I became aware of my privilege when I recently telephoned a friend in Berlin from Beijing. We discussed what we could do about the turn of the year, when I hope to be in Europe; i suggested skiing. Nice idea, replied my friend – he could hardly imagine that the Austrians would get their ski areas Corona-proof. Even if you do without après-ski in Ischgl – how should that work, keep your distance in the queue at the valley station, in the gondolas?
I was flabbergasted because I hadn’t even thought about it. It was then that I realized how long it has been since I even thought about the risk of infection. My privilege (not to mention the fact that I can afford a skiing holiday): I live in a country where the pandemic is de facto over – for the time being. I live in china.
While Europe is in the middle of the second wave and the governments are tightening the corona rules, life in the People’s Republic has largely normalized. There are still restrictions, not least the isolation from the outside. But in the interior of the country, the measures are now so integrated into everyday life that I hardly notice them anymore. And infection is about as likely as winning the lottery.