Signs of the Pandemic Times in Regina
· 4 min. read
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This is a hard article for me to write. On one side, it is easy because I am going to let the pictures do most of the talking. On the other side, it is really, really difficult. It is difficult because for every "closed" sign on a door, there is a family without money, a table without food, a student without a job, a business without a profit and a future that is uncertain.
Even though the Premier of Saskatchewan has put out a 5-step plan to reopen the province, nothing is happening for at least another month. A lot of businesses, restaurants, shops and stores will never be reopened. Post-pandemic Regina will be quite different than just a few months ago.
I think it is fair to say that nobody will take for granted a festival, a concert, a sports game or any type of event ever again. Nobody will take for granted steady employment, a paycheque, a job or a future.
For me, this pandemic is a double-edged sword. I have been trying to raise awareness for the Spanish Influenza pandemic for the past few years. Ever since the monument was created in 2017, I've been doing lectures, talks and articles all about it -- with many of them falling on deaf ears. I've held lectures on both provincial and federal levels and rarely is there even a crowd. Only a handful of my friends came, and nobody from the heritage organization I volunteered at bothered to show up. I must admit, it is great to have people care about my research, and listen to what I have to say. I am fielding questions about the Spanish Influenza almost every day, which is a dream come true.
But the cost of that is something I never wished to happen.
We are fortunate that the COVID-19 pandemic is not as bad as the Spanish Influenza pandemic. The virus isn't as fatal, we have proper protocols in place, and we have an understanding of how germs spread. But the economic damage it caused is something that will define many of us for years to come.
There isn't much we can do differently now than what we did back in 1918, but there is one thing. Historians and universities around the world are asking people to record their daily lives. This doesn't necessarily mean making TikTok videos or vlog updates. It could be as simple as a diary, a ledger, a scrapbook or any kind of art. We have as much understanding of how people spent their lives during the Spanish Influenza as we do during the Black Death because of the lack of records. Please record as much as you can about your daily lives, as historians will love it in the future.
This blog post will be a minor contribution to that. This is a collection of storefronts, signage and posters around the city of Regina that have been impacted by the pandemic. Many of them will never open again, but I hope the best for each and every one of them.
I took all these pictures between April 20th and April 25th.
The following were also submitted by Lori Sullivan on Twitter. Thank you for sending them!
Stay safe, wash your hands and when this is over, shop local, buy local and support local. We will get through this together.
Don't forget to pin it!
Categories: COVID-19, History, Regina, Saskatchewanderer, Spanish Influenza