The COVID-19 pandemic has changed all of our lives in one way or another, so what do you think will happen when it’s all over? Some people think things will continue to change, while others believe that life will just go back to normal after the pandemic ends.
After conducting interviews, I found that most people think things will continue to change after the pandemic ends because they will still be scared that another round of COVID-19 could spike. I personally agree with this; however, I do still hope that when the COVID-19 pandemic ends, life will transition back to normal completely. I have found that people believe many different things will happen after the pandemic.
One interviewee, Kai Deguzman, believes that even after the pandemic ends, the economy will be devastated and many people will be unemployed, so it will be extremely challenging for life to go back to the way it once was. She says, “I suppose I want things to go back to normal, but I know that things will never be ‘normal’ again.” However, she says, “I think people will still be relieved once all this is over.”
I agree with Deguzman that the economy will probably still be struggling even after the pandemic ends because people will still be unemployed, especially since our economy is based on tourism. It may be even harder to employ people because we will need to convince tourists and travelers that it is safe to go out and travel again to Hawaii. This may take a while because many people will be scared to go out even after the pandemic is over, and the last thing I think most of them will be thinking about is traveling.
This idea is contradicted by a response I got from another interviewee, Maribeth Thompson, who says that she wants to “finally go on a vacation” when the COVID-19 pandemic is over. However, she is worried about the prices going up for travel after the pandemic because she thinks that the airlines will try to make up for all the money they lost, so it will be harder for middle class people to travel. As an addition to this, I found that 23% of the other people I interviewed agreed with her and said that they would like to travel as well.
I think this is interesting because while some people are more focused on what’s going to happen in their economy and community when it’s over, others are more focused on how the pandemic is going to affect themselves and what they would like to do. I believe that we should focus on both, because what your economy and community do will affect you, and what you do may affect them.
However, if I had to choose which was more important (myself or the economy), it would be the economy, because while I may be worried about what I could or could not do, in the long run having a good economy would be better than my immediate happiness or pleasure. If the economy can’t recover, then our society will never revert back to normal. Also, many people that I know are hugely impacted in a horrible way because of the state of their economy and community. This makes it hard to dwell on what only I want, when I know so many people out there need our economy to improve, not only for their happiness but also for their quality of life and security.