I’ve been working and living in Qatar for 12 years.
On 27th of February 2020, just after my 33rd Birthday; I heard for the first time in my life that “COVID 19” arrived in Qatar. The first case reported officially.
Within days the cases multiplied.
Like all other countries, Qatar also took initiative and precautions to prevent the spread of Virus. But cases were increasing more than we expected.
New rules came. Without masks and gloves, no one was allowed in public places. Health Authorities declared more cases within few days and explained the importance of handwash and sanitizing.
After some days, a part of Qatar has been shut down. All public services stopped. There were no beaches, no shopping malls, no gyms, no entertainments. Everything was sudden. All company duty timings changed. 80 percent of employees should work from home and a few were only allowed in office. So our office also followed the same. I was in the 80 percent who work from home which felt like a self quarantine.
After some days I heard some companies shutdown because they didn’t have business or income. They started sending off employees back to their countries. The dreams and happiness of thousands of expats here shattered like a glass. It is like, today they go to office and the next day no office, no job!
One of my friends called me. He told me that he took a COVID-19 test and the result came positive. Recently I haven’t visited him. He told me virus might get infected from currency. Because he is a teller in a Financial Sector. His company closed temporarily. He was worried, if he was infected from Currency, how many will get infected through it? Those virus affected papers might have passed through how many hands?
Luckily after some time, he was fine and back to normal. One night he called and spoke about his experience with the virus infection. He said that he found it difficult to breath. He also had dry throat and runny nose. He didn’t want to hear any noise. He tried to listen to music and keep himself calm, but it made him more suffocated.
The food didn’t have any taste. He realized it was his problem. He ate the food like a peace of rubber. He used to cry with his dry throat. Government officials took care of all the infected patients very much care. It was highly appreciated.
Life has changed a lot. Our society has changed. The entire world and economy have changed. Our routine has changed.
Will those beautiful days come again?
The day without a mask or glovse or sanitizer will come again?
A public place without social distance from each other will come again?
Can we see the beautiful smiles on every human beings?
Yes. Those days will come again. Let’s hope. Let’s pray. Let’s fight and survive.
This COVID 19 is a lesson to realize how we were living. After so many years we will talk about this VIRUS to our upcoming generation. “Once Up on a Time there was a Virus. COVID19”
About the Author: Likesh Krishna