It was somewhere in January 2020, when I first heard of a deadly virus called Corona, affecting numerous people in China. I was in Germany then (semester-exchange) and didn’t bother to give much attention to it, since I was too busy with my course work and in planning trips to beautiful places across Europe, oblivious of the fact that the world is soon going to be under lockdown.
Luckily, I completed my semester exams by mid-February 2020 and was to come back to India, when I again heard of the virus, this time, it was called Covid-19 and was a much more serious affair than I had expected in January. The gravity of the matter could be realized from my surroundings, the fear among the people, the mails from the University asking to maintain social distancing and staying alert of any symptoms, and my parents showing concern about me going to the crowded airports. Amidst all this tiny chaos, I had still assumed that the virus won’t be able to cross the China borders.
Airports seemed to be as usual with some people wearing masks, and some others staring at their strange new look. I was so excited to go back home that there was no room for worry in my mind. From Germany to India with co-passengers from all over the world, I was busy enjoying my window seat, recapitulating all the memories of Europe.
The news of the virus was spreading like fire. Everywhere I went, it was the only topic being discussed, and this process, in some sense, really made me think. Every day, the number of cases in India (and the world) was increasing exponentially, and within a few weeks that I had joined my college in India, we were sent home because of the govt. guidelines keeping in mind the risks of the virus spreading amongst the students. The semester was cut in-between, with no planned alternatives to continue the teaching. Schools and universities were closed in almost all parts of the world for an indefinite time period…
The world was hit by a pandemic! Something, that it had never seen before. Humans were caged in their homes, encountering huge loss, some in terms of money, some in terms of health, and the government trying hard to come up with all kinds of safety measures. The fast and furious pace of life was brought to a halt by a microscopic being.
Technology indeed played a crucial role in these times. MNCs, govt. offices and educational institutes soon adapted to the virtual mode of communication and events (from schooling to weddings) that only used to happen in an in-person mode, were now being held online. Sanitizers and masks became an everyday utility and strict measures were imposed on any kind of gatherings. The world also experienced a time when all the transportation was stopped, local trains as well as international flights.
With technology coming to the rescue in such times, there’s more to ponder upon. The pandemic brought many people home, giving them time to think about the delightful gift of life, that of family and friends, and the need to celebrate their existence every day. This new mode of life has definitely made us stronger and loving, as some people rightly address it as “nature’s way of reminding humans of humanity!”