Covid-19 Stories: 'Watching the blind leading the blind' in the US

(Above) LA based Mullingar musician Tanya O'Callaghan.

Tanya O’Callaghan

Mullingar native Tanya O’Callaghan is a professional musician based in Los Angeles. A bass guitarist, she has played with some of the biggest names in rock and pop music.

I am a Mullingar woman living in LA – watching the blind lead the blind over here as people have grossly politicised a scientific issue. As a touring musician, my industry and all tours are on a year-long (maybe more) pause, which was a tough blow – got pulled off the road in March mid-tour. Luckily I work in multiple artistic endeavours so I’m using the time wisely to develop other projects. It’s sad to see people descend into ridiculous behaviour and seem to be completely incapable of finding a healthy conversation to move forward – feels more like the Divided States of America.

If they don’t start regulating non fact checked media and the 24/7 trash news cycles that are allowed over here, the brainwashing will never stop. Simultaneously, there’s a beautiful uprising happening and people saying enough is enough with the outrage and social justice movements. The tyrants are few and the good people are many – here’s hoping the people with the most common sense rise to the top.

Staying safe, masking up when going close to people, slowly seeing friends who have had common sense through this, and staying healthy with wholesome nutritious foods.

Missing home, currently cannot leave to visit home as I won’t get back in with new visa regulations.

Immigration, well that’s a whole other long story for another day.

Tom Kenny from Keoltown with former Taoiseach Enda Kenny when he visited Toronto a number of years ago. The two men’s great grandfathers were brothers.

Tom Kenny

Tom Kenny from Keoltown lives in Canada. A founder member of the Westmeath Association in Toronto, he says that people are getting used to the new normal.

We are very much the same as you guys are in lockdown, they are slowly opening up restaurants with limited spaces. Face masks have to be worn on public transport. A lot of bars and restaurants are going under – it’s very sad. The whole culture of work is changing, most people are working from home, very hard if you have kids. Tradesmen are back to work with better sanitation stations, that sort of thing.

So to sum it up, it’s very much the same as with you. There are quite a few younger people from Westmeath here, all part of the great Irish diaspora living in Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver... But the US is another story all together.

Gerry Galvin

Gerry Galvin lived in Mullingar for two years before moving to Germany two years ago.

As people know, Germans like rules and regulations. You might say it’s a good or a bad thing. From mid-May, the rule was introduced to wear some form of mask in all public places also in places where social distancing was a problem.

Unfortunately, around the world, some governments have advised that masks are ineffective in order to ensure that medical staff have enough. Here entry is not allowed without a mask. Governments and media are certainly not always right, just take a look at what’s happening in America. I really fear for them. I don’t think anybody wants a second wave and now is the time to act.

So if I can contribute anything, it is disregard false advise and wear masks, and tell everyone else to wear them too.

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