02AA7: Some Cause for Concern

Mid-Week Brunch

Metro Manila Community Quarantine - Day 655

Today it was reported that there are 889 new COVID-19 cases in the country, which is the highest single-day count since late November. Recently our new cases per day have been in the 300 range, so this represents a rather significant jump. I'm sure we can hand-wave some of the increase because of some labs reporting data late and silly things like that, but there is a lot of media chatter about reports of more COVID-19 cases in hospitals again and other signs that perhaps the new omicron variant is finally spreading in earnest.

And we can't even pin things on the holiday season with all the different family gatherings as one would typically expect to see those numbers in another week or so. So the increase in cases is probably something else entirely. We'll have to watch the case numbers closely to determine if this is just some weird data spike or it actually represents the beginning of a new trend. I really hope that it's not the case - going back to stricter quarantines would be rather soul-crushing at this point. But we'll do what we have to do.

We've been going back to O Bar every week since they re-opened, and today's news does shed a potentially troubling light on our excursions. We know there are risks to be associated with this and we've generally accepted that and do our best to stay as safe as possible. We're scheduled to go this weekend after the New Year's Eve fireworks and I wonder if this will be our last excursion for a while. There's the cost consideration that comes with going out every weekend but it's also probably prudent to wait and see how the case numbers go over the next week and determine how to proceed from there.

But man, I was really looking forward to figuring out even limited in-person tabletop gaming again in the coming year. A return to stricter quarantine and possibly (heaven forbid) another face shield mandate would be a terrible, terrible way to start the new year. Hopefully, the increased numbers of vaccinated individuals together with more people allowed to get their booster shots sooner will prove to be sufficient defense against this next wave of COVID-19. 

Fingers and toes crossed. We can only hope for the best while doing what we can to stay as safe as possible and minimize our potential risks. I really hope 2022 is a better year than 2021 has been. I doubt we'll be fully back to normal anytime soon, but we still deserve a life better than the one we have been living for most of this year.