The Coronavirus pandemic has bought the entire world to its knees. Over 4 million people infected and over 2,80,000 deaths so far. More people will get infected and more people are expected to die with each passing day. Scientists across the world are working to find a vaccine to defeat the coronavirus and governments across the world are fighting to contain the spread of COVID-19.
GoaChronicle.com Founder & Editor-in-Chief Savio Rodrigues spoke EXCLUSIVELY to the Coronavirus. The virus wanted to speak and get a few moments to share its side of the story. It felt that in India where even a terrorist is portrayed as maths teacher by media, a deadly virus could also be looked at sympathetically. So it decided to talk to an Indian journalist.
Let me inform our readers that this interview was conducted keeping in mind the tenets of social distancing and online. So our readers need to be rest assured that you would not be infected by reading the interview with a coronavirus.
GoaChronicle: Do you know where have you come from and what are your origins?
Coronavirus: I really don’t know where I have come from; all I know is that when I opened my eyes in November 2019 I found myself in a test-tube in a lab. All around me, cute-looking Chinese scientists were smiling and giving each other high-fives. There was sense of an achievement around me coming to life in a test-tube.
GC: China is telling the world you are an act of nature that originated in the Wuhan wet market?
CV: China needs to cover-up my birth. I understand their predicament. After a few weeks of my birth. I was taking to the Wuhan wet market by the Chinese scientists for my playtime. I was released from my cell. I then went around to play in the Wuhan Wet Market. When I retuned back. I looked around for the Chinese scientists but found that they had abandoned me at the Wuhan wet market. I was afraid. I was confused. I was orphaned.
GC: You were born in China. What inspired you to travel around the world?
CV: I was left orphaned by the Chinese scientist at the Wuhan wet market. I learned to survive by infecting people. The more people I infected to more stronger I got. I just moved from one human to another effortlessly. On one my tours around Wuhan. I came across a travel agency. I saw these beautiful pictures of different countries – America, Italy, Spain, France and even India. I decided I wanted to be a traveller. I wanted to see the world. Experience different cultures and different hospitalities. The adventure spirit stirred in me. So I decided to travel.
GC: Have you left China for good?
CV: To be honest. I thought China was my home. I was hurt when I was left orphaned. I was even more disappointed when China denied my existence to the world. China even wanted to exterminate me. I did not come to life out my own wish. I was born because someone in China wanted me to come to life. Now they deny me in front of the world and blame me for infecting people in China. I hope to return to China. But I am like a prophet who is not welcomed in his hometown. I hope the World Health Organisation (WHO) will tell the world the truth of my origin in China and clear my maligned image.
GC: How has your travel experiences been in the different countries you have travelled to around the world?
CV: I am having a wonderful time around the world. I love America. I love New York, it is a city of vibrancy. Italy, France and Spain are majestic. Moving around Europe is like poetry in motion. I also love the other Asian countries of Japan, South Korea, Singapore and Thailand. I am amazed by the people of India. They are so closely knitted. Mumbai reminds me of New York. I have not yet explored Africa enough but I am sure after my sojourn in US, Europe and some parts of Asia, I will explore the African nations at leisure.
GC: Why are you leaving a death trail wherever you travel? What have the humans done to you that you are a bringer of death?
CV: I am a virus. I play with humans. That’s my nature. I do not intend to kill anyone. If humans have weak immune-system or preexisting diseases then when you have too much interaction with me, it will lead to death. Ask the World Health Organisation whether any of the deaths have been directly caused by COVID-19 or because of preexisting medical conditions that get aggravated because of my presence.
GC: Why have you spread so robustly in the US?
CV: Americans by nature are fun-loving people. America is the only nation that has accepted my place of origin and is working to ensure that China restores my honour and accepts that I come from China and from the Wuhan lab. I am a big fan of Donald Trump. I admire his courage to fight for my virus-right. He has even withdrawn funding from the WHO. The WHO knows the truth of my birth in China but they keep denying it to the world. I am aware that there has been a considerable number of deaths in the US but you cannot put the blame on me. Most Americans have bad eating habits, their food is mostly junk food full of cholesterol and their bodies are full of preexisting illness related to heart, digestive and respiratory organs. I do not mean to kill anyone. I just like to co-exist with humans.
GC: So what are your plans in India?
CV: I plan to have a lot of fun in India. It is a nation that cannot follow lockdown orders. Take for example this set of people, your government termed single-source, they were very kind to me. They allowed me to attend their congregation. From there I could travel to different parts of India. In fact, let me tell you that the airports in India were so much of a travel treat. I just strolled into India and it’s different cities. They had this detection and detention facility but nobody checking really bothered about the spread of the virus. Most where busy chatting or picking their noses.
Amusingly you Indians on a particular day started to bang utensils and scream ‘Go Corona Go’. It was so cute and childish. I loved the energy.
Even the lighting diyas bit was like experiencing a light festival. I love this positivity. I am sure your Prime Minister Modi will soon invite the people of India to join in another nation-building activity. This makes me love India. This coming together. This oneness. I plan to stay in India a little more, I want to enjoy the rains. I am told monsoons are wonderful in India. I want to hear the patter of the rain. I will spend most time with more Indians in the monsoons. I will try and visit most homes.
GC: How was your experience in Goa?
CV: To be honest. I could not take the heat in Goa. The heat was unbearable. The lockdown made it difficult for me to catch up with Goans in the pool, because no one was coming to any pool. Neither were there any bars, nightclubs or pubs opened, so no one came out to have a drink. I had heard a lot about Tito’s but that was also shut. So Goa was a drab. I infected seven people who had come from abroad. I got bored. So I decided to leave. I don’t know if I may return or not. I cannot say. I heard monsoons are good in Goa. But if there is going to be no party in Goa, then there is no fun.
GC: Of all the cities in India, which city are you enjoying the most in?
CV: I love Mumbai. I am having a lot of fun in Mumbai. The people are very welcoming. The government authorities too enjoy my presence that’s why instead of focusing on enforcing the lockdown they spend time on PR-related promotions. They even got your movie stars to promote this campaign ‘Best CM of India’. I am grateful to the Chief Minister of Maharashtra Uddhav Thackeray and his son Aditya Thackeray for their kindness in allowing me to connect with Mumbaikars. So far I have connected with over 20,000 people in Maharashtra and 13,000 in Mumbai alone. I plan to come in contact with many more. I want Mumbai to be remembered as New York. I also like parts of Gujarat, Delhi and Tamil Nadu. In Chennai I hope to dance ‘Appadi Podu’ with many Tamilians. In Gujarat I want to dance to the Garba and Dandiya beats. In Delhi to go crazy on Bhangra. You can be rest assured I will connect with many in these cities.
GC: What if someone is not interested in connecting with you, what should they do?
CV: I am not sure why would some not want to connect with me. But if you don’t. Then I suggest you wash your hands regularly. Have a bath frequently. Wear masks and gloves. Avoid crowded places. Maintain social distancing. Be firm on non-pharmaceutical measures. Stay at home and enjoy your family time; because your family are the most important people in your life.
People are calling me as the bringer of death. The fact is that I have forced people to spend more time with their family. They were busy trying to accumulate wealth, fame and material things that life has to offer while competing with other humans. In the rat race most tend to forget their most vital treasures – their family.
GC: Will you leave humans alone and retire quietly before humans find a way to kill you?
CV: I am a virus. I was created to connect with humans. I think humans and I will learn to live together. Humans can try to find ways to kill me. It is their nature to create and destroy. I was their creation and I am sure they will be my destroyer. But I do not like to think that far. Death comes to all, whether human or virus. Until then I will continue to travel and enjoy my relationships with humans.
GC: What kinds of humans do you prefer, do you chose based on caste, creed, colour or economic status in society?
CV: I like humans. I am what people in India love to talk about vehemently – I am secular. I do not care about your religion. I do not care about your colour. I do not care about your sex. I do not care about your caste and I certainly do not care about your standing in society. I connect because I want to connect with you without any preconceived biases. I am truly secular.
GC: Why did you chose GoaChronicle to get your story out?
CV: I thought of Arnab Goswami from the Republic TV but he is currently dealing with a bigger and more deadlier human virus, so I did not think it was appropriate to bother him. I was told to consider Rajdeep Sardesai but I was a little guarded because of his Madison Garden boxing escapade. I even thought I would speak to the Wire but then I realised even if I told them the truth about my origin in China, they would find a way to blame the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and India for my birth and spread, globally. I thought I would give GoaChronicle a chance because at least it has been openly questioning the WHO and China.
GC: So what are your immediate plans over the next couple days?
CV: I plan to spend a considerable time at the White House. I want to get to know President Donald Trump a little more. I also want to connect with the other people at the White House. I need them to fight for virus-rights. I want them to get China and WHO to admit about my origin.
P.S: This is a satire. This is written with pun intended. There is message in it. I pray all who read it find their own message.