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​Trini Social-Distancing

A WOMAN in West Mall (before the lockdown) saw two women to whom she occasionally nodded in the church car park walking towards her. Ahead of the Trinidad governmental curve, justifiably nervous about the Corona virus, she crossed to walk in front of shop entrances on the other side. She nodded at the other women across the bench separating the hallways as they passed one another; but the women turned away, noses in the air. One of them turned to her companion, and, pointing with her mouth across the bench to the woman who’d shunned them, said, “She social, eh?”

Trini social-distancing.
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Unsocial Distancing

IF I WERE to start self-isolating against the spread of Covid-19, as requested by every firetrucking government in the world… How would anyone tell? I’ve been more or less completely self-isolating, without any official prompting, since July, 1988, the last time I actually went to an office every day. (Not counting seven or eight months in 1993 immediately after my father died, when I ran the shop in Guyana, like any good West Indian Potogee, and a few months temping as a typist in London in 1990, to try to make ends meet, though they determinedly remained strangers.)

Media organisations the world over have decided there is no other story than Corona, Corona but it is an interminable news cycle I would spin out of happily. Even admitting that the Corona virus really does seem to have caught on with everybody, everywhere, faster than the Macarena or Gangnam Style, it’s really not my cup of tea or petri dish.
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​Fall Een, Covid-19

NO Trinidadian was surprised that one of Canada’s first Covid-19 patients passed through Trinidad & Tobago; the wonder is that we haven’t yet been detected as the epicentre of the spread of the pandemic to the entire Western hemisphere. Every country on our side of the world could probably prevent contagion by simply quarantining every passenger on every flight from Trinidad, no questions asked.

We start with a direct and substantial link to the place where it all began: although they’re down in number from the peak in the Patrick Manning days, we have many Chinese-from-China who work in Trinidad but commute home regularly.
And it is typically Trinidadian that no one will be able to say how many have landed in Trinidad since January.
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