With a number of our Italian friends in isolation, my brother about to return from a trip to Vietnam, Walter & I due to move house and head to South Africa to visit relatives and friends, and my mother in the high risk category due to her age, COVID-19 is affecting us far more than we’d prefer. Even if not nearly as much as those impacted directly.
My heart goes out to those living in places like Italy, that feel as though they have been shunned by the rest of the world. Some are overworked and stressed, others do not have sufficient demand for their products to keep their businesses open. They cannot spend time in bars, restaurants and piazzas – an integral part of the culture. They have to queue outside the supermarket, entering only two people at a time.
A country is not a piece of land but an accumulation of people, a community of individuals that have feelings, concerns, jobs, homes and families. I pray that in the days ahead as we navigate the uncertainties of a situation that we haven’t experienced before, that we would love and support each other, acknowledging that many around us are struggling in their own way.
There is strength in solidarity, power in unity. Let the old saying “United we stand, divided we fall” be our motto. May we stand together even if physically apart.