Omicron, Antigen, PCR – The New Normal

Omicron is at present determining the flow of daily life. Will 2022 also be a Corona year?

| Topics: Coronavirus
Daily life in Jerusalem. Photo: Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90

Another week is coming to an end, Shabbat is just around the corner. Unfortunately we will not be able to meet our eldest son and daughter-in-law this weekend either. Omicron still determines our daily life, which has been characterized by constant antigen tests for the past 10 days, which then sent some family members into quarantine. One after the other, everyone was eventually infected. But at least nobody in the family got sick, everyone was and is doing well, which may well be a peculiarity of the Omicron variant. Our youngest son was even happy to have a few days off from the army thanks to Omicron. I was the only one to have never been infected. Am I immune? We live in a crazy time.

Most of the family has now received their “recovered” certificates. Our daughter is now going to the university every day again, but the classes there are very empty. Our son has to stay at home in his room for the weekend, which doesn’t bother him at all. Next week he has to go back to his base. Before that, however, he has to undergo an official rapid antigen test again. That means standing in line once again. But we’ve gotten used to that.

First there were endless queues at the PCR testing stations, now we wait equally long for a ‘quick’ antigen test. The labs have reached their limit. Photo: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

The number of new Corona cases every day is incredible. Yesterday almost 50,000 new cases were reported, with around 250,000 Israelis now in quarantine. It’s a lockdown in all but name. The streets are much emptier, and there are hardly any traffic jams. And this silent lockdown is also being felt in shops and malls, although our Finance Minister Avigdor Liberman continues to insist that local businesses are doing just fine. He based this assertion on a single visit to a shopping center here in Modiin, of all places. I understand he doesn’t want to release vast sums of money to compensate business owners, which is in turn driving many of them into the streets in protest. The popularity of the new government continues to plummet.

Independent business owners and tourism workers protest outside the Finance Ministry in Jerusalem demanding compensation from the Israeli government. Photo: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

I wonder how much longer this will go on. Besides Corona, we have many other problems in Israel. In the Negev, Israel is increasingly losing control, the army is dealing with tragic accidents, such as the crash of a helicopter and now the deadly friendly-fire incident.

What can I say, dear readers, let’s hope for better times together.

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