PETERSBURG – In mid June 2020, for family reasons, I was forced to fly to Tomsk. At this point, restrictions on movement between regions were removed and I did not need to observe two week self isolation and observation in special institutions.

People gathering around The Hermitage General Staff, near The Palace Square (The Editor/Ksenia)

Upon arrival, they measured the temperature and calmly let me go home. In Tomsk, things are different than in larger cities. The number of cases here is almost equal to 3000 people and 23 death. This is an impressive number of cases for a small Siberian city. Cafes and restaurants are still closed here, only food delivery and pick-up are provided.

Many stores provide customer service only with a mask and gloves. Recently, the police wrote a fine to my friends for riding in a taxi without a mask. But this is the exception rather than the rule. Most often, the police in the city turn a blind eye to non-compliance with quarantine measures that continue in the region until the 1st of August 2020 by order of the governor. They are able to fine a person who is walking alone the street without a mask, but they are not able to influence the crowd of people using a bus without personal protective equipment.

People use their position and argue with herd convictions: if I’m not the only one, then nothing will happen to me. However, they forget that, first of all, wearing a mask and gloves in public places is the preservation of their own health, as well as the health of their family and friends.

To summarize everything written above, I want to say that the situation in St. Petersburg and Tomsk is only a small part of what is happening in the country at the moment. However, these cases are very revealing, they well reflect the human attitude to it. Despite the fact that the country’s population is very large, we would have been able to reduce the time of “rehabilitation” from a pandemic if people showed even a “drop of understanding”.

I am not a supporter of various theories that the whole virus is a lie, that people around the world are intimidated by those who benefit from it. I live my life here and now and see good examples of how people get sick and, unfortunately, die.

I hope that in the future we will be able to overcome this terrible infection. People will return to their usual lives, the economy will regain its financial turnover, and small and medium-sized businesses will be able to return their “ before quarantine” income.

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