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Is Sara willing?

Twinkling with Ninfa R. Leonardia

Will the Olympic Games go on to the finish? That is one of the supposedly million-dollar questions that nobody can answer right now. It has started, all right, thanks to the hardy spirit of some of its officials, but even so, fears of the COVID, and actual cases seen to be threatening its continuance. Me, I find myself praying that this vicious pandemic spares both the athletes and its officials, because the games can divert people worldwide from the major problem of the year.

***

I know it started yesterday, and as far as I have noted, 12 athletes had already been sent home after testing positive for the COVID. What is worse is that  the new variant called Delta, is believed to be more dangerous than the earlier one, so we do not know yet how many more will have to be shipped home, and how many will continue to perform and exhibit their skills for the world to see. Of course we rely on television to enable us to watch and enjoy the performances, but at the same time, we worry who, and how many among them will continue to play to the end.

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According to the news, more than 990 dignitaries were expected to be at the opening rites yesterday. I can’t just imagine seeing all those officials, top ones from their countries move into the scene, all masked and unrecognizable to the audience. And what about the athletes themselves? Will having their faces covered have no effect on their performances? I have no idea if the Philippines has a delegation this time, and  whether the members are all fully vaccinated and protected from the virus, especially its newest  and most infectious variant.

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But perhaps sports should not be the most important of our concerns these days. And even the problem of COVID is also being overtaken by the reports of floods, not only in our country, but in other parts of the world as well. It is so alarming to see on TV people in Manila wading in floodwaters to get to their vaccination sites. And, perhaps that is also happening in other cities and provinces. But, at least, let us be thankful that vaccines are available and we can hope for a stop to the vagaries of this COVID attack.

***

And now with the latest variant called Delta, our medical community is again on their utmost guard in trying to prevent its infections, considering that it has also been regarded as a “super spreader”. Let us, therefore, listen to all warnings and advices intended to keep this away. And probably the most sensible and effective one is to stay home, because, by doing so, you will not only be protecting yourself, but the rest of your household, too.

***

Another strong reason why we should listen to all the so-called protocols against infection, is that even in the United States, as wealthy and as advanced in medical science and  practice as it is, no less than 48 states have recorded rising COVID cases! And, ironically, 94 percent of those stricken have not been fully vaccinated. I guess “fully” means that you have undergone the two doses required. Perhaps some of those who have had one thought that was all they need to be safe. I guess this is a case of getting both or none at all.

***

But it is good to know that in Manila, people are very vaccine conscious and reports say they are lining up in floodwaters or even under the rain as they await their turns for vaccination. That’s the spirit! Getting wet in the rain may give you a cold, but missing your vaccination could allow COVID to catch you. So let us not belittle the so-called “protocols”, and observe them, because this is no ordinary ailment that is not only affecting our country, but possibly the entire world!

***

By the way, President Duterte is supposed to deliver his State of the Nation Address on Monday, and I hope it will be covered live by TV. This will be one of the first State of the Nation addresses I will miss in the last few years, but circumstances do not allow it, so I will content myself with TV viewing. I hear, though, that daughter Sara, now mayor of Davao, is not attending. Maybe she wants to erase the ongoing impression that she is taking over when her father steps down? Wise girl! I think, though, that she is qualified for the job, maybe even more than her dad? I think President Digong thinks that too.*

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