The World is on Lockdown
At the time of writing this, almost four hundred thousand people have been infected worldwide, twenty-one people are dead. Wow, what a way to start a blog post, huh? Reality is not always candy canes and rainbows. Well, four hundred thousand may sound like a low number if you compare it to the nine million people dying of cancer each year, but it’s a high number to reach in three months.
In the beginning we didn’t take it seriously, I know I didn’t. I shrugged and treated it like all the other occasions infections and viruses have spread around the world: “It won’t affect me.”
But as the numbers started to increase in Denmark (where I live), everything changed. The country got put on lockdown and everything rapidly became serious. Between the 8th and 28th of May, the number of infected people went from two hundred and twenty-eight to three-thousand two hundred and seventy-one, and until now sixty-five people have died.
It’s isn’t clear if their deaths have been caused by the virus, and you can never be certain what or who to believe in this kind of situation, but in Denmark, there is somewhat of a close community revolving around this pandemic.
Denmark is a tiny country and this has both positives and negatives. It’s easier to organize and support the entire population, but you could say that it’s easier to get infected. There isn’t much space between us, at least in Copenhagen, and during the past two days, I have noticed groups of people in the parks and large groups of people running around the lakes.
Before the virus hit we were getting rainy day after rainy day in Denmark. I was waking up and thinking, “Oh, fuck. Another day at home then.” Nobody wanted to leave the house. But now? Can you guess how the weather has changed? Yep, we’re quarantined and staying at home while outside the sun is smiling in the sky as if mocking us. Are we being punished for something here?
I miss the gym. I miss the sounds, the pumping music and the sweaty smell of the red-faced gym-rats (myself included) as we hop from machine to machine without saying a word to each other. Wait what was that? Without saying a word to each other?
That’s right. If you’re also a gym-rat, then you’ll know what I am talking about. You know, when you go to the gym, you’ll see some friends training together, possibly a couple here and there, and then you’ll see all the other guys and girls. You know the ones. The ones that are terrified to make eye-contact and the ones who walk through the gym with confidence while sipping their water and gazing in the mirror.
My point is that strangers don’t talk. Of course, I cannot speak for the entire world here. I had a completely different experience in a gym in Argentina. The garrulous Latinos were always willing to strike up a conversation. They thrive on it. It was a nice experience in the Argentine gym because everyone would greet me. They wouldn’t necessarily say hello, but most people would at least make eye contact and smile.
So, my Argentine friends. Don’t ever stop being yourselves and use your talkative nature to strike up conversations during this period of quarantine. Keep your language flowing, and find some language partners online. They may have squashed us into our homes, but they will never keep us quiet.