How and where on earth…

I was almost expecting that none of the first Calauag Covid patient’s household would test positive. Almost all of the group had already gone out of the woods, then just like a final twist in a movie plot that would shock the wits of the audience, making them elicit involuntary curses under their breaths, the last member tests positive. So now, officially, Naga has had three on the tally board, and more recently, a 75 year old Legazpi resident has joined their ranks. So, I guess that strongly proves that the Calauag infection are authentic Covid cases. Maybe, that’s the call to rest any hand of suspicion.

In the middle of the struggles of acquisition of food and other necessities in a world without public transportation, restricted opening of shops, limited number of buyers at a time, suspension of work to pay for those purchases, and availing of government assistance, we may have strayed from the cause of how we got here and how we could possibly get out of here as soon as possible, hopefully. Yes, it’s a disease. Heck, it has even elevated itself from the level of a mere epidemic and has promoted itself to the level of pandemic, a word which we had not probably known existed before this whole chaos started (Is it any coincidence that pandemic sounds like pandemonium?) But it’s not like one of those fevers that one gets from mosquito bites, or something that grows on you because it suddenly got too hot, or you ate too much of something that you start aching. It does not naturally occur in Bicol, in the Philippines or in most of the world for that matter. It does not pop up randomly (or does it?) It is a disease that is caused by a virus from outside the nation. The Philippines only got it from outside the nation. Since we don’t have international airports and seaports in the region, and Manila is the usual point of entry to the nation, Bicol would logically get the virus from Manila. If we accept everything that we know about Covid so far, it could only come here through a person that has been to Manila, or has come in contact with someone from Manila. (Let’s throw the idea of the foreign source. Since the local Manila transmission, the solution has long been diluted.) Somehow, the first patient in Concepcion Pequeña has satisfied that logic with her travel background. (Although, the length of time also poses some questions.) But how about our modest Calauag patients? Okay, yes, they’re positive, let’s lock the whole place down, but the big question is how and where on earth did they get the virus? I have previously cited that in the assumption that they have abided by the Luzon community quarantine, they could not have moved around since the middle of March, cutting them access from Manila, or anyone from Manila. (Although, coming in contact with someone from Manila in Calauag would not be impossible.) There’s this buzz that the first Calauag patient allegedly did travel from Manila, and allegedly withheld that fact from authorities. If you think of it, that’s an easy way of explaining the problem away. We could say, “that does it; he’s been to Manila, mystery solved”. But seriously, if the patient did travel from Manila recently, that hikes up the probability of him getting the infection there; with all the local transmission that started in San Juan. However, on the other hand, neighbors and even some local officials have attested that the patient has not been away from their residence, much less has gone to Manila. In my opinion, in consideration of the patients’ background, this latter claim is more probable; although it defies the science of the virus as we know it so far. If that is the case, if patients had not gone to Manila it begs the big question, how and where on earth did they get it? Did he or they had a secret rendezvous with first Concepcion Pequeña patient? Is he an undercover scientist working with the virus in a dark room in his humble home? Is he an agent from China with a mission to spread the virus here? Sorry, maybe that’s what happens to your mind when you’ve watched too many movies because you can’t really get out.

Furthermore, why does Albay keep getting positive cases? If memory serves me right, before the President put whole Luzon on quarantine, the province has moved forward by putting itself on lockdown. Even municipalities initiated their own local lockdowns, with strong support of the community. So, why is the province not like Batanes or Quirino which are completely Covid free?

Why am I asking these questions? Because for all we know, the virus may be transmitted in modes we do not know of, and maybe we’ve been too busy guarding the doors when one window is a crack open. “Fools find no pleasure in understanding; but delight in airing their own opinion.” Proverbs 18:2