A beginning in viral times.

It is almost midnight. I write this to you as I step into another day. Everything is fine here for now. The virus is still far from here, but for how long I cannot say. In the afternoon, two folks, a man and a woman, visited my home with masks covering their sweaty faces.

‘Tell me your name,’ the woman said.

‘Why should I? Who are you?’ I asked.

‘We are asked to survey in light of the rapid spreading of the virus. Now, tell me your name,’ she replied.

‘Oh OK. OK. Fine,’ said I and told them my name and cellphone number.

‘Has anybody visited you from outside?’ asked the man.

‘Nobody visits me from anywhere. I live alone,’ said I.

‘Fine,’ said the man and took out a sketch pen from his pocket. He wrote a sequence on my door in big, bold characters. ‘What the hell,’ I said in my mind as I read the characters.

I understood the idea of this exercise. In case I get the virus in the future, they can track my home and burn it down to ash.

— TOMIC RITER

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