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IT’S BACK! A supposed return might as well be on today’s headlines, but the question remains, was the coronavirus ever gone?

While it is true that the country’s Covid statistics differ so much once we compare them with the rest of the world’s, reviewing how far we have gone since February of last year indicates sporadic and sometimes fluctuating bursts in the number of positive cases in numerous city and town centers.

Fortunately for us then, our medical capabilities had not yet been totally overrun just like what is happening in India.

Until now. As of today, the rising number of cases has again become really alarming, so much that quarantine regulations have again been raised a notch, with local government units advised to adapt according to their particular situations. Already, hospitals in general Santos City have been reported to be presently at full capacity with Covid cases, same with Davao City’s SPMC.

At this, hairs on your nape might stand on end, with an accompanying chill sweeping through your skin, indicating only one thing: you have been here before. The past in review has become a return to the past. Not too long ago, in October of last year it was, who can forget?

Once authorities gave the signal to lower quarantine protocols, people had once again started to go back to socializing, some recklessly as though the virus had been completely beaten. All these despite warnings by city officials to be wary of being too complacent.

True enough, in many localities in the country and the world, each incidence of this kind had been followed by spikes in positive cases, which many misconstrue as “second wave”, when in fact, some may have been simple cases of letting our guards down.

With the advent of several vaccines, people and some health officials, as you may have noticed, have begun to love mouthing the words ‘herd immunity, as if it were a mantra that would eventually overwhelm the virus and kick it out of its lethal hold on humanity.

What is ironic about the whole thing is, with a general breakdown in discipline and disrespect for regulations, attaining herd immunity might face an uphill battle all the way because of this general “herd” mentality of me-first.

In the end, who is to blame in all this? The herd needs to go out of the barn in order to live, earn a living and survive. There’s no debating that.

We’re all entitled to our own take on things, as it is. In Gensan I was told, some people do not even believe in the virus because they think it is just a ploy by hospitals to take their hard-earned money. If you can, replicate this thought a hundred times, and then add the results with the existing number of those who still believe that by refusing to wear a mask, they have exercised their freedom to freely express themselves. At this, I’d hate to even calculate the total results. Surely though, the result might be as incomprehensible as our stupidity.

I remember during the first few months of the quarantine last year when people, still shocked at the happenings all around, chose to keep safe and stick closer to home or where they were at the time. It had only taken less than a year for the human herd to again hear the call of the range. So, as a final note, it’s BTS-1 again. Back to Square 1.

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