Throughout history, there have been all kinds of natural disasters that impact certain corners of the world. The area that was directly hit goes into survival mode while the rest of the world offers support and follows the news. The COVID-19 pandemic is different because literally every country has been impacted. Yes, some countries are going through more difficult times than others but this is the only time in modern history when everyone has become impacted by shutdowns and the new normal of social distancing and quarantine.
Quarantine is often used to keep sick patients isolated from the rest of the population and their immediate families. However, with COVID-19, much of the global population has gone into quarantine even though they aren’t sick. There is so much that is still unknown about the virus and quarantining is an effective course of action for flattening the curve. Of course, being in quarantine doesn’t actually mean staying indoors. There is still grocery shopping that is needed. One thing is for sure, the global quarantine has revealed what matters to certain nations and cultures.
In Paris, the French government requires anyone who leaves their home to have a signed form justifying their trip outside. It’s like writing your own permission slip. While all non-essential businesses have been shuttered, the French Health Ministry has made a list of 40 exceptions. At the top of that list are the famed boulangeries. These are the French bakeries who are producing daily allotments of the country’s beloved French baguette. Social distancing and masks are in full effect but nothing will keep the French from their baguettes.
The Berlin nightlife is legendary. Locals and visitors flock to clubs for all night dancing and fun. That was all immediately shut off when the stay-at-home orders went into effect. Hoping to fill the gap, the government-backed an initiative called United We Stream or UWS. This is an association of 245 independent clubs who set up live streams. Of course, those streams are just all about the music but residents can tap in and enjoy their own techno-dance party.
In Britain, the neighborhood pub is more than just a place to grab a pint after work. It is like a community center where friends and neighbors can catch up and relax. With the pubs close, the patrons have taken to setting up their own virtual happy hours. How popular are these gatherings? A single pub in Dundee has a list of 13,000 patrons who pop in for their virtual happy hours.
Camping is a big part of Australian life. That is especially true during the Easter season. Now, the Caravan Industry of Australia has been encouraging everyone to camp in their backyards. Without a yard, Australians are also camping out in their living rooms. There are also live streams from the Melbourne Zoo and Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary to help provide a virtual dose of wildlife.