Gatherings were Suspended
Updated: May 1, 2020
Face to face connection had always been valuable to us humans. In the old days, important decisions required rulers separated by sea and mountains to gather together and be in the same place when a treaty had to be signed. They traveled great distances to have a dialogue with the kings and queens of the other kingdom. When they could not attend it in person, they would send another human to represent them. They sent their envoy.
That was how it was in the past before our voices and images could be transmitted electronically. In this day and age, despite the innovations that allowed us to communicate over long distances, when it was important enough, people still traveled to be physically present for an important event. For example, we endured long haul flights, crappy airline food, and jet lag just to witness the wedding of a sibling. We would brave the holiday rush at the airport just to be with our family during Christmas or New Year. Physical presence was still important to us in this day of Facetime and Video Conferencing that virtual events like funeral services and masses were still considered a novelty.
Today was my first day back at work. I worked from home. My company had a liberal work from home policy. So conducting business in the comfort of our homes was not new for most of us in my team. Zoom was a tool that we were all familiar with. We conducted our daily meetings over zoom even before the lock down. With mobility extremely limited, most companies allowed their employees to work from home. Zoom became so popular. People started using it not just for work. Schools started conducting online classes using zoom. Even families and friends started using it for virtual get-together.
Some of us were brave enough to show our faces to the people we met with. A lot were embarassed and hid behind the black square that represented them in zoom calls. They would rather fill up that space in the participant's roster with the letters of their name. Working from home allowed them to not put up with the usual routine of fixing up for the people outside the four corners of their home. I myself did not put on hair gel but still grabbed a hair brush to fix my hair just in case I felt like switching on the video camera for my meetings.
Today I read a tweet: now we will see how many of these meetings could have been e-mails.