I’ve been trying to avoid talking about the pandemic but I have to bring it up once again.’Tell me Camp, how come that the persistent hospital statistics pointing out that 90% of covid ICU patients are not vaccinated, cannot convince these deniers to get the shot? Right now, we have 400 people in hospital, half of them in intensive care and most of them unvaccinated. It pisses me off that these idiots dictate restrictive protocols, delay necessary surgeries and use thousands of dollars worth of health care resources that we, the vaccinated, are paying for.’
‘Once again, my friend, you’re preaching to the choir. I’m not sure why governments just don’t make the vaccine mandatory. Some bullshit about freedom of choice when the choice really becomes: do I endanger my family, friends and co-workers or not and am I better off being laid off from my job and not being able to attend any events, weddings, funerals nor go to any restaurants, cinemas and gyms, nor travel or fly anywhere?’
It’s finally summer here on the Sunshine Coast. Rich man’s weather with no bugs, I like to describe it. But it’s quiet, no tourists, no festivals, no fireworks. In a way it’s kind of nice but it seems like the calm before the storm. Vicky set down two fresh pints and said: ‘Today you two need to focus on the beauty and goodness all around you. No doom and gloom and no Trump.’ We both looked at her speechless. ‘Just kidding,’ she said with a smile.
We raised our glasses and toasted to the beauty and the goodness and then Camp said, running his hand through his unruly shock of grey curls. ‘We have to admit that we’re not going to get out of this pandemic as we thought just a few months ago. Now it seems that the so called second wave is just a continuation of the first wave, trending upwards in lockstep with uncoordinated re-opening policies.’
I walked to Muriel’s house where Camp lives now and didn’t meet anybody, even though it’s not an isolated road. It felt kind of eerie, as if the town was depopulated. Camp answered the door and led me downstairs into his den which was strewn with books, maps, a wooden desk with a laptop and several more books on it. A busy place by all accounts.