Daily coronavirus-related chat, questions, and minor updates - March 29
This thread is posted daily, and is intended as a place for more-casual discussion of the coronavirus and questions/updates that may not warrant their own dedicated topics. Tell us about what the situation is like where you live!
Went on my weekly early Sunday morning store run today. Things are definitely getting better there. Though the selection was limited, pretty much all staples were available in some form, including toilet paper. I didn't check to see if there was hand soap or sanitizer but I'm getting more confident that if I did need those things I would be able to find them.
On the home front, my job has told me they will be able to onboard me remotely, and they're shipping me a computer to use for work, so I am pretty excited about that. Starting remotely means I get to avoid moving before my lease is over, and hopefully even after things return to normal I'll be able to work from home if I want to.
I made a separate thread for it, but my husband and I used a service called Jitsi Meet to do a video dinner and game night with his family, and it worked perfectly. We've also used it as an open audio chatroom during gaming (similar to how we would use Discord). I like it better than Zoom, and it doesn't have a time limit like Zoom does on its free plan.
I set up times this week to do a distance gaming night with friends, and we've got a video chat night with my family set up for next weekend. I think this style of interaction is going to become the new normal for us for a while.
Overall, my anxiety levels have gone down, though the situation in the US has gotten much worse. I've done a lot of "focus on only what you can control"-type thinking that has helped me realize that my husband and I have been doing the right thing for a while now (we've been in self-isolation for over two weeks now). I am also trying to appreciate my (small) positive impact via my early warnings to friends, family, colleagues, and my students. I know I helped a lot of people get ahead of things and take this seriously, which is paying off for them now that things have really ramped up.
I have also stopped reading most news articles about it because a lot of the ones that focused on the specific trauma of the disease were deeply distressing and were making me question every cough, ache, or discomfort in my body. Even the slightest, most mundane tickle in my throat would fill me with a paralyzing dread. I still check the numbers regularly, both overall and for different regions, but I'm spending a lot less of my time following all of the developments, as at this point I know the most important thing that I need to know, which is simply to stay home.
I'm a news junkie, and I'm also rationing my intake of news. One thing I avoid in particular is the stories about "my experience with the coronavirus". I do not need to read someone's personal description of getting sick. That puts images in my head that are not good for me. I'm better off focussing on big-picture issues like stimulus packages and government policies.
Spain has passed Italy in cases per capita and both are now above 1500 cases per million. I find those pretty important milestones.
Over here in Brazil, a government agency called SECOM made a post downplaying the coronavirus with the slogan #Brazilcannotstop. People memed/went livid over it and they erased the post and claimed they never made it. Every right-wing President is committing the same mistakes and dealing with them the same way and probably all of with the same objective, which is probably put an end to the idea of truth and then use it to end democracy.
As for the actual virus over here, here are the numbers:
Figured you folks would like to know that, despite President Putin's advice, people in Russia – at least here in Siberia which hasn't been affected by COVID-19 as much as Moscow – continue about their lives the way they have been before: that is, going out, spending time with others, and decidedly not sitting at home with a week's load of food.
Well, maybe somebody does, but it's not a large number, relatively or absolutely.
I found this news page last week, which counts official cases of the coronavirus in Australia on a daily basis.
It's heartening to see that the number of new cases over the past week, apart from one daily spike, have stabilised and even seem to be decreasing. This means our infection growth is linear, rather than exponential.
Two weeks ago, the Australian government imposed a 14-day quarantine on everyone entering the country. That means that, mostly, the infection numbers from now on will reflect community transmission rather than imported cases. And they're dropping. Social distancing is working. The curve is being flattened.
Of course, it's early days yet. But it's a small win for now.
Houston, Texas. Today is the last day of my vacation. I go back to work tomorrow. Wish me luck Tildes!
Went to the store today, it was bliss. It was a big morrisons where they only allowed 40 people in the store at once and they had most of everything stocked. There was no need to move out of people's way, or wait for people in your way, I browsed at a leisurely pace. They should keep the 40 customers max rule permanently.