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This damn virus has changed Australia


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#1 zande

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:15 PM

So I’ve been cooped up all week, ventured out today to the supermarket for my usual weekly shop. People are stressed and anxious - I get that, we all are - but people seem to have lost the basic courtesies and niceness in my suburb. There’s no longer a smile or anything, shopping done in silence, I even saw a woman push another woman out of the way in the deli fridges, people glaring at people like they’re lepers almost. Drive home into my street where only a couple of weeks ago we would all gather each Friday night for drinks - now you’re lucky to get a wave from the top of the driveway.

Then chatting to my sister who lives in a regional town where there are no known cases, she said people have taken to taking photos of people they don’t think are obeying the rules and posting them on a Facebook site - the individuals in the latest one were 2 couples - one waiting for takeaway coffees and the other couple had just picked theirs up, simply stopped - the right distance apart - to say hello - and they got Facebooked for it!! (the cafe actually came to their defence and explained the incudent).

My sister is a nurse and has several friends who are nurses and they are reporting people are treating them like lepers too in case they’re carriers - again despite no-one being in the small local hospital with covid-19.

This is all so sad, and I’m really worried we’ll all be so scarred from this that life won’t get back to what it was before 😢

#2 Datrys

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:22 PM

I had to go out for work today too, and really noticed the hostility.  Just in the way people look at other people who aren't doing anything wrong.

I do wonder how this will shape who we are by the end of it all.

#3 Fizgig

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:25 PM

That’s interesting. I met a friend for a spatially distanced walk this morning and we found more people than usual were smiling and saying hello.

#4 Feral-as-Meggs

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:28 PM

My theory on this is that there’s a mind body connection thing happening in reverse.  So we know that smiling or relaxed breathing can affect our emotional state.

I think that’s happening in reverse - trying to maintain a distance, not breath on (or be breathed upon) and predict where other people are going and avoid them, is creating an emotional state which is consistent with that behaviour.  


#5 ~Jolly_F~

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:33 PM

View PostFizgig, on 04 April 2020 - 06:25 PM, said:

That’s interesting. I met a friend for a spatially distanced walk this morning and we found more people than usual were smiling and saying hello.

I have found the same when out and about.

I went to the supermarket today and there were lots of smiles and sorrys if you got to close to someone.

Had a chat and a laugh with one old bloke in the toilet paper aisle because there finally was toilet paper.

I wonder if sometimes the vibe people are putting out themselves might be affecting what they are seeing - not saying this is you OP but its been something I have been thinking about a bit.

#6 Isolated Old Elf

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:36 PM

I will only smile or engage the shop teller at checkout. Eye contact or a smile encourages conversation and reducies inhibition.
Everyone is stressed, so much uncertainty, job losses, worry about families, being separated from families, loss of routine. Everyone is essentially grieving.

#7 wilding

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:37 PM

I have to say there hasn't been any hostility in my area, everyone has pitched in, everyone still says hi or nods and smiles. At the supermarket everyone's polite to the staff, and ask if you want something if there's only a few things on the shelf.

Only on EB have I heard about people suggesting to call the police on kids playing in their back yard etc.

Edited by wilding, 04 April 2020 - 08:32 PM.


#8 Riotproof

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:38 PM

It is like a funeral. I found people did smile as they tried to make themselves shrink away from you.

#9 needs to get out

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:39 PM

It’s funny most of my interactions the past few weeks have been really friendly but today’s supermarket visit was really intense? I don’t know why but I was not entering aisles because people were already in there and close and felt I was constantly in peoples way. One woman and I seemed on a course to run into each other the whole way round and normally that would have provoked some kind of acknowledgement but today there was just an angst vibe.

There’s angst on EB. Angst in my online games. Angst at home. People are on edge and it’s hard.

#10 born.a.girl

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:39 PM

View PostFizgig, on 04 April 2020 - 06:25 PM, said:

That’s interesting. I met a friend for a spatially distanced walk this morning and we found more people than usual were smiling and saying hello.


That's been my experience, too, overwhelmingly.

#11 Caitlin Happymeal

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:40 PM

I definitely think it's bringing out more of the worst than the best in humanity..

I've been directed to not wear scrubs in public for the reason you mentioned. Very frustrating when people have no idea whether we are coming to or going from work. They also don't know how much clinical contact we have - some members of our multidisciplinary team wear scrubs but aren't clinicians. People making assumptions makes it harder for me to just go in an do my job and go about my activities of daily living that I need to do to feed my fam. And the people spitting on and assaulting nurses are probably they type who would demand a treatment and unnecessary testing and expect us to treat them with dignity, but can't fathom that we would appreciate the same courtesy. And I don't want the adulation that seems to be going around, but just don't treat me like I'm dirty. I take great pride in my hand hygeine/use of appropriate PPE and feel confident that my risk profile remains reasonably low.

That said, I'm certainly not going to the shops in my scrubs anymore. DH is now the designated hunter/gatherer.

Having said all that, my street is the best street. We are all lovely and supportive and sharing and helping each other. So I don't think humanity is dead in Australia, it's just unfortunately taking a holiday whilst the me me me's use covid 19 to justify their selfishness.

#12 It's Percy

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:46 PM

I'm finding everywhere but the supermarket everyone is friendly and smiles. The supermarket is like a Hunger Games type of place. I usually don't mind going there but at the moment it's horrendous to enter. So many signs of the virus around - empty shelves, reminders to stay away from people (which is impossible in the small aisles), having to pack one's own bags where there is no space to do so, it's all such a stressful experience.

#13 IamtheMumma

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:50 PM

I’ve found that I’m getting the stink eye whenever I arrive or leave work. We don’t have any cases in town yet (It’s arrived in the region) but people are fearful and a hospital uniform screams at them. The car park is for staff and visitors so we cross paths. A month ago, everyone smiled. Now, evil or fearful looks and then recoils away.

Did a Woolworths shop and people were acting horribly to others. One old man hissed at a child for catching up to her mum. Yes she was within 2 metres of him but she wasn’t doing anything except passing. His interaction with her actually increased the time she was near him. I get he’s high risk but if you’re that terrified and feel verbally abusing children is appropriate, you need to stay home and make other arrangements.

Edited by IamtheMumma, 04 April 2020 - 06:53 PM.


#14 TheGreenSheep

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:55 PM

I agree OP. People in the shops are different , even in our small town. Suspicious, give you the greasy eye if your maybe not over 1.5m away standing at the deli. Every where people have their heads down, minimal eye contact, but their stuff and leave. Quickly. No rules broken. Stand on the cross, social distance done and leave. The supermarket is so quiet. Not the same amount of chatter and friendliness. Out for exercise people are much more willing to nod and smile, say good morning.

#15 Julie3Girls

Posted 04 April 2020 - 06:59 PM

I’m finding the supermarket stressful - I actually find my sinuses play up after been there, maybe cleaning stuff?
It puts me on edge, with all the signs, and the markings on the floor, especially when it is crowded like today.  People standing in the aisles having a chat, while still distancing, which meant they took up even more space in the aisle .. I just wanted to get out of there.
But I do find people are being polite in standing back, not crowding each other.

Other places, less crowded, I’m much more likely to be friendlier.
But honestly, I think a lot of people are feeling the strain, suffering from a bit of depression about it all.  I know I am.

#16 Rummonkey

Posted 04 April 2020 - 07:31 PM

I’m finding the opposite when I exercise- suddenly my area has become friendly, eye contact and lots of smiles/nods as we socially distance ourselves. Never used to be like that. I used to be a bit fearful exercising by myself. However, when I take my kids out biking, I’m noticing more glances (fearful/nervous looks) at them (particularly older people) and very very wide berths as though they’re carrying the disease. No smiles at them either or us as we navigate around.

#17 Lucrezia Bauble

Posted 04 April 2020 - 07:56 PM

Zande - i agree.

the “curtain twitching” and dobbing in of neighbours and of people doing innocuous things like walking with their kids at the park ...it’s an ugly ugly trait. these things are legal. no one likes a rat - a dirty filth rat...and these times are making people rat on their neighbours for - i don’t know what reason - settling old scores? oneupmanship? proving how compliant we are? it’s really killed community spirit. there are glimmers of hope, it’s not all like that - but it’s prevalent.


#18 annodam

Posted 04 April 2020 - 08:08 PM

You can forget about life going back to normal for starters, this is our new normal.
People won't recover from this.
Some will of course as such is the human spirit but a lot will be broken!
We took things for granted & now we've had a massive reality check, can't say I'm surprised really, something had to give...

#19 No Drama Please

Posted 04 April 2020 - 08:13 PM

View PostIt, on 04 April 2020 - 06:46 PM, said:

I'm finding everywhere but the supermarket everyone is friendly and smiles. The supermarket is like a Hunger Games type of place. I usually don't mind going there but at the moment it's horrendous to enter. So many signs of the virus around - empty shelves, reminders to stay away from people (which is impossible in the small aisles), having to pack one's own bags where there is no space to do so, it's all such a stressful experience.
Yes! I find walking around the streets everyone is like waving and hello how are you, like some happy movie where we all hang out in milk bars but literally one block in the other direction the supermarket is completely insane. It’s now just an empty mall with boarded up shops where everyone is wearing masks and glaring into each other’s shopping trolley. I saw a guy in a full on gas mask today, like a ww2 one. The only shops are pop up ones selling boxes of gloves and masks. Signs everywhere telling you to keep away, don’t touch anything. I feel like I’m in some horrible dystopian movie, it’s actually pretty terrifying. So exact same suburb but completely different vibe.

No kids at the supermarket anymore it seems either, unless they are really young, even then you’d be lucky to see two or three. Walking in the streets there are heaps but none in the supermarket.

#20 Vienna

Posted 04 April 2020 - 08:14 PM

:Lucrezia Bauble - I agree. I was originally disgusted with hoarding and profiteering, but this dobbing in culture seems to be quite widespread. I mean house parties are one thing, but some of the things people are getting self-righteous about are ridiculous. Is it some kind of virtue-signalling, incited by social media? It's ugly. I have been shocked at how quickly people are ready to call for authorities to regulate behaviour. But the flip side of that of course is I've also been shocked at how unable to act with decency some people have shown themselves to be, such as travellers from overseas refusing to self-isolate, people hoarding medications and essential goods when other vulnerable people can't access them.

I guess I just would prefer a world where people can regulate themselves a bit more, and are less ready to cede civil liberties and report on their neighbours.

#21 luke's mummu

Posted 04 April 2020 - 08:15 PM

I got yelled at by a customer at woollies last week for touching a Soggy lettuce and then not buying it- seriously? I’m sure everyone washes and peels the outer layer of a lettuce. Horrible lady.

#22 zande

Posted 04 April 2020 - 08:20 PM

Oh yes, that’s become a thing - my DD1 is a type 1 diabetic and I couldn’t get the muesli bars she nomally has & for which we know the carbs. I had to pick up 2 boxes to compare the carbohydrates in each and felt guilty for putting back one of the boxes!

#23 Lucrezia Bauble

Posted 04 April 2020 - 08:21 PM

yep on twitter today someone posted a picture of a thoroughfare in Manly - which showed a number of people out and about - with the caption “how is this social distancing ?” (tut tut) - but i mean, it was. hot tip - people live in Manly - they’re allowed to be out to exercise, to get supplies. it wasn’t the bondi beach photo...no one looked like they were having a party - or even having a particularly good time. they were just out, walking, probably buying something for lunch for their family. back off people. we need to live - this is why we’re so concerned about the virus, remember? life? it’s for living.

#24 Soontobegran

Posted 04 April 2020 - 08:25 PM

I have found the complete opposite.
People are smiling and give a knowing look or a nod at the supermarket and out in our estate people are saying hi and how are you going as we pass each other.
Make the first move, you be the first to say hi, you might be surprised with the response.

As for never recovering from this as per PP........we will not be the same, we will hopefully have taken some lessons from this but 'never recovering' is a big call.

Edited by Soontobegran, 04 April 2020 - 08:27 PM.


#25 PrincessPeach

Posted 04 April 2020 - 08:31 PM

I'm interested in how many anti-vaccinators are sitting there watching this unfold & seriously rethinking their choice.




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