Palermo, March 23rd

Dear Nazriq,

you’re asking me how I am and how’s situation in Italy.

You see numbers and percentages on internet: we have almost 60000 positives, over 5000 deaths and more than 3000 pople in intensive care.

On 21st of February we had the first confirmed infected, patient one: male, 38 years old. No comorbidities. He needed intesive care assistance.
After that they started screening people who presented flu-like symptoms. Positive cases exploded and started doubling day after day.

First we were not totally aware about the severity of situation and virus spreading seemed such a far and distant problem. We carried on going out and meeting friends. Also some politicians were still going to the stadium or going out for aperitivo saying something like “we don’t stop“. Thinking more about economy and money than about health.

Letter to my malaysian friend
Palermo, February 28th
Letter to my malaysian friend
Nicola Zingaretti in Milan, February 27th

Then numbers started raising following an exponential trend and many of us started understanding: even though we didn’t see it, it didn’t mean covid-19 was not there, among us. This terrifying numbers are now the proof.

Letter to my malaysian friend

For now, here, the most affected area is the north of Italy, where hospitals are overwhelmed and there aren’t spots for all the people who need it.

Infection is spreading also through doctors and nurses: many of them died. And what are we going to do if all of them die? So, what i’d like to tell you and your compatriots is: “don’t make the same errors we made. STAY HOME. It’s not just about YOU as a single human being, it’s about all of us as part of human race.
In this moment a wrong behaviour is going to have consequences on our families, neighborhoods and so many other people.”

We both know viruses are interested just on spreading. The only weapon we have to stop it is staying home, avoiding virus to have chance to replicate, to grow.

This is not the time to hang out with friends, to go to parties and to do whatever we want. We’ll have an amazing party when this nightmare is over. But now we’re just at the beginning.

Letter to my malaysian friend
Palermo, March 15th
Letter to my malaysian friend
“Capo Market” in Palermo, March 22nd
Picture by Francesco Pace

Take care.

Maria Francesca

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