The Hope that this Works



This is so amazing and amusing. Just when we thought the government’s promise for any vaccine to come on February would be broken flat on its face, Sinovac doses come just in the nick of time in the very last day of the month. With this buzzer beater, no one could accuse the authorities of having given false promises to the Filipinos when the long awaited vaccines did come in the month of February and not a day later. But it was too obvious that they almost did not come on the set date. National Action Plan vs COVID-19 chief implementer Carlito Galvez who is referred to as the Vaccine Czar, had claimed that Pfizer vaccine may beat Sinovac in arriving to the country(Since when did we start tagging chiefs of offices after the title of Russian emperors? Is that not out of place in a Southeast Asian country which is a former Spanish and American colony?)But as it turned out, Sinovac the source of which is geographically and politically in proximity to the nation is here and is running through the bloodstream of the initial group of health workers who had received the shots. If you come to think of it, it is only logical for the Chinese made vaccine to more immediately and easily get here. After that tug of war of politics between Malacañang and the Food and Drug Administration on the endorsement of use of vaccine, the presumed cure finally becomes a tangible reality about a year and month after the first confirmed Covid-19 case in the country, and a month shy of a year since the Luzon lockdown which paralyzed everyday life as we knew it. Ironically, as inoculation begins, Covid-19 infection booms. This climb of cases would certainly give herd immunity a run for its money.


My entrepreneur friends are celebrating liberation in the approval of uniformity of health protocols. The business sector welcomed the development as engagement into transactions in purchase and transport of supplies and the practice of trade would be promisingly smooth across the nation. This sudden blessing comes a few days after a childhood friend confides to me that a night before, he and some of our other friends drowned their drones in drinks because of their complaints of the complications of commerce. After the announcement, they’ve been frolicking in freedom. If we look back at the sense of it, why after all do different local government units have different requirements for passage? Definitely, it had been a headache when every town has their own version of admissible and acceptable. It is a relief that these brigades of business could finally freely engage in their exchanges to remedy our malady.


That burning desire to revive the economy seems to be lurking its hopeful head around the corner. In support of this aspiration, the government has cancelled the status of traditional holidays and declared them to be regular working days. Are you as shocked as I am that All Saint’s Day November 1, Christmas Eve December 24 and New Year’s Eve December 31 would be regular working days this year? Supposedly, this move would help boost the commencement of commerce and defeat its decline. But would you go to work on these days? People don’t go on holiday on these days because the date is marked red on the calendar, but because it’s tradition. Family calls for them to stop work for a while and perform kinfolk roles. Would not employees get absent or take a leave just the same? Furthermore, would not this be counterproductive against that sought after stimulation of the economy? Would not a worker who has gotten his satisfying time of rest work more efficiently than that worker who has been overworked to oblivion? If a child gets sick and as a result gets absent from his classes, (We’re talking about the traditional face to face classes here.), would it be wise for him to make up for his time off, by waiving two months of weekends and go to school everyday? Would he not wear himself out and get sick again, maybe with a different disease than that which he previously had?


But on the other hand, do not businesses shoot up their peaks at these times of the year? Do not memorial parks become fair grounds because of the business booths that circle its periphery or even crisscross their interior? And don’t get me started with Christmas and New Year. So, maybe I’m the one being lazy here, and maybe the whole nation is dying to earn their keep as soon as and as quick as possible. So, let’s see. Maybe this holding off of holidays may work after all.


“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter…” Ecclesiastes 3:1