Being locked up a whole year

General

How is the situation in your city/ country? Is there a 2nd wave yet?
Here in Peru, we are at the end of the 2nd wave due to Covid. Health protocols are maintained. In addition, comments are heard about a 3rd wave. Peru has been one of the worst hit countries in Latin America. 199 K deaths from Covid. 2.16 M positive cases.

How did the atmosphere in your country change within the last months?
Especially emotionally. People were very afraid of the Covid, there was despair and sadness. The businesses were closed, but today, little by little, the economic activities are beginning. Vaccination is slow, but continues to advance at a safe pace. There are 8.5 M people already immunized with the full dose. There is still a long way to go, we are 30 M. 26.1% is the percentage of vaccinated people.

How are you and your family?
My family and I are fine. I just got vaccinated with the first dose. All older adults have already been vaccinated. They are now in their 30s, but just beginning. My family lives in various places in Lima, they are all very well and taking great care of themselves.

What was the biggest challenge for you within the last months?
The biggest challenge was transmitting tranquility. I take care of the duties and financial support in the family. So it was always difficult to be able to be calm and not get upset. In fact there was always some frustration in my mind but only momentary. Happily I have a stable job, although I am still looking for other economic income.

Peru has been one of the worst hit countries in Latin America.

Measures

When did you realize how serious the situation is?
When companies laid off some employees, when the number of Covid cases increased and especially the number of deaths in my country. I watched with great amazement status of whatsapp and facebook about people who could not overcome the Covid.

How did your government react to the crisis? Which measures/restrictions were taken first?
I am not an expert on health policy issues, but according to the international media they were one of the worst efforts to control the Covid. It happens that they removed the president in the middle of the pandemic and placed others for only a few days. If a political crisis, in the end they placed another to meet new elections. In other words, in 2020 we had 3 presidents. And this year 2021 we have a new democratically elected.

Are you satisfied with the measures of your government? What was good/bad?
No because there were many complaints of corruption in the purchase of care accessories. They did not buy the vaccines on time, they were looking for their interests. In addition, on the issue of the vouchers and food distributed, the people were not satisfied.

What would you like to say to your government?
That to make big changes, it is important to work together. It is not necessary to appear but to take immediate action. In addition to maintaining constant communication with the people. We do not want desk officers, we need honest people, who know their work, and want to be public servants.

Which sentence of a virologist/politician did you memorize the most?
There was a very peculiar phrase from a former president: “because I love you, I stay away from you.” It was interesting because in the middle of the Covid they talked a lot about maintaining social distance, but there were many who did not comply and did not respect the rules.

Because I love you, I stay away from you.

The Virus

Do you know anybody who was infected with COVID-19 or even died?
I know a family friend who died in a hospital due to Covid, because of his age and health history he could not resist. We all got very sad.

Have you already done a Coronavirus test or have you been in quarantine?
Due to labor and precaution issues, I have taken 2 tests. Which have come out negative. I have not been in quarantine. None of us who lived in my home were infected.

Are you afraid of getting infected with the Coronavirus?
Of course, in fact now that I am vaccinated I feel protected. Although I know that many variants can come but at least I am fine and so is my family.

A family friend died in the hospital due to Covid.

The lockdown

How long is/was your lockdown and what was allowed/what wasn´t?
Literally I was locked up like a whole year. Just in the next month I will return to the office after I´m vaccinated.

Did you spend the lockdown time with somebody and what did you do during this time?
I was with my mother and sisters. All taking care of each other and going out just to buy food, pharmacy and for other specific issues.

What did you miss the most during the lockdown? What helped you?
I missed being with family, going for a walk, traveling with friends. It helped me a lot to talk via cell phone or a virtual meeting.

Literally I was locked up like a whole year.

Changes

How did your work situation change within the last months (shorter hours, working from home, etc.)
Well now I am in telecommuting mode. Where can I accommodate my duties with my spaces at home. The company where I work assigned me a laptop and I have been able to continue with the projects.

How did your social life (relationship/friendships/dating) change due to the Corona crisis?
Everything has been 100 percent virtual, from work meetings, or friends meetings, also family calls, everything has been directed to the virtual.

What impact has the Corona crisis on your financial situation?
Well, in fact, I have relatives who have lost their jobs, so they have less income for the family burden. But saving on public transport and dedicating myself to other activities have been able to bring extra income.

Social distancing: How does your daily life look like at the moment?
Today I am at my house from Monday to Friday, Saturday and Sunday I go out punctually for some purchases. I carry out financial operations on my cell phone.

Everything has been 100 percent virtual.

Perception

Who are to your opinion the heroes of this crisis?
For me they are the following: the media, health personnel, the police, the military, the mothers of families. Because they did their best to keep their job and do many things for others.

What did the crisis show you?
How important it is to be together and as a family. Cherish every moment, every opportunity to do good things. But it also showed how horrible the police and personal interests are. Where they take advantage of things to earn money.

What will you appreciate more after the crisis?
Health, family, work. They are very valuable things … in addition to knowing how to value whoever kicks us and shakes hands.

Which images will you never forget?
The queues to get basic medicines, the queues in hospitals, the deaths in the publications of my friends, and anonymous heroes who gave their lives to help others.

Which stories/incidents/experiences touched/shattered you the most?
When the relatives of my friends passed away, their fathers and mothers. And they had great helplessness for not having anything at hand.

The crisis showed me to cherish every moment, every opportunity to do good things.

Perspective

What are you afraid of right now?
The economic instability, and the rebound in Covid cases. Because of the new variant. My country is not prepared for it. It would be chaos.

What gives you hope?
That people can learn that things together add up. That exists with the advancement of science solutions to great problems. That technology advances and we can make use of it.

Are you planning to travel within the next months?
Maybe next year, to a place where my family was born. It is called Ayacucho, it is the sierra of Peru.

Would you get yourself vaccinated against COVID-19?
I already vaccinated with the first dose.

What can we all learn from this crisis?
Wow it would be very difficult to describe. So many things have happened to everything: joy, sadness, suffering, despair, crying, resentment until now pass to illusion and hope.

If you could give 2020 a headline, what would it be?
It would be: “The stress test”.

The advancement of science brings solutions to great problems.