Contributed by Wanders of Eve
Dear fellow traveller,
How have you been?
It has been over half a year since the coronavirus disease struck and has literally sent most parts of the world into a frenzy. Despite these unprecedented times, I hope you are coping well.
As I write this to you, I have been stuck for four months in my home due to the lockdown that is currently imposed in Metro Manila. While travel is put on hold, I am sure that the industry will gradually bounce back even as we brace ourselves for the new normal. For now, I can only look back on fond memories from when I was travelling in the past five years. I assume you do, too.
I had two trips planned for this year; and while one was already cancelled, the chances for the other one to push through looks rather bleak. How about your travel plans? Maybe you are disappointed about that cancelled trip. Maybe you were on a holiday and suddenly got locked down and cannot come home.
Or perhaps, you were gearing up for that first-ever international trip with your family and it must be put on hold. I guess by now, you are in the process of claiming a ticket refund from your airline. Perhaps you are really struggling to get by. How are you, really?
I never thought I would go through a pandemic in my lifetime. Do you share the same sentiment? Sometimes it can get tiring to see the news every day as the world races against time to contain the virus. Lives are lost. Economies are suffering. Massive layoffs are held. Many businesses have shut down. Political discord is on end.
Yet, let us also not forget the good things that happened while we battle COVID-19. There are lots of inspiring stories of people who lost their jobs, but in their bid to survive, became successful entrepreneurs. Many businesses reinvented themselves to keep up with the trying times. Pollution is lessened. We’ve become more mindful of cleanliness. Humanity is alive despite the dominance of negative news in the media. Families spend more time together. Some travellers have become instant chefs, plantitos, and plantitas. How is this pandemic shaping your perspective towards difficult times?
COVID-19 has somehow revealed what is truly valuable. I hope we would have already rediscovered the wealth that is found in our health and relationships, and the importance of saving for the rainy days. Let us be good stewards of these, including our time.
Now, may I encourage you by saying that like all other pandemics, this too shall pass. We do not know when, but I do know that we will see better days soon. Let us hold fast to this hope and wait patiently. We will be with our families again. We will travel the world again. We will meet new friends and share travel stories when we hit the road again. We will create new memories again.
I pray that the world heals soonest. And just like how travel taught us valuable lessons in life, may this pandemic also teach us to demonstrate the same resilience we displayed when we encountered challenges on the road.
For now, make the most of whatever time you get to spend with your loved ones and make yourself productive.
Stay safe and healthy.