always in a haze) and I can finally see stars at night.
There have been reports of air pollution being drastically low throughout the world as cities are under lockdown. Swans have returned in the lakes of Venice and birds have taken over the city. The world is healing and restoring its health.
Coronavirus is a pandemic and in no way, it is good for the planet or mankind but by slowing us down, it has shown how we have taken nature for granted.
Once we go back I hope we don’t go back to normal, we go back to be better.
It feels so completely unreal – the things I’m seeing here and on news. It’s scary. I know this would get over and we would bounce back stronger than ever. Till then, hold tight and stay home.
Also read: It’s been 60 days of lockdown
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