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Coronavirus, Remember ! 4.

Reread, the better to remember.

What did we experience, and how?

March 12 / April 17, 2020.

“Journal du Coronavirus 1-22” by Thérèse Fournier.

illustrations by Juanjo Surace.

Coronavirus Diary 4.

  1. In the eye of the storm.

Wednesday March 18, 2020.

From Italy to Germany via the Iberian Peninsula, Andorra and Romania, from North to South from East to West, the states, individually, and Europe as an entity, have taken the bull by the horns. Because there is no alternative. The images of Paris this Sunday March 15 are freezing, freezing these groups of idle citizens lying on the lawns of public gardens, these crowded quays of the Seine, freezing, yes, this promiscuity! If we had been able to calculate the transmission speed, this Sunday, March 15, we would have had cold backs! Because now it escapes no one, promiscuity = transmission. The first infected in parliament know something about it. The National Assembly is an ideal venue for dissemination and we bet that a postilion transmitted to the 7th row, will easily reach the first row - today, March 18, 15 parliamentarians are reached. Let's not talk about the English parliament where we are crowded together like a bunch of gays in a pub.

For a month - from February 13 to March 13 - we tried to ignore, we justified ourselves, we argued - the cases listed were not cases, we simply refused to admit that our solitary traveler, our virus, adored the drops of saliva of our friends, the metallic surfaces of the metro, the lifelines of our hands and that its speed of diffusion was unheard of.

Let's go back to last week in Paris. Monday March 9, the day after International Women's Day. Nothing very abnormal in Paris - whereas in the "great east" it is disaster, but suddenly the great east is becoming as distant from us as China in Wuhan. Everyone has their plans for the week and for the weekend. I have to come to Paris where I have a conference at the Sorbonne for my archaeological association "The Green Country". Still, I decided to take the train so as not to find myself stuck in an airport. Thursday evening March 12, a concert at the Hiro theater in Barcelona. Friday M. has to go by train to the "big east" for a business meeting. Monday March 9 and Tuesday March 10, normal. On Wednesday morning March 11, however, the house of cards begins to crumble. The concert is canceled. The Sorbonne conference, the trip to the great east, canceled. So my trip to Paris. Do I still have to go to Paris to see L? I can smell the storm that has been approaching for over a month and I try to find on the internet directions for universities in Paris. Nothing, so little. There is no slogan, because the epidemic is intensifying in voice-over, the less noise it will make, the better - municipal forces oblige? Everyone continues at their post in our ever-fast world. On Thursday the 12th, the Tolbiac university closes, and on Friday March 13th everything is accelerating. Spain "closes", it is a state of emergency. People are scared. Do messy errands and we discover, from Madrid to Brussels via Barcelona and Paris, that people have a passion for toilet paper packs. It is becoming a topic of conversation: why rush to toilet paper? Personally, I think toilet paper is used for everything, that it takes up a lot of volume - satisfying to fill cupboards - and that it is inexpensive.

Now, therefore, the maximum measures have been taken, because, sad to say? - it speaks to us in any case of the human - it is only by scaring the citizens that we will be able to contain the situation in Europe, the epicenter of the contagion. So the big game: Europe's external borders closed, internal borders with filtering. We must stop moving at all costs, because to move is to transmit.

Illustrations are by Juanjo SURACE

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