Welcome to Mexico!
By Victoria Schmidt
Never before in my life has there been so many so confused about so many dimensions regarding a single issue. There is nowhere to hide from Covid-19. It’s on every TV station, every news broadcast, every newspaper, every social media site, and website. And the information is different.
There have been many other viruses that we were able to rapidly repel. Not in order, I can remember the Swine Flu, Bird Flu, SARS, H1N1 and Ebola. I don’t recall getting vaccinated for any of them. And most of us dutifully get our flu shot and pneumonia vaccine each year.
This year is different. We haven’t had our doctors giving us advice and orders, but we’ve had government entities from local to state, to country, to World –Wide Home health organizations advising us. And the clearest message everywhere is STAY HOME.
Most countries have been quick to activate their protocols for a public health crisis. Others have not. Unfortunately, the actions or inactions at this time will pay a toll in human lives. That exact number, I don’t think will ever be known. And I will leave those who survive this crisis to debate the issues.
My compliments to the State of Jalisco and the Governor. They have acted quickly and decisively. The message is clear. STAY HOME. As of the week before Easter there were vehicles being pulled over and drivers and passengers were being asked about their destination. And then sent home. There is even a big sign by the ambulance...in Spanish...this is not a vacation, go home and stay home. They will ask for your ID as well. So drive prepared.
I don’t want to go out. I’ve been out for medical reasons this week. I couldn’t believe how much traffic was still on the road. There was no parking available near my bank, or the San Antonio center by Super Lake was FULL. Some people were wearing protective masks. Most were not. I leave the house looking like a masked bandit, with medical gloves. I even put alcohol on the gloves, and disinfect my hands again when I return home.
At first we were told masks wouldn’t really help. Then only if you had symptoms should you wear a mask to protect others. Finally it was decided everyone should wear a mask. You cannot find masks in stores right now, but there are several organizations that are making masks for sale, or giving them away as a donation. But as of this writing, the official position is WEAR the mask, and don’t take it off. Because if you take it off, even to take a drink, the INSIDE of the mask becomes contaminated.
I’ve seen more videos on hand washing, disinfecting the home, your groceries, and clothing. You think by this age, we all would know how to wash our hands!
It is said we will get through this together. Many people know the true meaning of sacrifice. Those who deliver food to our doors, People who drive the buses, and the cabs, the cleaners, and of course the doctors and the nurses. But please do not forget to do your part. Only go out when it is absolutely necessary. Then use protective masks, and alcohol. No, not the kind you drink! Keep yourself occupied by finishing a project you started so long ago. Read, write, and limit your access to news. Think and be positive while you are washing your hands 20 times a day and disinfecting everything. Balance, and know that many people are suffering; if we are lucky we will not get the virus. We will survive the economic aftermath. Perhaps it will put our world in a better place.
Please don’t expect everything to be “normal” again on the lifting of the quarantine. I believe the entire world will need to adjust to a new normal.
Column: Editor’s Page
Victoria Schmidt came to Mexico with her husband, in 2007. She is a graduate of Moorhead State University, Minnesota and graduated Cum Laude with a BA degree in Radio, Television and Film. At 23 she was hired at multi-national media corporation, where she worked 10 years as their Director for Operations and Finance. She then ran her own business consulting company. She has won multiple community service awards. Writing has been a passion of Victoria’s since Junior High. She has been active in the writing and publishing business for over 40 years and has been a columnist for the Ojo del Lago since 2008.