The Pandemic – A Few Shots From The First Year

This post is a collection of a few select images made in rural Thailand while living one year with COVID-19 in our lives. It is not a timeline of the pandemic. It is images I feel give a small overview of what life has been like living and photographing in our remote area of Pakphli, Nakhon Nayok, Thailand.

Background: On March 26, 2020, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha declared a state of emergency in Thailand, and a curfew went into effect on 3 April. All commercial international flights were suspended from 4 April, and lockdown measures were implemented in varying degrees throughout the country.

Masks were nothing new in Thailand. Food workers and those feeling ill always wore masks. By the end of April however, masks, requested at first, and then mandated, even required for entry into large supermarkets, became the new normal in Thailand.

By early July masks and social distancing, where possible, have firmly taken hold. It much more common to see people wearing masks than to see people without masks in public places.

To be fair Food vendors have usually worn masks, but the shoppers, not so much. I’d say 70/30 not wearing masks before the pandemic.

The fear we have today in my village is not from a local contamination, we are relatively COVID-19 free, with only one or two cases and no deaths, But as my daughter leaves for Bangkok in the above photo, it makes me nervous.

I don’t want to leave you with the impression that we run around wearing a mask all the time, we don’t, nor do we live our lives in fear, but we do have a healthy respect for what the pandemic is capable of. It’s in the news daily.

What I will leave you with is a photo of my son Captain playing Thai farmer, something he can do anytime he wants to as we live in rice farming country.

I’ll post more photos of the first year as time goes on. But for now I’ll just say that there are hundreds more, and this post is getting longish. So … Stay safe, and as you go out and about, please wear your mask and social distance, we do.

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