14 Mar 2020 – 9:18 GMT – 7°C Mostly Cloudy – Co. Dublin, Ireland
Planning in a pandemic
You can’t. Accept it.
No travel bookings made. No accommodations booked. Can’t say the walk off. It’s not off so must plan as if it will happen.
Bought and assembled my hiking kit. Completed that task this week. Added gloves and another fleece. None of this is cheap: it’s an upfront investment in maintaining health rather than saving for later expenses for poor health. Fingers crossed for longevity.
Chris W walked stage 1 Buxton last weekend and then yesterday, walked stage 2 to Thorpe. As practice. We talked about his experience and I was a tad jealous. I’ve not done much walking recently due an annoying cold, not Covid. But I’m better and getting twitchy to tramp. Verb.
Global things are very weird. The worlds’ leaders seem to be focussed on power consolidation rather than holding onto us. It would be best to act in concert but fiefdom thinking prevails. The diverse responses can’t all be right. Secrecy abounds and that’s usually a mask for illogical thinking or hiding shortcomings or competition. Really, is such nationalism rational? Do we not understand the word ‘pandemic’?
So I’m wondering if walking towards Rome is socially responsible. And trying to make the choice between abandoning the walk or going for it. Of course, if I’m thinking like this at all, I suppose I know the answer.
Abandonment has advantages: we’d potentially be shortening the life or lives of strangers if we became carriers so the advantage is to the community if we stay home.
Or is it? Perhaps we’d get sick at home. At 65, that might escalate us into healthcare. Increasing the risk that healthcare staff would get sick and we’d be consuming resources best left to strangers who might live if we don’t infect careers and occupy beds.
Then again, if we walk, we might stay healthy longer and not need palliative terminal healthcare for thirty years. Versus twenty years if we don’t walk because if we walk once, we’ll walk many times over the coming years and stay fitter longer.
It can be hard to incentivise individuals to take an impairment for the benefit of others. It’s harder when either the impairment or the benefit are fuzzy.
Conclusion: 25% chance of occurrence in 2020, 75% chance in 2021.
Moving furniture and books earlier today turned up a box labelled ‘stamps’. Proof of my early interest in geography was inside. It wasn’t my stamp collection and I guess geography is a heritable interest. Quite a few first day covers from the sixties and seventies caught me eye. Bought by me through an Irish Times service that allowed institutionalised people participate in society. I was in boarding school at the time. And I passed the first day covers on to the next generation when an interest piqued at similar age for our daughter. A time when I was commuting to workplaces scattered all over the globe. Not hours 8 to 4 but 8 weeks away and 4 at home. I even managed to work on five continents one year. She was vicariously experiencing geography instead of discussing geography homework.