Right now, I am sat in my apartment in the centre of Berlin, under self-isolation for another week. This is because two members of my family were last week in Switzerland and the city government has told us that anyone doing that has to stay indoors for a fortnight. The following weeks were supposed to see me in Riga, Magdeburg, Rome, and London. Every one of those trips has now been cancelled.
The schools over here have been closed. Same with kindergartens, kitas, bars, and restaurants. Public transport has been scaled back dramatically. Berlin is a ghost town, and we expect a state of emergency within days.
The sense among many of us, who have been glued to the news for the last week, is that our governments have utterly failed us. Germany waited until days after France, Italy, and Denmark essentially went into lockdown. All across Europe, borders are starting to be closed.
People are scared that their elderly relatives will get sick and there may be no one to save them. And they are sad, too, that our way of life and the things that we have taken for granted seem about to change irreparably, transformed into something we don’t yet know the shape, form, or taste of.
We look to the US and the UK from Germany, and we are scared that you do not know what is about to hit you. Your president is a deluded, dangerous, grubby, opportunistic idiot who is about to be found out for the fraud that he is.
In the meantime, we are getting through day by day. If there is a God and she is listening, I hope she blesses us all and ends this thing soon.
Life will return to a semblance of normality at some point. The natural cycle is that it will. But I don’t know what comes next. A friend of mine sees only darkness right now. This is the only thing I’ve been able to tell him: There is a tomorrow. And when there are tomorrows, there is hope.
In the meantime, as always, be kind and may your gods go with you.