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 Seven Hundred Sixteen

One week of war and a new world order and another week of the Dread Lord Grippe Reborn. We have almost forgotten his existence with all the terrible news coming from Ukraine and the dread that it will engulf us all in a conflagration. Yet he persists, no doubt delighted by our inattention, our tired eyes unwilling to look any longer.

In these parts with March upon us, the last of the restrictions has been lifted. Masks are no longer required and gatherings of any size are allowed. We shall see what the results of that are. Some will remain cautious still, of course, but most are happy to be done with all this. I was out yesterday for a coffee and no one who entered the cafe wore a mask and it was the same when I went to get a sandwich for lunch. On our walks to my love’s work in the morning the streets are much busier than they have been as people begin the return to their offices. The institution I work for has announced a graduated return with flexibility, so we shall see when I am asked to go back.

It is strange how normal everything appears after two years of mostly living under quarantine strictures. I suppose last summer it was much the same, but that felt very different. Then it was a comfort and a celebration. We had just been inoculated and the future it seemed was ours. That ended in disaster and so now I am wary rather than hopeful. The Grippe Reborn has more guises to adopt, more tricks to play and we shall not be free of him for a good long while it seems. If I thought our government’s would be more willing to respond to that eventuality I would feel more comfortable, but I do not.

They have proven themselves feckless and callow, both in this crisis and the crisis engulfing Ukraine. It has been obvious for a long time what Putin was and yet he was allowed to take and take in Ukraine and Georgia and Belarus and elsewhere. His cronies were welcomed with open arms so long as they had money to offer, money stolen from the country and its future. Now, at least, they seem to realize the gravity of their earlier mistakes and are willing to take a strong stand. It almost gives one hope.

As always, things can get worse. They can also get better, but it is hard remember that, let alone keep any faith in it. The future remains unwritten.

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