Notes on the Grippe

Being an accounting of the recent and continuing pandemic and its various circumstances, from the perspective of an inhabitant of the regions lately called the Lost Quarter. Dates unknown.

Day Five Hundred Fifty Four

A momentous week in the Greater Dominions of Canada, yet as with everything in this time of the Dread Lord, it feels as though nothing has changed. We are living through the same days over and over again. Our government called a national election, hoping to capitalize on their popularity for their management of the Grippe Reborn. Instead, people were angry they had called it all. None of the other parties offered much in the way of a competing vision of the country. Nor, frankly, did the government. In the end we returned a minority government, much the same as the one that was already in place.

One cannot help but feel that our leaders, at every level, have failed miserably to rise to the occasion the Grippe Reborn has put us in. There have been modest victories here and there, competent management in some cases, but seemingly little else. It is as though the Dread Lord has set us adrift and we are floating through fog hoping we don’t run aground or strike any icebergs. There are signs everywhere that the world is undergoing dramatic shifts – climate change, the unravelling of the world order – but these are slow events, decades in the making. Just as the Grippe Reborn now seems to be something we shall be dealing with for a good long while. It seems fundamental then that we have leaders of vision, who are forward looking, yet the moment has revealed them all to be shallow wisps, interested only in power, with small ideas of little consequence.

Here in these parts the leader of the provincial government hid himself away for much of the campaign, worried that his appearance would impact the national Conservative party who was running against the governing Liberals. He left the province adrift for weeks as the Dread Lord rampaged throughout the territories. Only when the hospitals were about to be overwhelmed did he finally emerge to announce some restrictions and an inoculation protocol. It was what was needed a month ago, but at least it is here. The restrictions, as they always are with this government, are arcane, endless rules and exemptions, all arbitrary. You must stop selling alcohol by ten unless you dispense brandy, this sort of thing. The inoculation protocol is somehow even more shambolic, an easily editable document that anyone with moderate computer skills could fake.

The day before the election there was a protest near our home of those against the inoculation protocol and the restrictions. More than a thousand gathered in the park where my love and I were married to decry these new rules. They marched down the street crying for freedom. It was a depressing, infuriating sight. In the midst of the ruin of our health system, the cancellation of all non-emergency surgeries and procedures, there are people complaining that all this goes too far. How do you even reason with them?

Meanwhile, our provincial government seems more interested in political gain than in keeping us alive. What an absolute disaster, one that should never have happened. The election should have been for them, because they no longer deserve to hold office, let alone show their faces in these parts again.

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