Our lives are in limbo because of Covid
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Our lives are in limbo because of Covid

The lockdown has changed life for all of us in ways large and small. I miss my monthly trips to the beach in Thailand, lazing around in a plush hotel with a Mai Tai in my hand and a Tai Tai nowhere in sight. Tai Tai is my dear wife, although in this case the relevant definition of the word ‘dear’ is ‘expensive’. She tells me she misses the long dinners with the girls. Others reminisce about the hustle and bustle of business travel.

But there are sadder stories, which make even a usually jolly Taipan reflect on the personal toll a lot of us are facing from this pandemic — even those lucky enough not to be directly affected by the disease.

Take one senior banker in Hong Kong. She's a mother of three young children, but her husband has been stuck in Morocco, unable to return home for nearly six months now, after heading there for business. Another one of my friends hasn’t seen his children for nearly as long after a similar ‘short’ work trip became an extended one after countries hastily closed borders and stopped flights to curb the spread of the pandemic.

Others have seen life plans put on hold. One chap working in Singapore was slated to move to South Africa in April for a new job with his bank. Six months on, he is still in Singapore with his family, with his move and new job in limbo as visa processing has been halted.

Some might read these stories and feel no sympathy. Certainly, in each case it could be worse. But why do we work in the first place, if not to provide a better life for those we love? It almost makes me want to go home and tell Tai Tai how much I love her. I’ll just stop at the pub first.

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