Interstate 49 highway
Photograph ©2017 by Brian Cohen.

8 Things I Will Miss About the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Pandemic

Regardless of what are your thoughts and beliefs pertaining to the reactions and response to the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus Pandemic, one thing that virtually everyone can agree upon is that this will be one of the biggest events in the history of human beings on our planet.

8 Things I Will Miss About the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Pandemic

Before citing what I actually will miss about the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus Pandemic, the latest update is that at the time this article was written, at least 193,825 people — or slightly greater than 6.89 percent — have died of the minimum of 2,810,325 confirmed cases worldwide, according to this situation dashboard from the World Health Organization pertaining to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus.

I am a believer that one death — whether caused by the 2019 Novel Coronavirus or other source — is one death too many, so the fact that almost 200,000 people have died is indeed unfortunate; and I truly miss being able to travel around the world…

…but I am also a believer that there are disadvantages with everything that is good; and there are advantages with everything that is bad — and the executive order for businesses within the state of Georgia had me thinking about the eventual end of the pandemic and what I would actually miss.

1. No Traffic Jams

Interstate 49 highway
Photograph ©2017 by Brian Cohen.

Whenever I have had to drive during the order of staying in place at home, I eventually realized that I did not have to be concerned about timing — such as when rush hour begins and ends so that I do not spend more time getting to or from where I needed to go.

In addition to rush hour, the times when schools and church begin and end can also cause vehicular traffic mayhem within the vicinity — sometimes to the point of gridlock, where no one is able to move for an extended period of time. A similar effect can occur around stadiums and arenas for major sporting events and concerts.

2. Cleaner Air

Ana Te Pora Easter Island
Photograph ©2019 by Brian Cohen.

“Even before the coronavirus, air pollution killed seven million people a year”, according to this article written for National Geographic by

I have noticed how much cleaner the air seems to be on the many miles of walks which I have taken during the order to stay in place in the jurisdiction where I am based — and walking is thankfully encouraged under that order. The sun seems to shine brighter, the air seems to smell cleaner, and I can see further away than usual.

3. Shorter Queues

Lisbon Airport
Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

I cannot stand waiting in line for something and always attempt to avoid that whenever possible — but I noticed that queues have been shorter overall at such places as restaurants, supermarkets, and automobile mechanic service facilities.

What a savings of time I have experienced by not waiting in line at establishments as long as during the days prior to the pandemic.

4. Lower Prices

Megabus Love’s truck stop
Photograph ©2015 by Brian Cohen.

Restaurants have been offering sales on the food they sell, since most of them have not been allowed to have patrons dining in them — such as this offer from LongHorn Steakhouse about which I wrote.

Another example is the price for a gallon of gasoline, which has been as low as 75 cents per gallon — a price which has not been seen in the United States in decades. The last article which I wrote highlighted where you can get gasoline as low as 89 cents per gallon — and some fuel stations in the United States are still offering gasoline at or approximately that price.

5. More Quality Time

I often thought that many people in society needed to take a break from the endless, self-defeating, or pointless pursuit pertaining to employment and social opportunities. I know that I have been spending more time in natural settings, as I always enjoy being outdoors in the woods or near a stream.

6. Distancing Ourselves From Each Other

I may not like the term social distancing — but that does not mean I eschew the concept. As I wrote in this article pertaining to 5 Reasons Why I Have Not Changed Anything Despite 2019 Novel Coronavirus Pandemic:

Unless I am in a gregarious mood — which is not typical for me — I arguably pretty much invented the practice of avoiding other people whenever possible; so the recommendation of distancing myself at least six feet from other people requires no change on my part.

I am hoping that we can maintain our minimum safe distances from each other long after the pandemic will have officially concluded…

…but the truth is that spreading seven billion people apart around the world with little to no new real estate on our planet — combined with an increasing population — may prove to be more difficult than some of us might think…

7. Everyone Properly Washing Hands Thoroughly and Regularly

Wash hands
Photograph ©2016 by Brian Cohen.

Although washing hands thoroughly and properly seems to be en vogue as a result of attempting to keep oneself protected against contracting the 2019 Novel Coronavirus, I sadly believe that a significant number of people will become lackadaisical about maintaining this regimen after the pandemic has been official declared at an end…

…but I do believe that a substantial number of people will have been in the habit of properly washing their hands on a regular basis by that time as well.

8. More Sanitary Facilities

Window Washer Shanghai Pudong Airport
Photograph ©2014 by Brian Cohen.

Peace of mind — even if fleeting — is one thing which comes to mind with the facilities, equipment, and furnishings of companies being thoroughly cleaned, disinfected, and sanitized when patronizing them.

The one question I have is why did companies not implement the techniques to sanitize and disinfect their operations prior to the pandemic — even though many infectious diseases existed prior to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus?

While some of the cleaning procedures seem to be a little excessive, I am hoping that they stay long after the pandemic is officially considered ended.


Other than the obvious death toll which has been caused by the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic, other things which have been associated with it will not be missed by me — such as companies which use the pandemic in advertising for the sole purpose of attempting to increase revenue and profits.

My greatest hope is that we all learn some valuable lessons from the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic to improve society overall in honor and remembrance of those who have lost their lives. If we successfully do so, their deaths will not have been all for naught.

This article is the latest in a series pertaining to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus — which is also known as COVID-19 or 2019-nCoV or SARS-CoV-2 or HCoV-19 or severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 — pandemic in an effort to get the facts out with information derived from reliable sources…

…as well as attempt to maintain a reasoned and sensible ongoing discussion towards how to resolve this pandemic.

Other articles at The Gate which pertain to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus include:

All photographs ©2014, ©2015, ©2016, ©2017, and ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

  1. Since ~ 160,000 people per DAY die, every day of the year.. (~60million deaths a year). Including 1.2Million from auto accidents… we’re about 1.25 days worth of normal deaths.

    And, you know what no one has reported – are *more* people dying. Or, just the normal amount.
    Sure, everyone will say ‘omg, this is a CV death’ ok, fine. That doesn’t mean a lot.

    Have *more* people died, or, is it about the same number that die annually still?
    I think when *that* statistics is shown for the last 12 months, we’re going to be even more mad at ourselves for stopping the world for this.

    That said, I am traveling weekly, and it has *easily* been some of my favorite traveling of my life.
    – Airports are empty (I have been only person on a 737-900)
    – Everyone is happy to see me (restaurants, hotels, taxis/uber, flight attendants)
    – Hotels are empty (twice in last week, I was only guest in entire hotel)
    – Prices are cheap (gas, hotels, cars, airfare)

    It’s been.. just some of my favorite traveling in the world.
    I have trips booked every week for a while still… but, I can sense it starting to pick up. More people are openly hostile to the huge over reaction. More people are talking about getting back to normal.

    There is life after this media induced, social media fed, lazy stay at home cultural blunder we made.

    But, for now, March through end of April is certainly the halcyon days for my for traveling.
    It’s perfect, and I’m so thankful I’m out there 6/7 days each week exploring our great country in this way.
    I’ll never ever forget these days.

    1. Auto accident fatalities average 38,000 annually in the US. This is roughly the same amount of deaths caused by the coronavirus in the period from 12-26 April. Right now the coronavirus is MUCH more deadly than auto accidents.

  2. Good piece, Brian. I agree. It’s almost as if this entire surreal period was planned as to jolt people into reconnecting with a slower pace of life, to reengage with the basics – or in many cases, for people to first experience – in how we can live without the mindless consumption, in a technological and virtual reality black hole that modern bipeds have fallen into. Some just might save themselves and crawl out of the edge of the abyss. We shall see. A new world might be in the offing.

    That said, I plan to take a series of long road trips to see things that I’ve put on hold for years. I think there will still be in July a large absence of international tourists to America and somewhat less domestic tourists out and about. I don’t plan on delving into crowds, but want to see the natural wonders and some historic sites that are not in urbanized areas.

    Also, I plan on, when possible, to do a East Europe trip. Will avoid France, Italy, Spain. No need to risk things. Will traverse countryside of E. Europe avoiding people by use of a rental car.

    Never let a crisis go to waste. Happy travels. Stay safe – and sane.

    1. I’ve had some of these same thoughts, but I’m worried about the new norms that might be developing. For every family enjoying the outdoors, I suspect there are many more who are hunkered down at home, interacting with the world only online. It seems that technology is being used as a substitute for the remaining direct social connections we have. While these effects will certainly be reduced in the future, I’m afraid that many will continue. I feel like we’re seeing a preview of a dystopian society where everyone get their own dwelling and never needs to leave.

  3. I will miss the following (some of them the same as yours)

    Seeing our six kids every day whenever I want to any time of the day, and being able to give them hugs, including our son who is supposed to be away at School
    No Traffic Jams
    Not worrying about getting wet or cold when it’s raining and I have to go outside, since I don’t have to go outside
    Not worrying about whether I am going to be able to achieve Diamond Status with Delta next year (I am hoping for full detox and recovery on that one by the end of all this)
    Having better attendance at the board meetings I participate in because anyone can join from anywhere
    Lower shopping bills
    Not getting sick (not just with COVID-19)

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