Stubborn Stain



I heard that the authorities have loosened their grip in Calauag; so the residents could go out to their front yards and enjoy some fresh air. After a brief period of freedom from Covid, a handful of probable cases (as Sec. Duque would love to refer to them now) pop up in Concepcion Grande. (Somehow, I understand that mayor who ranted about the switch on terms from PUM/PUI to probable/suspect. Although, it is a minor issue, it could create a little confusion; and I wonder what was going on in the mind of the person who masterminded this change. In the middle of the troubles of treating, testing and tracing, all of a sudden, he/she thinks about the monickers of patients. Don’t they have already have too much work load on their hands to concern themselves with trivial matters which would have no to little influence to the outcome of their endeavors? Oh well…) This concept of being Covid free is somehow tricky. It is sort of an illusion of freedom; because we just think that we have been rid of it, granting us freedom; when in fact, the virus is just lurking in some corner about to prance and attack. Then in a snap of Thanos’ fingers, we are once again, Covid frightened. So, just like the sort of news which plagues media (and was coined by US President Trump), it is fake freedom.

With much gratitude, the policewoman and her family in Concepcion Grande has since tested negative. So, there won’t be any barricades in whichever part of that big barangay they live in. Now, just when I thought that the next barangay to be put on lockdown would be Carolina (no offense to Carolina residents, since the Covid virus seems to have some affinity with places which it shares its initial letter: Concepcion Pequeña, Calauag and Concepcion Grande, the pattern is broken with Triangulo. The virus has drafted a 17 year old female fighter against the disease. We all hope and pray that she fights the good fight with faith. So, run back home and stay indoors (as we all should have been doing; in case some of us may have forgotten or have chosen to disregard, it because the cops have set up barricades within and around a few blocks in Naga City Subdivision. Hey, wait a minute. I used to live there when I was in my early to mid-teens. Afternoons around in those streets are so quiet that it was always nice to go around the neighborhood for a stroll. Then, I or we (with some friends) would let the big dogs chase us; much to our delight. I wonder if the local wannabe gangsters still plagued that area; or have they gone out of trend?

With this development, the head whirling roller coaster ride continues. Just when we thought we’re up, we plummet down. Then, we go the same route again. We all try to wash it off. Then, just like a stubborn stain, the virus pops up in a different part of our body. We’re like chasing a jumping itch. If it’s any consolation this sporadic trend is far less worse than the curve direction which most places follow. The nation and an overwhelmingly large part of the world is said to be following a curve which would peak at some point then slide down with decreasing cases until the number flattens to zero. Well, that downward part of the curve seems to be far from sight; and the score boards of Covid cases shamefully shoots up without restraint. According to reports, Wuhan (that unfortunate origin of this all) has flattened the curve and has gone back to “normal”. Although, there are reports of alleged a second wave of an epidemic and some patients who have recovered experiencing a resurfacing of the virus. We should also look at the systems of Denmark and Norway which would be opening up their lockdowns around this time and compare it with those of Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea which have preceded in the easing of quarantine and experienced spikes in cases. Maybe the Philippines can learn something from them. That’s just to remind our national government that China is not just the other country in the world. With the coverage on this Covid catastrophe, not much attention was given to North Koreas’ most recent nuclear testing not far from South Korea; as if international problems could not get any worse. How could Kim Jong-un still think of such things in his seriously deteriorating health? But don’t fret, Filipinos. We’re not far behind. Abu Sayyaf and drug dealers still managed to wreak havoc amid this pandemic and economic struggles.

So, when we bring our attention back to our neighborhood, we’re still in a far less worse situation. Now, let’s see how we could wash this stubborn stain off.

“Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.” Psalm 51:2