People all around the globe are currently directly, or indirectly, affected by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. The Levant News publishes voices from a wide variety of people with different backgrounds. After stories from the Netherlands, Saudi Arabia and Italy today George Labaki writes from the mountains of Lebanon.
As a citizen of this world, I am affected with the Coronavirus outbreak like billions of other people. This crisis was quite tough for me; from a professional and personal point of view.
As a Director of a regional Organization that operates across the whole Middle East and North Africa region, I was no longer able to travel abroad. Many of our projects were cancelled or put on hold. This is not easy for an employer who needs to secure dozens of salaries each month.
In addition, I like to describe myself as sociable person. I have a very busy social life with my friends and relatives. I am a person that likes to go out every evening either to meet with one of my friends or for one my business dinners.
Nevertheless, this crisis helped me to see things from a different point of view. I actually took advantage of this confinement to better explore the area where I live. I found myself lucky to live in the country side of Lebanon, and be surrounded by forest and lovely pine trees.
I took the habit to hike almost on a daily basis in my area; look around and explore things I have seen before. I was thrilled to discover lovely areas and even historical places.
This confinement helped the air to become cleaner, the atmospheric pollution decreased by 62% and that is something that I can feel. We are end of April, and the temperature where I live is still low: is around 10 degrees at night at an altitude of 850 m.
I hope this confinement will help each citizen on this planet to become more socially aware and show more environmental responsibility. More and more I realise we are merely visitors of this planet, and we need to protect it and preserve it for the generations to come.
In this confinement, one thing became evident: being rich or being poor turned out to be the same. We all breathe the same, drink the same water. We are have to deal with the same. And this is what counts at the end of the day!
George Labaki is the Chief Executive Officer of Phoenix Clinical Research. He has 20 years of pharmaceutical experience.