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Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby waggawerewolf27 » May 14, 2020 4:45 pm

IloveFauns wrote:Yes, the Ruby Princess was a disaster for NSW. South Australia, Western Australia, Northern Territory, Queensland, and Tassy have had many days of zero cases. In WA, we have had one known case in the past 10 days and this case was someone returning from overseas. This is one time in my life that I am thankful for living in the most isolated city in the world. I hope NSW and Vic get their cases under control soon. Although, compared to the majority of the world, cases in these states are very minimum.


:ymhug: It is lovely to hear from you, IlF, & glad to hear you are okay. :D Yes it is a bit isolated in Western Australia. From today some of the restrictions we have been having are being lifted, & restaurants, pubs etc can have up to ten patrons at a time. Many of these businesses point out that such low patronage isn't really viable. They are still dithering around about school attendance & maybe in a week or two TAFE will be restarting for apprentices, because for so many jobs there needs to be "hands-on" learning in suitable learning installations. It is not only the teachers, many of them being both casual & seasonal, it is also the ancillary staff, such as the canteens there to cater for any students, attending classes, who have suffered.

Meanwhile, at the bottom of Sydney Morning Herald's Column 8 a couple of days ago, it was reported that someone had seen a van with a notice on it saying "You lied! My children are not a joy to be in class". =)) There will be many parents, unused to the idea of home-schooling, who will be very relieved when school gets back to normal, & grateful for the put upon teachers. :D

In a new suburb called Caddens 2 km away, across the nearest large intersection, there is a retirement village, still in development only five years ago, which we had put our names down for, as it is close to all our local facilities. Unfortunately, the aged care facility has been the focus of media attention due to the COVID-19 deaths of about 16 of the elderly residents there. :( It is bad enough reading about the horror stories elsewhere, not only about the Ruby Princess, but it still is intensely sobering when it comes to one's own neighbourhood.

johobbit wrote:The world is changed. I feel it in the isolation. I feel it in the quiet. I smell it in the air. Much that once was is lost; and many now live who remember it. ;)


Yes, & winter is coming, too. Not a good time for our oven to pack up & become unfunctionable. But let us look on the bright side. :) It will save electricity consumption at any rate. ;)
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby Courtenay » May 15, 2020 4:41 am

We're having some restrictions lifted in England, sort of — some parks are re-opening, some people are allowed to go back to work, people from different households can meet up if they stay two metres apart, and so on. It's all a bit vague and nebulous, though. None of it makes much difference to me personally, as I've had my full time job all through this and very little has changed about that, except for heightened requirements for hand-washing and sanitising and PPE, as well as very strong restrictions on visitors at our care facility and quarantine requirements for anyone coming back from overseas or from any distance away. Happily, all our staff and residents have stayed well and safe throughout all this. (And my family back in Australia are all well too.)

The hardest part, really, has been our management's understandable and wise decision that we live-in staff mustn't go outside our grounds at all except within walking distance for exercise — no driving anywhere or going shopping at all (but we can order our own personal shopping with our facility's weekly grocery order from the supermarket, which is a relief). But things could be far, far worse and I'm so grateful for all we've got. Most of all, it's such a blessing to be living and working in a community where we're all supporting one another in prayer and knowing that God's love is sustaining us and the wider world through these difficult times.

If there's one good thing in this "Dark Island of Covid-19", I would say it's that it's brought on such an outpouring of love and gratitude in the wider community for all those "key workers" who are doing all they can to help bring us through, from those working in hospitals and care homes to those who are keeping our supermarkets stocked or collecting our garbage or whatever else is needed to keep society functioning. I was in central London this week for a home nursing visit and while it was strange to see the streets almost empty and most of the shops closed and shuttered, there are posters and billboards everywhere with inspiring and encouraging messages. Some I saw were "Please believe these days will pass"; "Be kind. Let's look out for one another"; "Let's thank our NHS heroes" (that's the UK's National Health Service) — and one quote for which I couldn't make out the attribution, but this is basically what it said: "Everything will be okay in the end. If it's not okay, it's not the end." I hope that when this dark time does pass — as it will! — we'll find we're living in a kinder, more inter-connected and more caring world than we were before.
"Now you are a lioness," said Aslan. "And now all Narnia will be renewed." (Prince Caspian)
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby waggawerewolf27 » May 16, 2020 3:00 am

Courtenay wrote:I hope that when this dark time does pass — as it will! — we'll find we're living in a kinder, more inter-connected and more caring world than we were before.


I couldn't have said it better. Thank you!
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby Col Klink » May 20, 2020 10:11 am

The hardest part, really, has been our management's understandable and wise decision that we live-in staff mustn't go outside our grounds at all except within walking distance for exercise — no driving anywhere or going shopping at all (but we can order our own personal shopping with our facility's weekly grocery order from the supermarket, which is a relief).


Sounds like a bummer.

The hardest part for me has been the library being closed. It should be partially opened next month. But it's pretty far away from where I live. (My family only goes there every two weeks.) And by the time I arrive, the maximum people allowed inside will probably be there already.

I have tons of books at home. But I'm not in the mood to read any of them. All I can think of are the books at the library I want to get. (Roughly 8 plus DVDs.) They're like an itch that I can't scratch.

I really shouldn't complain. Neither I nor anyone I'm close to has gotten sick. I have all this technology at my fingertips to keep me entertained and keep me in contact with my distant friends. Compared to people during the Black Plague, I'm in Paradise. But frankly I've been counting all these blessings for months and I'm a little sick of the exercise. :p

On a more cheerful note, Tony Shalhoub has appeared in a YouTube video in which he plays his character from Monk, my favorite TV show, navigating quarantine. It's part of a series of videos thanking health workers. It's really funny. (The video, I mean, not wanting to thank people.)
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby fantasia » May 20, 2020 11:11 am

Col Klink wrote: It should be partially opened next month. But it's pretty far away from where I live. (My family only goes there every two weeks.) And by the time I arrive, the maximum people allowed inside will probably be there already.


Our library semi-opened yesterday. They're not allowing anybody inside, but they are doing online reservations and then you can pick up from the parking lot.
Do you have a smart phone? There are apps out there that let you check out books and read them digitally. I use Libby.
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby Col Klink » May 20, 2020 11:37 am

My library hasn't worked out the details yet. They should announce them pretty soon though. They want currently checked out items to be returned June 1.
For better or worse-for who knows what may unfold from a chrysalis?-hope was left behind.
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby coracle » May 20, 2020 6:18 pm

My country has recently lifted its lockdown to the second-lowest level, allowing lots of businesses, including hospitality, to open, but with specific rules that help maintain low contact rates. It also means schools have reopened for most children this week.

We have had four days with no new cases, which is a reflection on the previous level, and it's encouraging.
Lots of tourism businesses have lost income, so while our borders are closed we are being encouraged to be tourists in our own country.
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby Courtenay » May 22, 2020 11:15 am

I'm so glad to hear things are easing up in New Zealand and Australia, at least. I'm sometimes tempted to wish I could be back in Australia right now, but it's a very long way to go and I'm pretty sure they wouldn't let me in! :p Not without at least two weeks of quarantine, that is.

Meanwhile, among the posters I mentioned that I've been seeing in London when I've had to drive there recently, there's a poem that's been posted in several places, which I'd glimpsed many times and wanted to read it properly, but I've never had the car stopped long enough, especially as the poem goes across four large poster pages. This afternoon, though, while waiting at traffic lights, I managed to whip out my phone and snap a photo of the poem, which turned out clear enough for me to read it at last, so I just wanted to share it here as well.

To give some context, the NHS is the UK's National Health Service, which has been doing an AMAZING job looking after all those who've been needing medical help during the pandemic. Ever since the lockdown started in March, it's become a weekly tradition for everyone to come out of their houses, or lean out of their windows, at 8 pm every Thursday and spend about 5 minutes clapping for the NHS and all other "key workers" who are helping to keep people safe and keep the country running. It's a little ironic that a crisis that is forcing us to stay apart from others is at the same time bringing us closer together in spirit, but that really is the effect — there's so much love and appreciation being shown in our communities and, as I said before, I hope that continues even after life goes back to "normal".

Anyway, here's the poem from the posters (copied verbatim — it's printed all in capitals and with the punctuation and line breaks as shown). As you can see, it's doggerel, but very heartfelt and indeed very London! ;)

A QUIET PRAYER
HOLDS OVER
LONDON
THE TREES
BECOME OUR
CITIZENS &
GUARDIANS
IN THE WIND
THE TREES
HOLD
THEIR OWN
SILENT RIOT
IN OUR
HONOUR

WE ARE STOPPED
TO APPRECIATE
THE PEOPLE WHO
CARE FOR US /
A TENDER
PERCUSSION
ORCHESTRA OF
APPLAUSE JOINS
THE COUNTRY — A
FAIRY LIGHT NET
OF KINDNESS.
WE TRY OUR BEST
WE LOVE OUR
NHS.

LISTEN CLOSE
IN THE SKY
ABOVE YOU
WILL HEAR THE
POUNDING
HORSES OF
LOVE.

WE TRY OUR
VERY BEST /
WE LOVE
OUR
NHS
.
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby The Old Maid » May 26, 2020 8:21 am

@TOM wrote:

As difficult as this is, this is not a Biblical plague. Plagues cannot be stopped by anything other than repenting. People living on the space station for the past year, before this disease existed, would still get it. But they don't, because it isn't.


@wagga wrote:

I know what you are saying was jesting to lighten the mood here. :) But many a true word is said in jest. :D In a manner of speaking today's plague is still just as much a plague as biblical plagues were, nationally & worldwide, if you think about it. One of the activities I've enjoyed in the last six weeks was to re-read a book called Germs, Genes & Civilization, by a microbiologist called David P. Clark, which discusses the transmission of such plagues & their outcomes throughout the ages.

[and much other fine commentary :)


(There is a similar but not identical series called Guns, Germs, and Steel.)

What I mean is that this disease, though horrible, is not a divine smiting. God is not weeding out the sinners; God is not sparing the faithful. Therefore, I would say that God didn't start this.

Does anyone recall the aftermath of hurricanes, for example? There are always those observers who claim that God sent the hurricane to smite the sinners. I do not agree with them.

If you use your search engine to research the quoted phrase "Jesus is my vaccine!", you will see what I mean. Please bring your airsickness bags, because some of the taunting will make you ill.
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby Cleander » May 26, 2020 1:47 pm

@OldMaid: I agree that this is not a Biblical plague.The "rain falls on the just and the unjust."
If this virus ends up encouraging some people to take life/death/God/everything more seriously, then I'm sure that's probably what God intended for them. But to say this is all just an elaborate punishment is at the least a slight presumption, akin to how Job's friends in the Bible (in the book of Job btw ;) )assessed his troubles by saying God must be punishing Job for some sin in his life. We can't definitely say what God's purpose is.
However, I do believe God ordains all things. Isaiah 45:7 says " I form light and create darkness, I make well being and create calamity, I am the Lord, who does all these things."
God is sovereign over all things, even disaster.
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby waggawerewolf27 » May 26, 2020 5:22 pm

The Old Maid wrote:What I mean is that this disease, though horrible, is not a divine smiting. God is not weeding out the sinners; God is not sparing the faithful. Therefore, I would say that God didn't start this.


On the other hand, the microbiologist, who wrote Germs, Genes & Civilization, noted that what spread belief in Christianity most, was the idea of service to others, practised by noble women in the late Roman Empire, & by many in lower ranks of its clergy. It was corrupt, self-serving behaviour of some leaders of the church which did most to damage such belief, not only those godless leaders who persecute religion.

In our last 2018 election campaigns, there seemed to be panicking about so-called "global warming". Those parties who embraced such panicking seemed almost like they were trying to establish a new religion: Fall down & believe what we say about targets for ten years hence, or you will not be saved, sort of thing. Such panicking over dire predictions of future disaster, is not the answer to overcoming present disasters, really, & can lead to injustice all around, especially in politics. I do agree that wasn't God's punishment that brought about those bushfires out of hell, that eventuated, when human carelessness on the one hand & when failure to obey laws, & outright criminality, on the other hand, also contributed to their ferocity.

I think that all too often, God gets blamed for anything we are ignorant about & which is beyond human control. Thus insurance firms may not pay out to help people recover from what they refer to as an "Act of God". The turbulence of this planet, weather wise, is part of an ongoing geological & meteorological process which is beyond human control, for example. However, we can still moderate our own behaviour to help bring down smog & air pollution, by keeping our cars well maintained, so that they don't belch noxious fumes, by driving within the speed limits, & by planning new houses & renovations for a more sustainable future. That includes not building new houses right on a beach or a riverbank, for example.

I can still thank God most sincerely when the bushfires were finally put out, & there was enough rain to ease the water restrictions. And one of the most compelling images in Revelation still remains: The four horsemen of the Apocalypse. That is to say, Law & Dissent, market forces, & the inevitability of death. The horsemen, themselves, are considered as agents of God, neither good or nor evil.
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby coracle » May 26, 2020 8:31 pm

Having lived through 15000 earthquakes in my city, some of them responsible for damaging my home, covering my garden with several inches of grey silt three times, and causing huge destruction across the city in 2011, I know that looking for reasons WHY is not helpful.

Could I suggest that we go back to the topic, and talk about what is HELPFUL, how we are each managing, things we have learned, and even the humour and fun we have enjoyed?

One of the joys for me during the last two months has been watching the fruit ripen and be ready to pick/gather, as Autumn turns towards Winter.
I have been free to put in dozens of bulbs for spring flowering (some of them were stored over the last few years, and I will find out what they are in a few months!), look out at the gorgeous roses still growing on some of my bushes (especially Top Brass, an apricot colour, bought for my old Narnia themed garden, to represent High King Peter), and be amazed at the thick growth of red fire-berries on a bush also bought for a Narnia theme.
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby Sun-muffin » May 26, 2020 9:17 pm

I’m brand new here, but thought I’d jump in anyway, with just some things I’ve been thinking and doing throughout this strange time.
I and my family went to see the Logos production of a peep behind the scenes just before everything shut down, and remembering that and singing the songs has been a very happy bright spot for us in the middle of all the uncertainty. There have definitely been hard moments, and stress filled ones, but there have been wonderful moments of deep conversations, reading and praying together, and increased creativity.
I’ve begun embroidering more things, some that are definitely way outside of my skill level, and helping my mom set her garden to order. The squirrels keep eating her sunflowers, but we have some that are surviving!
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby waggawerewolf27 » May 28, 2020 5:31 pm

There really is light dissipating the fog somewhat. :D The NRL (National Rugby League) competition has resumed, shops are reopening, & though hours have been cut for the time, one of our daughters has been able to go back to her job. Pubs, clubs, eat-in restaurants etc are opening once again, & churches are allowed congregations of up to fifty people, now.

But still no library services? I wonder...... /:)

Some of the measures mentioned here, I could do with, such as reservations etc.
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby fantasia » May 29, 2020 7:02 pm

I'm sorry for those of you who still have no library services. :(

This week our Governor returned power to the individual counties of our state. That made me very happy. :) There are some counties that have no active cases at all, and some counties (our meat packing counties that got hit sooo hard) that probably shouldn't resume normal life any time soon.

Our county is letting up a little bit. In fact, I think the only things that are still closed are the big gathering places like sports arenas and such. My husband and I are watching to see if we have a resurgence in cases. The places that are opening are, for the most part, adhering to various social distancing laws. Our kids gymnastics opened this week, but my husband and I declined to return to that. Too many kids who don't understand hygiene touching all the same things.
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Re: Navigating the Dark Island of the Covid-19

Postby johobbit » May 31, 2020 5:37 am

Welcome to NarniaWeb, Sun-muffin! :D (I know what you mean about squirrels and sunflowers. :P I have started sprinkling Bloodmeal (or Irish Spring soap, crumbled up) where I have planted seeds, otherwise those active little critters tend to nab 'em. /:) )

We are still working as a Province on re-opening. The Premier has not given this responsibilty to each County yet, but many are wishing he would.

Our restrictions have been extended to June 9, and then we shall see. Two weeks ago, it was announced that schools would be closed for the remainder of the year. (Our JK - 12 school year goes from Sept through June.) Québec, who was hit the hardest with COVID in all of Canada, opened up some of their schools. We were very surprised. Now they are paying for it, as some staff and students have contracted the virus already. :(

As a family, we are planning a gathering at our place for Father's Day weekend (June 19-22), IF the restriction for 5 or less people gathering is lifted by that time. It's also our youngest son's 27th birthday, so we are all really hoping we can be together, but we shall see. If this works out, we will still be very careful. At least it is the time of year when we can be outside much of the time.
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