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Life Reflections

Even during bleak times there is cause for cheer

By August 8, 2021June 6th, 2023No Comments

Agust 6, 2021

And so it goes…….

That when this Covid-19 pandemic is blanketing us all in a vicious cloud of the unyielding, unwarranted and unwanted disease, dearth and death of our near and dear, someone would find something positive about it.

“Positive” itself has turned into a dreaded word, when before it was to do with all things thumbs-up.

So, who in their right mind would say they enjoyed contracting this abhorrence, especially knowing how it keeps mutating into more lethal variants, the latest of which is said to be Delta (whoever thinks up these misplaced nice names!)?

Yet, paradoxically, when my friend explained his reasons, I concurred with him. And saw no reason for any ulterior intention for his statement.

You see, his little son was the first to get the contagion. So, when later the father also tested positive, and none else in the family, he was happy that the kid would get company in their isolation – maybe more of it, at that!

As old geezers, when our immunity is no longer what it used to be, some of us oldsters who caught the virus also found some cause for cheer – but for totally different reasons.

You consult a health officer and they swipe a swab around your throat or nostril and also get the details of your state of health and your contacts. When the answer comes, it’s to politely ask you to please note that you tested positive.

You’ve hardly finished reading the message when the phone alerts you and a doctor patiently takes you through all necessary steps. For self-isolation, self-treatment and of how to monitor your progress of recovery or otherwise, if you have the means.

They are available pronto 24/7, in case of that “otherwise”, says the good doctor. If no means, health officers are assigned to you, including a horde of community health workers in your sub-village (Isibo), all who will pamper you to no end.

And immediately, the concerned voice of a police officer on your mobile asks after your health, after which they ask for directions to your abode. They are by your side on the double, draping you with a GPS tracker watch and describing its use.

That watch, apart from showing your location and telling you the time and date, it counts your steps (for exercise), monitors your sleep, gives SMS messages and more. It even warns you once on a dangerous slope where you risk falling down (maybe somebody had me in mind?)!

All that aside, the concern and the care about your life from health officers, community workers, neighbours, all are something to sing to high heaven about.

Those who are afflicted by this viral infection, or any other disease, for that matter, and don’t tell all and sundry, do a disservice to humanity.

The Rwandan adage captures it best: “Ushaka gukira indwara arayirata”. Literally, that’d be to “flaunt your sickness if you want its treatment”. But that’d be missing the depth of its cultural literariness. In broader sense, then, telling all leads to helping people to get a cure for, or you getting tips from others on treatment of, any malady.

Never should it be seen as embarrassing oneself, whining, seeking sympathy, invoking undeserved entitlement, etc. In matters that will affect everybody at one time or another, we all should wear our hearts on our sleeves; be open at all times.

And those whose hearts ‘live’ on their sleeves should be seen for exactly that; being plain open-hearted souls, much as we must guard against cons.

When you have a leadership whose heart ‘dwells’ on its sleeve, the best you can do is emulate it, as citizens and residents.

Foreign watchers shouldn’t read into this some ulterior motive for some kind of favour-search, either. Search of gain, admiration; of seeking to be “a darling” of this or that power or anything else. Except being at the service of the good of the citizenry. And beyond that, the good of humanity at large, wherever the country’s modest means can permit, pure and simple.

The daily monitoring of Covid cases without forgetting other health issues; the multiplicity of health facilities; things like tracker watches; drones; robots; on and on. All these seek to optimise the service that the country’s workforce can render.

Throw in ‘little’ services like scattering the scattering of IS-affiliated gun-slinging bandits visiting havoc on the people in two weeks flat, to answer the call of a friendly country. Remember, that won’t have stopped our other ‘boys and girls’ from keeping the peace elsewhere where they have restored it.

If it’s not cause for cheer, despite these bleak Covid times, I don’t know what is.

Most importantly, as we console and empathise with our victims of this pandemic, we should find cheer in the fact that vaccines are beginning to reach more and more people. From the age of forty years and above, when the vaccines reach those aged thirty and above, we’ll almost be bidding this scourge bye.

Thus we’ll be fully available to give our ten cents to the cause of Pan-Africanism as well as connecting with the rest of the world.

As for our economy, it’ll be: “The sky, here we come!”

And so it goes……. 

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