I keep trying to remember that all pandemics are finite. I wonder whether that's a consolation. So history shows that each pandemic ends one way or another. The Spanish flu ended in 1918, as WW I ended, because it was the war that got it going in the first place.
But it's a bit different with the covid. I read and try to understand and what I can figure out is that, yes, we need the vaccines, all of them, but we shouldn't put our hopes on that with a vaccine all will be well.
It doesn't help anyone in the wealthy North/West if we are all vaccinated and the mutations then come to us from Africa because there is a lack of vaccines there.
Most new infectious diseases are transmitted from animals to humans. In recent years alone: Ebola, Sars, Mers, Zika. You don't need to be an expert to see how this is due to the ongoing destruction of nature, climate change, extinction of species, factory farming.
We humans penetrate ever deeper into the natural habitat of wild animal populations. This increases the likelihood that new viral diseases will pass from animals to humans. Even if the fight against this pandemic is currently overshadowing everything, we have to face the larger ecological crisis behind it at the same time.
This is a long-term epidemic, after 12 months, obviously so and it has and will continue to change society and daily life. That's a good thing. I read that the bubonic plague which killed at least a third of the population of Europe in the 14th century (??) is responsible for our concept of public health. Pandemic as formative event, so to speak.
People ask me what I miss most and I am at a loss. Travel, eating out, going to a bookshop, a museum, it all sounds so trivial and vain when I hear of terrible cases of long covid, of family members dying within hours of each other. Of course, I want to visit my daughter, my grandchild. But for much longer than this pandemic, we have been talking about how things were spiralling out of control, have been plotting ways and campaigns and actions to enable our children's and grandchildren's future on a livable planet away from the old destructive normal.
Because the old normal has put us here, I want to shout. Our silly arrogance, our superiority complex. Let's be a tad more humble here and take our place, our teeny tiny place on the planet with care and responsibility.