A Stay-at-Home Virus Blog
As many of us were celebrating New Year's Eve and looking forward to a better 2020, China reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) that they had an "unusual pneumonia" in the city of Wuhan. Within three weeks, by January 20th 2020 or so, everyone started to understand the magnitude of the problem, but we had no idea what was in store next. Only a few people had died at that point but a test was created and quickly the number of was doubling every day. We learned that the source of virus were bats, but now it was being passed from human to human and we would quickly learn that this virus was quite the committed world traveler.
It took me another whole week before I started to comprehend just how serious this was. Frankly I was only paying half attention until I learned that they closed Hong Kong Disneyland. That made it real. That made it serious.
Then the first person died outside of China (February 2nd). By February 7th, the young doctor in Wuhan who first raised the alarm bells, succumbed to the disease.
The following week China saw the total infected reached 60,000, but then the daily new cases started to drop. They seemed to have a handle on things and I got distracted again. But shortly thereafter we started hearing about South Korea, Japan and then a week later Italy (February 21st).
China and South Korea seemed to overreact. They quarantined and isolated millions and millions of people. And yet this approach would quickly be seen as the best solution. Italy wouldn't issue its first regional quarantine until March 8th and I thought to myself, that could never happen in the US. It just wasn't possible. A national Italian quarantine would follow and then rules allowing only grocery stores and pharmacies to remain open.
The week of February 24th, I was at a tradeshow in close contact with people from around the world. The news was ramping up about the virus, but it wasn't until the end of that week that I was worrying about my mother traveling on an airplane to visit us. She wore a mask on the plane (although when I saw her, the mask was around her neck, not her face). We had a nice visit but then the next few weeks moved in slow motion. I was still more focused on the Presidential election, but that would quickly change.
What follows is my Virus Blog where you can start from the beginning or read my latest update: December 31, 2020
© Greg Harris, 2020
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