It's Corona Time

Mar 28 , 2020
By Kidist Yidnekachew

A few days ago, I was at home listening to the radio and plotting ways of getting back at the power authorities for taking away the electricity at a time when most of us are forced to stay home as a result of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). They left us in darkness for two days.

On the radio, a man called one of the stations and talked about how his wedding plans were falling apart as a result of the virus. He was wondering if there was a way he could still have the wedding.

He went on to explain how the wedding was special for his bride-to-be and her family, adding that he was considering using all the precautions such as gloves, hand sanitizer and face masks.

The host of the radio show interrupted him and said wearing gloves by itself was not a foolproof way of ensuring he would not contract the virus.

“As we use our hands to eat, and we cannot eat with our gloves on, you should consider postponing the wedding date,” the host insisted.

Coronavirus is holding us back from many special moments of our lives and ruining the plans we have made. We cannot even go to funerals to pay our respects. But this is the necessary precautions we need to take if we do not insist on the complete unravelling of our socioeconomic circumstances.

Here, there are many volunteers, mostly youth, playing a crucial part in informing and creating awareness of the disease. They can be found on TikTok, a social media platform where a great deal of related content, under the title “It’s Corona Time,” is appearing.

It is a reference to a song about a Mexican beer called, unfortunately enough, Corona. The music is incredibly catchy and sticks to the mind. We learn without actually feeling like we are being taught. We have to give credit to the stay-at-home movement of “vloggers,” as they are coming up with creative and entertaining content that creates awareness among the public. Humour in times of distress can keep people sane, at least for a while.

In fact, it is not all doom and gloom. No matter how we pride ourselves on being individualistic and self-contained, we all need some kind of human contact, whether in person or on some sort of platform.

It may be wrecking our economic and social lives, but the virus is at least giving families time to spend together, which neither parents nor children had before the global pandemic struck.

We should also not discount how it is cultivating in us a culture of hygiene. It is unfortunate that it took a pandemic to make us wash our hands properly and regularly.

This is not to say that we can afford to be relaxed about the pandemic. There is reason to be pessimistic about the spread of the virus, given how people are failing to adhere to the preventive measures that need to be taken.

Why are people going out instead of isolating themselves and staying put?

Many people are acting like everything has been put under control. It is admirable that people are walking around with gloves and masks, washing their hands at every stop.

But here is the irony. People wear face masks but still shake hands. They stand two metres apart from one another but sit jammed together in taxis. Some people wear the face masks back-to-front on their heads or are using sleeping masks to cover their mouths and nasal areas.

We cannot also forget people that scrub only their palms when asked to wash their hands.

We are not taking the virus seriously. There will be consequences if people keep saying “Leave it to God,” every time they are asked to take precautionary measures. We should indeed keep an optimistic outlook, but we should not leave it to fate when we could have taken precautions and prevented the spread of the virus.

It is crucial that we all stay informed and safe.

PUBLISHED ON Mar 28,2020 [ VOL 20 , NO 1039]

Kidist Yidnekachew is interested in art, human nature and behaviour. She has studied psychology, journalism and communications and can be reached at (

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