May 11, 2020
The Victorian Government is on the verge of progressively relaxing the lockdown as the number of deaths from the COVID 19 pandemic subsides in the state of Victoria. Victoria, and Australia more broadly, has been resolute in taking steps to prevent the virus from spreading. In a country of over twenty-five million we have had fewer than one hundred deaths. When compared with Europe and the United States of America it has to be an outstanding result. In Victoria the polls show that 76% of the population support the actions of the Government and the Premier, Daniel Andrews, in particular. Fewer than one hundred people protested against the lockdowns with many citing debunked conspiracy theories about the cause of the virus. It is beyond belief that they cite the 5G telecommunications network, Bill Gates, the Chinese Government and no doubt anything else that populates their small minds. The anti-vaxxers are on the rampage as well by sprouting their own conspiracy theories and one can only hope that the severity of the world wide pandemic causes some of them to realise that they are a hazzard not only to themselves but to the population at large.
Even though we have been confined to "barracks" life has been really good. Online tools have allowed us to catch up with friends, play bridge and we have managed to catch up on classic films that we missed when they first came around. We have had our fill of Donald Trump's incredible stupidity on YouTube and we now have a vast collection of 'memes' that have made us laugh. We are eating particularly well: in fact we are eating so well that we miss being able to take strenuous exercise to take off the calories.
We had planned a cruise with Cunard from Vancouver to Alaska and back in June, 2020 but we managed to defer that until June/July 2021. Even though it's twelve months away I am still nervous to take any cruise at all. We are thinking of cancelling the cruise and taking the ferry from Vancouver to Juneau along the Alaska Marine State Highway. We would stay in Juneau and take day trips to see the glaciers, whales and surrounds which could allow us to see more than we would if we were on a large ship cruise. We are also booked on the Rocky Mountaineer from Vancouver to Banff, the most expensive two day trip with one overnight stay in the world.
Hopefully our golf group will be able to play starting in the next day or so, but I fear that the Real Tennis courts will be closed for a while yet. We miss watching the plays at the Melbourne Theatre Company and the Melbourne International Film Festival will hopefully be available online for the normal three weeks in August.
I hope this pandemic will change the way people conduct their lives. It has been amazing to see how cities are no longer shrouded in pollution and the amount of carbon dioxide put into the atmosphere must have reduced with the limited international and domestic travel. Whether there will be a reduction in materialism or not remains to be seen but hopefully the population has seen that life can be conducted in a simpler way.