When the news of the virus first hit headlines, I was in the midst of getting ready to go on a trip across the country as a volunteer for an international bicycle race, Le Tour De Langkawi.
It would cover 7 states, and had cyclists from all over the world. I was part of the Hotel and FnB Team and our job was to make sure the rooms for all cyclists and personnel was ready when they arrived, as well as rooms for the medical team, admin and bicycle storage.
The cyclist had strict diets and there were some Must-have's and some definite No's. Carbs before they start their race, nothing spicy, no fish with bones and nothing too exotic.
As the cyclists started arriving from all over the world, I saw what was to come but did not think much of it. Temperatures had to be taken, forms had to be filled and this made the process long and cumbersome, but I could walk from room to lobby without a mask.
And then, we find out that the next state for the 2nd leg would not allow the team from China in. So, on top of all the other challenges of getting it right, we had this new challenge to navigate.
That was in February 2020. And here we are, 16 months later with nothing to show for all the restrictions, SOPs and lockdowns.
We are in one right now with no definite date in sight. The markers are below 4k cases daily, ICU capacity at moderate levels and at least 10% of the population fully vaccinated (3.2M) for restrictions to be relaxed.
So many have lost jobs, shut down their businesses, pay cuts, no pay leave, struggles with online school, suicides, domestic violence.
Initially, I was good. It slowed down my very busy life. I learnt to cook more and got better at it. I liked having The Hubs around, I appreciated not being stuck in traffic while fetching and ferrying the kids from school and their activities.
But now I am done on so many levels. I have already eaten into my savings and beyond. The kids seem to be okay hanging out at home, but it's sad to see them just sitting or lying down most of the time when they used to be so active in sports and the performing arts. The Hubs who is in the production/performing arts business is barely hanging on by a thread.
I have read enough to know, that this is not going to go away completely. Just like the flu, we will just have to do the necessary to keep it at bay. I cannot wait for us to get back to a quality of life that's bearable, to begin with.
Who would have thought that going for a walk as a family would be out of the question in 2021? Who would have expected visiting a parent who lived 20km away would get you fined? Who would have thought seeing a smile in person would be rare? Ish!!!