A crisis with an odd sense of comfort

16 Mar

Just a quick post today to say that two aspects of this coronavirus crisis are particularly disorienting here in Vienna.

One is that we are going through this in considerable comfort. As the child of two Europeans, both of whom grew up in war zones during the Second World War, I have always assumed that a crisis would be accompanied by severe rationing (=hunger, for years), cold, long stretches without water or electricity, not to mention the fear of having a bomb dropped on your head or the head of someone you loved. It is almost disturbing to have everything, including, so far, excellent internet, phone service, and so on. It seems it should be more painful!

Come to think of it, that is not only the impression I got from my parents. When you grow up in New England, as I did, you know there can be snowstorms that take out the power and telephone for days on end and therefore make sure you have food, wood, and water on hand. You know that you will have lots of time to read (provided you have alternative sources of light), but you don’t expect it to be really comfortable.

The second factor contributing to this sense of disorientation is the exquisite early spring weather we’re experiencing. How can something bad be happening when the sun is shining the way it is and blossoms and flowers are coming out?

It doesn’t seem possible–and yet it is.

3 Responses to “A crisis with an odd sense of comfort”

  1. Pinch Lee March 16, 2020 at 6:10 pm #

    Well put! Thank you for the additional POV. It’s much needed.

    • ecbinvienna March 17, 2020 at 11:00 am #

      Good to hear from you, Pinch! Stay well and hang in there!

  2. esauboeck March 16, 2020 at 7:11 pm #

    So true! Thank goodness for technology! We’re under house arrest here in LA, but we have the internet and the possibility of ordering food online, medications online, practically anything we might need. Alas, unlike you in vienna, we Angelenos, who are SO spoiled by good weather most of the time, are now hving TWO WEEKS of rain and gray skies. We sorely need the rain,b ut right now the grayness contributes to our mood of doom and gloom.

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