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One Year After

WELCOME TO EDITION 805 of GRAPEVINE

I finally finished reading The Plague last night.

Written by Albert Camus, it was published in 1947

Now that I use the mobile phone more, I find myself reading fewer books.

This is not good and I hope the Year of the Ox will bring about a reversal of this unhealthy situation.

The Plague is set in the Algerian city of Oran.

Although Camus situate the epidemic (caused by rats) in the 1940s, he drew on materials of a cholera epidemic that wiped out a large proportion of the Oran population in 1849.

The earlier part of the book reveals how health and political authorities debate whether to declare an emergency so as to isolate their city.

There is some to and fro but when the evidence became irrefutable, Oran was locked down. No one can leave or enter the city.

I had been inspired to read The Plague because I want to become more familiar with the works of Albert Camus and because of our present Covid situation.

I drew comparisons between what happened in Oran and Wuhan.

What if the authorities there had listened to their doctors?

What if Wuhan had locked down against the rest of China?

What if Beijing – when it discovered the pandemic in Wuhan and later, that it had spread beyond Wuhan – prevented Chinese from travelling outside the country?

With China now disowning Covid even began in Wuhan, what if another health epidemic occurs in China, will it tell the world or cover it up again?

The past can be very instructive in telling us what will happen in the future.

Wishing you A Very Good Week.

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