Freedom Day (F-Day) was officially on Friday, the 15th of May. The term is relative of course, but the knowledge you can leave your house anytime, without a declaration subject to verification by police or military officials, does feel like a type of freedom. I just couldn't take it anymore, the daily number of cases, the deaths, the drama, let alone write about it. I thought it would be interesting to sort of document how it all went down, but after about a couple of weeks all I wanted to do was work, cook, eat, sleep, repeat without thinking of the virus. Incidentally that is exactly what I did, and that wasn't worth writing about either. Still, it was a definite reminder that watching the news is a terrible pastime.
Personally I don't believe there was anything resembling a pandemic, at least not in Cluj. But okay, we had to make sure and be 'safe'. I'm sure someday we'll get to a place, as a civilization, where being locked in a cage inside a larger cage - in the name of safety, of course - will be a welcome alternative to any existential threats measured in fractions of a percentage. In a life with no afterlife, you truly have to hold on to what you've got.
The irony of it all is we are all doing much the same things during these heady days of freedom. Freedom, it turns out, is a state of mind, not a permission slip.
So now that we've been free for a few months, I can report on the going-ons. Went on vacation a couple of times, road trips to the countryside, one to the beach - all the way to Bulgaria - much different this time than that short jaunt to Varna, years ago. Funny enough, when you're traveling you seem to step out of pandemic mode, you leave the mask behind and the sight of hotel staff and waiters with masks jars you out of the pretend-world of the covid-era vacation.
I can't help thinking/wondering whether last year's Basque country roadtrip wasn't a sort of swan song to classic travel as we know it. Either way, there is a perverse satisfaction in the knowledge that the citizens Barcelona or San Sebastian, normally under the perennial assault of tourists, can breathe easy now that their greatest wish has come true.