Those outside the matrix hit the big red emergency stop button, the world needed a pause/a reset, we were going too fast for all the wrong reasons.
With it came the catastrophe of suffering, death, quick and slow, ruin, personal and that of small and big businesses. When we had a great plan for the year, and lots of panache and speed, still in February, it came to a standstill. When this is over the lost tens of trillions of Dollars will be counted.
There is Angst, I fear for my family and myself, so we are at home, staying put. But I am not letting go so fast of my creation, a small still developing dedicated company. We nursing it, are engaged in re-planning, adapting to the situation and preparing for the after, and with a bit of luck we will belong to the lucky group that will thrive after. Many mentions of luck in here, — but for many the near and longer future has become the great unknown. On a personal scale it centers around what will we eat, where will we live, whether school restarts, how the new after is going to be, when will it be, in fall, this or next year?
A long time ago I quit my banking job, I was 39, independent and in need for a change and so I pressed the reset button myself. I quit the treadmill, I quit the Hektomatik world of finance, stepped out into the unknown of an overland journey without end date for a chance of a change to a different life. (spoiler: it worked out, I changed, life changed, I founded a start-up company and a second one, I work in renewables, I am living a different life on a different continent).
As Corona strikes the overall hustling to make it in life stopped for all and for all at once. With it came a weird for most an unknown feeling, just I felt that feeling before. Only this time not just I changed but the whole world, and it was not anybody’s plan, but the fault of one pangolin, the ultimate goddess of the butterflies so known for being capable of ripping it all apart with a little flap of just one wing.
With the great break and the onslaught of the great crises, shyly we are announced a once in a lifetime gift. We have time and we are spending it with our families. I realize the colors of my daughter’s eyes, the curly of her hair, the way she walks and smiles, how she has grown to be a toddler from a baby a few months ago. I didn’t realize, I was busy.
Years have passed since probably my travelling years that I laid down on a roof top and stare at the skies, noticed there were clouds and birds, and they move, now that the traffic has stopped, highways and through fares lie barren and the birds they, what a surprise, now chirp.
What 25 COP and thousands of related conferences of tens of thousands of jet-setting ministers, expert speakers, clowns and figureheads have not accomplished, the Corona virus has done in 2 months.
CO2 emission in the atmosphere are falling for the first time since the dip that followed the financial crises in 2008. This time shall be different, we might have seen peak emissions.
The earth’s climate got its break as intended by the Gods of the matrix, without requiring us earthlings to do a thing, and now even the baby sea turtles can hatch in peace on these deserted beaches.
Those of us who will come out of this alive will have a choice, and it maybe a more difficult one than whether to bail out the cruise ship line, airline or hotel chain whether owned by a president or not.
The suffering and trauma and slow healing will weigh heavily and millions will be scrambling to get food on the plates without much chance to earn a wage. We are most likely set up for a difficult future, physically, psychologically and emotionally, economically and financially, that requires more radical resolutions like free healthcare and income distribution/sharing or else many more in our community will suffer/die, as many jobs will never come back. We are a community, no?
The jobs are gone as these tens of thousands of planes will not go back flying in the near future. These cruise ships won’t set sail again next year. These conferences organizing marketing whiz-shops, that sold us events, sponsor/speaker roles from Kigali to Riyad and Ulaanbaatar, already have seen their basis for existence evaporate. Schools will look different, most business trips unnecessary, do it through the web, meet in the virtual space. This may well be another industrial revolution nobody saw coming.
Small businesses with physical premises, like restaurants and hotels will run aground before this is over, how long can you pay rent without any sales? Some look for creative ways through the crises, like delivering food to health care staff. In general customers will have second thoughts for a while, how can I enjoy going to a packed restaurant, sleep in a hotel bed, go to a concert/cinema/football game/church or mosque? Even when restrictions are eventually lifted demand will not be back soon, not without an effective cocktail of tests/different tests/drugs/vaccines/tracking apps/and more to fight the resurgence of the virus. We will accept those tracing apps, prioritizing health over freedom.
So how do we keep busy till, and what will we change when we restart the planet?
In this great pause we shall have the most thorough look at ourselves, our community and country. In the short and medium run, we might as well take some bold decisions on a few matters, — before we might eventually return to the hustling where we were because of our stubborn unwillingness to learn.
These bold decisions could affect health care for all or climate change issues such as sustainable waste management, renewable energy, support of such projects through and based on carbon financing, and the likes. We might want to make up for all the lost time intelligently; maybe the situation will guide us to find a way to have a less deadly daily effect on the planet.
As one so very well know politician in the field put it felicitously recently, there is “a clear parallel between the pandemic and climate change — don’t’ wait until it’s too late”.