These days I live on internet looking for information. Coronavirus Worldometers is something I refresh multiple times these days, particularly at night. My heart sank today when I saw the numbers and they are not even final, we are nearing 300000 cases in a single day. We are firmly inside the second wave and it is a scary place. Twitter is full of request for medical help. We as a nation have messed up this time.
I do not discuss politics often because I am someone who gets beaten even by the office politics every single time. I consider national and state politics totally beyond me. I grew up in an era where everything used to be in short supply. Sugar used to become unavailable close to festivals! I hardly expect anything from the government, any government.
What We Did Between the First and Second Wave?
This is anecdotal, this is not data but prove me wrong by bringing in data. There is popular sweet shop in my vicinity. When the cases declined, the cars would spill over on the road over the weekends. It was very difficult for me to convince my daughter that she was still not allowed to go. Masks were rarely in sight.
One day an elderly lady in the neighborhood knocked at my door to get some help with her cell phone. She must be in her 70s. I was wearing a mask and she was not. We all know of such examples. We, the citizens, never thought of a second wave.
The Third Wave of Covid 19
If you are spending time on finding data that can give you some foresight, look at the countries who went through a third wave, if you have not already done so. You are smart you can find the data. See how many restrictions countries like Germany, Italy and France have gone through. The third wave is almost a certainty in India too and it is in our hands to break its back. Something we did not do with the second one.
While we are in the thick of the second wave, times are immensely tough. The feeling of helplessness is real. This too shall pass. However, I sincerely wish we would not forget the lessons of the second wave. My fear is that within a week of the infections going down, 15 days maximum, the cars will start spilling over the road again near that sweet shop. And that means more misery and the third wave.
I am over 45 and I already got my first dose of vaccination. And that is what I really feel hopeful about. Look at the Israel data now which went aggressively for the vaccination. Even UK numbers are encouraging which is another nation that is aggressive about its vaccination program. India is opening up vaccination for everyone above 18 from May 1. That gives me some hope.
When the vaccines just came to the market in India, they were available for 60 plus or people with comorbidities. I remember saying to someone that I would be probably the last one to find a vaccine in a land where connections mean everything. How wrong I was, I could simply walk in and get my first dose of vaccine. And a little later, all hell broke lose.
I am not sure how easily the vaccine will be available now as the population eligible is much larger. And I grew up in a time when everything used to be short supply, scooters, cars, sugar you get the drift? But I sincerely hope, I am wrong a second time and that vaccine will be easily available in India.
Remember the Possibility of a Third Wave
While I am anxiously waiting for the second wave subside in India I sincerely hope that we the common people will not forget the lessons learned in the second wave. And that we are aware of the data from other countries about their third wave. However, having lived here all my life, I will not be surprised when I see the cars spilling on the road again.