Everyone knows about the coronavirus, or more specifically Covid-19. It’s been the talk of the school.
Everywhere I go I seem to hear both teacher and students alike discussing the prospects of school being closed or travel abroad trips being cancelled.
It is hard to imagine that only a few months ago the coronavirus largely evaded the public eye. It was just some strange virus that most people compared to Ebola or Zika. Both of these were newsworthy, but their time in the media spotlight was short lived, and after a while most people all but forgot about them. This is how many of us thought the coronavirus would turn out.
But the coronavirus is different. It has not stopped growing, both in terms of people infected as well as fear evoked.
The virus became real to me when I opened my phone, and was greeted by a news article discussing the first coronavirus case in Italy. My mind immediately went to the upcoming Spring Break Latin Italy trip which I was to be a part of.
With each new day, new news emerged of the coronavirus’ unexpected spread through Italy, and with this news came more speculation as to the Italy trip.
I was reassured by the fact that the virus was only in northern Italy, and that according to the experts, “Italy is still safe for tourism.” This reassurance did not quell the rampant speculation that ensued. It felt as though every conversation I had with my friends devolved into discussions about the trip being cancelled. With each new day, new news emerged of the coronavirus’ unexpected spread through Italy, and with this news came more speculation as to the Italy trip.
Our worst fears came true when the CDC elevated Italy’s danger level to three, which meant that everyone planning a trip should greatly reconsider. This marked the end of the Italy trip. The virus which mostly everyone believed to be nothing more than a media phenomenon, quickly evolved into a worldwide fiasco. The very virus which I regarded as having no direct effect on my life resulted in the calculation of the highly anticipated Italy study program.
I only began to care about the virus in terms of how it would affect me.
I recognize my own faults. I only began to care about the virus in terms of how it would affect me. My worldview is without a doubt shared by many others. There is no immediate cure, both to the somewhat self centered worldview and the coronavirus alike. The results of the virus made me question my own way of looking at the world. Is it wrong to only care about things that directly have an impact on me? I do not yet know. All I know is that I will not be traveling to Italy this Spring break, and that the virus has already claimed victims within the United States—making it scarily close to home.