For some strange reason, the image of the seed head of a dandelion comes to mind when I think of Covid-19. I don’t know why but it has remained strong. Perhaps, I am thinking, that the fact that for a very brief moment the seed head is a thing of beauty. Its spherical shape, so rounded, is a marvel of nature.
However, it doesn’t take long for the seeds to be loosened and then swept away by the wind to find a resting place in any nook or cranny, or piece of soil to settle and germinate. If not caught in time, it becomes impossible to eradicate. The more you take away the leaves, the stronger the root becomes and the deeper they go into the earth. Breaking off the root only encourages it to grow more vigorously.
The flowers usually appear in early spring and flourish for months dying down for a while after the seeds are scattered and re-emerge in late summer and early autumn to settle down for the winter.
The virus that spread around the globe has the capacity to replicate itself with extraordinary efficiency and like the dandelion seeds is very difficult to suppress as we are finding out on a daily basis. The effects of the second wave seem to hit harder than the first and as each day passes the figures that are being put out on the national airwaves are extremely worrisome.
Anecdotally, we hear of groups of people gathering for social occasions despite the request to limit gatherings and from what I can glean from the various experts, the virus spreads unseen and unknown to many hosts of the virus. So the cumulative effect is to replicate with alarming speed.
When will it all end? The latest news is that NPHED is recommending once again that the country should be put on Level 5 restrictions. While I am usually a compliant person, the drip-drip of slowly being put under increasing restriction is wearing thin. I know that it is for the good of our health and to ensure that our hospitals are not overrun with very sick people, nevertheless, the continuing escalation of the spread of the virus in our communities and counties is of deep concern.
Going back to the dandelion. For some it is a useful ingredient as food and for various ailments. The bright yellow flower that emerges all over the place in spring is a sign of the brighter days after the winter bleakness, but as a gardener, I dread the spread of the seeds as they can invade all sorts of places, not least the lawn, but more critically, little cracks in the pavement or gaps in paths.
But God has a way of revealing the beauty of his creation in ways we may not appreciate at times, but yet despite all our efforts, nature usually has a way of regenerating itself. If the virus pandemic has taught us anything, perhaps we need to pay more attention to what is there already and not be so aggressively trying to manufacture beyond our needs or ability to sustain healthy living.
16 October 2020
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